Anambra River

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Ọmambala River
Native nameOsimiri Ọmambala
StateAnambra State and Enugu state
Local Government AreasAnambra East, Anambra West, Ayamelum, Uzo Uwani
Physical characteristics
MouthNiger River
 • location
Onịcha, Onịcha úgwú, Anambra State
Length256 km (159 mi)
Basin size2,751 sq mi (7,130 km2)[1]
 • locationOnịcha

The Anambra River (Igbo: Ọmambala) flows 210 kilometres (130 mi) into the Niger River and is found in Anambra, Nigeria. The river is the most important feeder of the River Niger below Lokoja. The flow of the Ọmambala River is released into the Atlantic through various outlets forming the 25,000-square-kilometre (9,700 sq mi) Niger Delta region.[2]

Anambra River Region and Culture[edit]

Omambala was the name of the ancient goddess whose river runs from the Uzo-uwa-ani underworld to Anam and Onicha axis, where it connects with Nkisi & Niger-kwora/Mgbakili Rivers in their journey to the Atlantic Ocean, according to the indigenous people.

There are several myths and mysteries surrounding Omambala which led to different interpretations by many tribes and nationalities, hence the pronunciation of Omambala as Anambra by the earlier European explorers.

Before the creation of states, Omambala was formerly used to refer to the area comprising present-day Anambra, parts of Kogi, Enugu and Ebonyi states by the indigenous people of that area.  Currently, indigenous people from Aguleri, Anam, Nsugbe, Umueri, Anaku, Nteje, Umunya, Nando, Igbariam, Nkwelle-Ezunanka, Nzam, Awkuzu, Ogidi, Ogbunike, the Ayamelum clan, as well as others, make claims to the Omambala heritage.

Omambala people have distinct dialects, customs, traditions and ethnophilosophical values with many mystical and esoteric belief systems that place a strong value on spiritualism over capitalism, and are held together by an eternal bond of custom, language, religious tradition and the Omambala River. This is due to the strong bond and attachment that exists between them and their natural cosmology and ecosystem.

The socio-economic, socio-cultural and socio-political influence of the Omambala region extends to parts of Edo, Delta, Imo, Rivers, Abia, Taraba, Benue, Niger, Nasarawa, Plateau, Akwa-Ibom & Cross-Rivers States of Nigeria and as far as Niger, Chad, Cameroon, Mali, Central African Republic, etc.


  1. ^ Anyadike, Raymond N. C.; Phil-Eze, Phillip O. (1989). "Runoff Response to Basin Parameters in Southeastern Nigeria". Geografiska Annaler. Series A, Physical Geography. Blackwell Publishing. 71 (1–2): 75. JSTOR 521009.
  2. ^ Shahin, Mamdouh (2002). Hydrology and water resources of Africa. Springer. pp. 307–309. ISBN 1-4020-0866-X.