Apa State or not, the point is that the Bongos Ikwues of this world are, today, strategically located in relation to both Idoma cultural essentialism and to its Dialogue of Civilisations. In Bongos’s case, this flows from his mastery of Idoma cosmography and the creative utilisation of same in both English and the Idoma language, thereby becoming the only communicator of cultural authenticity alive whose message cuts across class, gender, generational, linguistic and geo-political diversities in Idomaland.
That is why Bongos is the inheritor of the musical tradition in Idomaland pioneered by such people as Barrister Joe Omakwu who sang the classic, “Achenche”. He, along with others like Joe Akatu, Ada Atama (aka Joe Onyela), Igbe, Ichicha, Peter Otulu, Oleje Oona and the masculinist Oglinya dancers from my own native Edumoga constitute the referents in cultural creativity in spite of differences in genres and creative impulse between them. Idomaland is now worse that almost all of them are gone by way of death or their exclusion from the stage by a more muscular modernity.