President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday described the Ooni of Ile-Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi as an epitome of culture and tradition. He added that the monarch is committed to the preservation of the cultural heritage of the Yoruba nation and projecting the race to the global community.
Speaking at the grand finale of the 2019 Ologo Festival Celebration, President Buhari, who was represented by the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola said culture is a means of identity for a race, ethnic or community, saying the Yoruba is unique because of its attachment to culture. “Culture is a means of identity for people, race or ethnicity and any nation that lacks culture loses its identity easily”. The President sends his regards to the monarch, the people of Ile-Ife and the Yoruba nation as a whole on the successful celebration of this year’s festival”, he said. President Buhari also commends sons and daughters of Ile-Ife for supporting the monarch and ensuring the annual expansion of the event. Also speaking, Osun state Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, represented by his Deputy, Olugboyega Alabi disclosed that Olojo festival is opening Ile-Ife to the world as a door to expose Osun cultural heritage to the world.
He said the state government would continue to support cultural celebration in all parts of the state. Oyetola said his administration would not relent in promoting culture and traditions, saying the state would be a beneficiary of such promotion. The President of Ile-Ife Progressive Union, Mr. Olajire Awowoyin said the festival is a projection of Yoruba cultural heritage beyond the shores of Nigeria to the world. He added that it symbolizes the identity of the Yoruba man, which explained the reason people of Africa descent globally joined in celebrating the festival. A High priest of Ile-Ife, Chief O. Dada described the festival as one of prayer, tranquility, and unity. He said the festival is used to appeased God to bless the race globally, saying the Ooni used the period of seclusion to pray for the unity, progress, and development of the country. Some of the dignitaries at the events were the Orangun of Ila, Oba Wahab Adedotun, his brother from Oke-Ila, Oba Adedokun Abolarin, Obi of Awka, Eze Austin Ngwu, wife of former Governor of Ogun state, Folusho Amosun, Consular-General of Holland among others.