A BRIEF HISTORY OF INA-WB CMSA INC.
Itsekiri National Association of the Washington-Baltimore Consolidated Metropolitan Area (CMSA) Incorporated though not formalized until October 1996, its idea grew out of the independent efforts of a couple of the founding members Mr. Gabriel Akuya and Mr. Hector Ayu to seek out other Itsekiri in the Washington, DC area, in the mid to late 1980s. The two informal groups that resulted from their efforts coalesced after some of its members became acquainted when they met at the Bendel Association and became an association in 1987. The group expanded easily as other Itsekiri in the area became a part of the informal gathering, including those from Baltimore, in the early 1990s. About this time Dr. Felix Abeson and Mr. Clement Odumu, who had become part of the gathering, began to suggest a need to meet periodically as a formal gathering. Quarterly meetings began around 1994, the quest for an association came to fruition two years later.
Dr. Felix Abeson as the first president was elected to run the affairs of the association in November 1996. Its constitution was written and adopted in 1997 and it became registered as a non-profit entity in April 1998. Soon after its formation, the fledgling association, in 1997, empowered its president to contact the presidents of other regional Itsekiri associations, in the United States, to solicit their support for efforts to assist in the rehabilitation of Itsekiri ravaged by the Warri Crisis in Nigeria, then in its infancy.