Following the insinuation rocking the airwaves that the Palm Wine Drinkers Club, the most popular socio-cultural group in the Nigerian tertiary institutions, known as the Kegites’ club international is nothing but a faceless cult group, a custodian of culture who is also a member of the Club, His Royal Majesty, Oba Peter Ojo Daramola, Olora of Oke- Ora, Ido- Osi Local Government Area of Ekiti State, has debunked the assertion during an event in Ibadan.
According to the Traditional Ruler, Oba Ojo Daramola, the Kegites club is a voluntary organization that stands for the promotion of African culture and tradition, saying that is why Kegites’ appreciate cultural things and believe in palm wine which is unhydrated but natural drink.
Continuing, Oba Daramola said, the Kegites club is not a secret cult, reaffirming that, the club has nothing to do with any secret organization, but a peace loving club. He further described the club as an open secret organization, where affairs are conducted in the open while there is no restriction on entrance to the shrines.
Going deep into the tradition of the club, he recalled the good old days while he was at the Premier University of Ibadan, stating that the club is so unique and decent.
“Before anyone can be initiated as a member, you have to be academically sound, they have to go to your department to verify your academic background, I was on solid 2.1 before I got initiated”, he explained.
Contributing to this development, a former Archival Chief of the club at the National Headquarters, University of Ibadan between 1993-1994, Comrade Jide Olatunbosun popularly known as “Pack ham together” frowned at the allegation leveled against the Kegites’ club from some quarters.
Olatunbosun disclosed that the kegites club international is an open secret club, because her activities are operated openly and there is no secret attached to it.
He also stressed further that the club is registered with the Board of Senate, University of Ibadan around 1973.
Olatunbosun maintained that the main objective of the club is to promote African culture and tradition and the basis of African unity is the palm wine which is a natural drink.
The Archival Chief, Comrade Olatunbosun did not hesitate to explain how he got attracted to the kegites’ club. According to him, “it takes an interest to be a member of any club, we are all victim of interest”, he stated.
“Apart from interest, there are also some things that induced me to this club, they shared love, members always assist each other, while we were on campus, even if you don’t have money, you will surely be taken care.
“More so, they have a very powerful network, there is no field of endeavours’ you would not find them, they are spread across the globe, even my present employment was given to me by a kegite Chief, immediately, I lost my former job”, he continued .
A leader of the club who rose to the apex level of the hierarchy over three decades ago, Chief Taofeek Gbolagade Rahmon generally known as “Ogbori Efon” expressed his displeasure about the guess which he described as a baseless and unfounded allegation.
The seasoned financial expert, ‘Ogbori ‘ averred that the club is a socio-cultural organization that is well rooted in the promotion of African culture and ways of life.
Elaborating further, he said the emergence of one as the leader of the club depends on various attributes which include: “strong character, humility, brilliancy, ability to coordinate and manage people, to the glory of God, I emerged as a Chief between 1986/1987, since then, I had never regretted being a member of the palm wine drinkers club”, Gbolagade stated confidently.
He stressed that the club has offered him more goodies and benefits. “I got my contacts from the club; who are now at the top cadre and doing pretty well in their various endeavours”.
In addition, Chief Ogbori disclosed that the club has impacted a lot to his life ranging from hard work, sharing, service to humanity, obedient and humility, all these are strong characteristics of a good Leader which he claimed to have learnt from the Kegites’ Club International.
However , the stakeholders expressed their discomfort about the present situation of the club, stating that most of her members have derailed from the core objective, which is the promotion of African tradition and cultural heritage, while most of the members have polluted the system, believing that they must belong to one secret organization or the other. One of our song states ,“mele, mele sawo, mele segbe elemu pelu pirates oo “, meaning that, we are dissociating ourselves from all these secret clubs, even, if anyone have been mistakenly initiated and at the end of the day we discovered that such person belongs to any of the secret club, we shall get him/her dismissed from the Kegites Club International”.
The stakeholders unanimously charged all the members of the club, particularly, those who are still on campus to revive, redeem and reclaim the lost glory of the Great Kegites’ club International in line with the lofty dream of its founding fathers.
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