The slit drum, ekwe, as it is called in Igbo, is made from a tree trunk.
It is hollowed through its length from two cavities at its end. It also has a horizontal slit that connects the cavities. It varies in size, depending on use and importance.
The ekwe, as it is fondly called, is used in prayer houses for music. It is a simple carved wood that produces different sounds. It is also used in summoning meetings in Igboland. The sound of the ekwe early in the morning is a notice that the king wants to meet with the villagers. It could also mean announcements of a fire outbreak, theft, or other emergencies. For major events, the ekwe is a major instrument at coronations, cultural events such as new yam festivals, burials etc.