Definition of Ijo in English:


(also Ijaw)


  • 1A member of a people inhabiting the Niger delta in southern Nigeria.

    • ‘Archaeological research in the Niger Delta has concentrated on the Ijo more than any other group, perhaps in part because they are the most populous group in the region and the fourth largest in Nigeria.’
    • ‘At the same time, responses to the environment differ enormously among Delta peoples: in contrast to the Ijo, whose art and ritual embrace water, the Isoko tend to be rather indifferent to it.’
    • ‘The Ijo live in the Niger Delta region, where dry land is very scarce.’
    • ‘The principal ethnic groups in the oil-yielding communities are the Ogonis, the Ijaws, and the Itsekiris.’
    • ‘Prominent ethnic groups in this area include the Ijo, Itsekiri, Isoko, Urhobo, Delta, Yoruba, Igbo, Ekpeye, Abua, and Ogoni, many of whom share masquerade traditions and forms of social organization.’
    • ‘Asari leads a rebel group which says it is fighting for the rights of the impoverished ethnic Ijaw in the Niger Delta region, the center of the west African country's substantial oil industry.’
    • ‘This year alone, the two riverine communities of Ijaw and Itsekiri in Delta state have engaged each other twice in bloody wars, losing lives and property on both sides.’
    • ‘He will do this, he says, unless his people, the Ijaw, who live on top of Nigeria's oil fields, are granted autonomy.’
    • ‘The other main occupation common amongst the Ijaw has traditionally been fishing.’
    • ‘In 2002 and 2003, the Ijaw complained about malpractices in the voter registration process.’
    • ‘Oral tradition and early European sources strongly suggest that it was the Ijo who first penetrated the Delta, probably entering the region at its apex or via the larger waterways.’
    • ‘The main communal conflict in the Delta region is between the Ijaw and Itsekiri, who both live in poverty amid the pollution caused by the oil companies.’
    • ‘Unfortunately, the Ijaw are internally divided, and the agitators I met did not really know what their ultimate goal was.’
    • ‘There are also tribal conflicts between the Urhobos, Itsekiris and Ijaws.’
    • ‘The Egbesu mainly represent the Ijaws, the fourth largest ethnic group, and operate in the oil-rich Niger Delta.’
    • ‘The Ijaw have been fighting since 2000 for compensation for environmental degradation in the oil-rich region.’
    • ‘Other ethnic groups working on the island included coastal Cameroonians and Ijo.’
    • ‘The discussion that follows will focus on the subsistence economy of the Ijo in the Niger Delta between the eighth and the eighteenth centuries of the common era.’
    • ‘Similarly, among the Ijo of the Niger Delta, a man acquires control over his children if he pays a ‘big dowry,’ whereas payment of a ‘little dowry’ enables his wife's lineage to retain her children.’
    • ‘Before long, other oil-yielding peoples, such as the Ijaws, Itsekiris, and Ondos, were launching their own campaigns.’
  • 2mass noun The language of the Ijo, an isolated member of the Niger–Congo family with several highly distinct dialects.

    • ‘English is the official language; however, Yoruba, Ibo, and Hausa represent the principal languages, joined by Kanuri, Fulani, Nupe, Tiv, Edo, Ijaw and Ibibio.’


  • Relating to the Ijo or their language.

    • ‘The actions of the Itsekiri and Ijaw women are a reminder of the uselessness of token measures adopted by succeeding governments to redress the inequalities so manifest in the oil-producing states.’
    • ‘The declaration soon stirred the entire Ijaw population, and more than 500 Ijaw communities supported it.’
    • ‘The endless ethnic violence in Nigeria's port town of Warri continues; Ijaw and Itsekiri youths take to the streets, killing, burning, and destroying property.’
    • ‘In our country Nigeria, studies have identified the Ijaw ethnic group as unreached.’
    • ‘Leaders of the Ijaw ethnic group condemned last week's killings.’
    • ‘In continued defiance of the position of their elders, the Ijaw youths invaded Egbokodo - Itsekiri in the early hours of last Saturday.’
    • ‘Local media said 12 Ijaw youths and two navy men died, although this could not be confirmed.’
    • ‘Similarly, the combined output of the four flow stations occupied by the Ijaw women is 150,000 barrels per day.’
    • ‘Fishing was also very important in the economies of the Eastern Delta Ijo groups.’
    • ‘Although a display of Ijo and Urhobo carvings in the exhibition includes maternity and other female images, many of the figures depict males and express the region's warrior ethos.’
    • ‘Has the Ijaw nation finally become synonymous with Niger Delta region or with South-south political zone?’
    • ‘Last week, suspected Itsekiri militants ambushed a boat carrying 10 Ijaw civilians to market in Warri, killing at least one of them.’
    • ‘In October there were clashes between Ijaw and Yoruba youth in Lagos with around a dozen-reported deaths.’
    • ‘Many Duala masks are reminiscent of the horizontal Ijo mask style combined with the Kru style of surface protrusions.’
    • ‘Other questions still remain, including demands made by Asari on behalf of the Ijaw people seeking self-determination and control over the vast oil reserves of the region.’
    • ‘The group, which says it is fighting for self-determination and a bigger share of Nigeria's oil wealth for the Niger Delta's Ijaw people, is demanding a sovereign national conference on the country's problems.’
    • ‘He told Newswatch that the present war started because restive Ijaw youths attacked and set ablaze six of the Itsekiri's riverine villages.’
    • ‘G.I. Jones de fined the Eastern Delta, in which he included Kalabari, Bonny, Nembe, and Okrika, all Ijo peoples.’
    • ‘The horizontal headdresses worn by the Ijo people are some of the rarest in Africa.’
    • ‘Companies fear a repeat of last year's uprising by members of the Ijaw tribe, who are in majority in the delta, which forced them briefly to shut 40 percent of Nigeria's oil production.’