In Igboland, the basic socio-political organization was the village or clan.
Although they had kings (Igwe, Obi Eze, etc), the villages or clans were ruled by the heads of the villages known as Okpara and council of elders while the age-grades saw to the implementation of the decisions of the council.
Thus, the Igbos were highly decentralized but fully democratic, in that every extended family must be represented in any decision-making in the village Thus any decision made by the council of elders must be executed by the age grades.
However, in the sphere of religion, the Igbo had secret cults headed by priests.
The shrines on many occasions were used in settling disputes.