The ozo Institution is referred to, as the most prestigious and noblest in Igbo Culture and Civilization.
The ozo social class was founded or invented, by the NRI PEOPLE, of Anambra State, a very long time ago. The rigorous, righteous and puritanical process, of attaining the qualification and subsequent earning of the title, define it’s power prestige and references.
In the local Ezeagu dialect, it’s said ( Nde nk afwuoluya OZO nwannaya, ka nnali Okpogho). This is translated to mean, that identifying with a Relation of yours, who is an OZO titled man, is more prestigious than owning millions of naira or dollars.
This proverb is significant in a number of ways. First, it demonstrates that the title is superior to, just aquiring money or wealth. Second, it conveys the significance and symbol of a powerful, political personality.
Just as we agreed, that personality has two components of nature and nurture, an OZO titled man is properly groomed, in both nature and nurture.
He must have been born from a family of impeccable background. He would grow in the acceptable norms and standards of the Community s rules of behavior. The ozo is as well, nurtured to be in good relationship with the Divine, or supreme being, Chukwuabiama. Chukwu Okike, God the creator.
In the process of installation of the ozo, he is given some days of meditation, to enable him engage in self searching and innermost inquiry of self, to bring him nearer to God Almighty. This is in view, of the impending roles of the ozo, as a religious leader. The same ozo is trained in oratory and syllogism, to prepare him for public speeches in representing his clan.
He is trained in Adjudication and initiated into the status of truth, by clearing or cleaning his tongue, called ( Isa ile).
The ritual involves, piercing a sharp object in the would be OZO s tongue to bring out blood. The blood that comes out is cleaned. The ozo is now led into some Prayers, at the end of which he is now, distinguished from when he was ordinary and now that he has attained, the prestigious position of Igbo Judicial officer. The ozo is therefore, a wealthy person, a political leader, an incorruptible judge and a religious leader.