AMASEIKUMOR 2024: Okerenkoko Leads as Winners Emerge in GYC Food Cooking Competition

updated 16 Apr, 2024

Like water, food is life. We eat food to stay healthy, to gain strength, and to enjoy life too. Food is therefore a very important part of our existence, and in the 2024 edition of the Amaseikumor Festival, the importance of good food is also highlighted with the presence of food vendors as participants of the annual festivities surely cannot do without food.

Aimed at rewarding Ijaw ladies who make good cook as well as showcase the varieties of Ijaw delicious meals, the Mr. Egbejule Kingsley-led Gbaramatu Youth Council (GYC) Worldwide organised a food cooking competition as part of the activities marking the annual Amaseikumor Festival in Oporoza Town.

The food cooking competition held in the afternoon hours of Monday, April 16, near the Oporoza field, with five qualified Gbaramatu communities participating in the exercise, namely: Okerenkoko, Kurutie, Oporoza, Pepe-ama and Tebujoh.

The selected delicacy prepared by the contestants is the Ijaw Egbagba-fia and the criteria used in adjudging the winner of the competition are: the taste of the food, presentation (servings), the time taken to prepare the meal, the neatness of the cook, and the placement of utensils traditionally when serving the delicacy.

Giving details on the preferred delicacy and how the contestants emerged, the coordinator of the cooking competition, Comr. Ekwetafia Stella Bobo, said the communities were selected at random excluding others who had participated in last year's competition.

"In last year's competition, five communities namely Azama, Inikorogha, Igoba, Kunukunuma and Opuede were selected. And so this year we decided to select Okerenkoko, Kurutie, Oporoza, Pepe-ama and Tebujoh.

"On the choice of Egbagba-fia, in last year's competition it was Kpanfararan fia. Next year we will choose another meal. We cannot be eating only one type of meal," she added.

Two senior women chiefs in Gbaramatu, Chief Dolphin and Chief Ghana Pondi,  were among the judges that decided the performance of the contestants, allotting them scores in the process as follows: Okerenkoko 68%, Kurutie 62%, Oporoza 50%, Pepe-ama 46% and Tebujoh 32%.

Speaking on the purpose of the food cooking competition, Comr. Ekwetafia said: "The purpose of the competition to preserve our food culture. It is not just cooking alone but how meals are served in the Ijaw way traditionally. Sadly, these days most don't know how to serve their husbands. The dining table has taken away the culture of traditional food servings and making us to forget our culture. Even with the dining we should still remember our culture."

On the prizes won, she disclosed that the organiser (GYC) had made provisions of N50,000k for the winner, N30,000k for the runners up, and N10,000k for the other contestants, but quickly added that supporters from Okerenkoko upped the first prize to N100,000k with their donations.

It is often said that if a man wants to live long, he should marry a woman who knows how to cook (prepare a sumptuous meal) very well. However, that man must also be willing and able to provide the resources that will make a very good meal. Afterall, 'Better food, na money kill am' so goes a popular saying. And if you're a man, still searching for a wife with good cooking skills, try an Ijaw woman!

View photos of the food cooking competition on PENGlobal Facebook page:

#penglobalentertainment #Amaseikumor2024 #GYC

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