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Sango Festival: Oyo Govt Harps on Culture As Foreign Exchange Source

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Oyo State government has called on Nigerians to see the promotion of their various cultures as viable means of generating foreign exchange income for the nation and the States concerned.

 

The Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism in the State, Dr. Wasiu Olatunbosun stated this at the 2019 Annual Sango Festival which held at the Palace of the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi 111, at Oyo town, where he represented the governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde on Saturday.

 

Olatunbosun said governor Makinde was eager to use all legally possible means to revive the economy of the State so as not to rely on the federal allocation which, according to him, could not cater for the basic need of the people of the State.

 

He said the present administration was looking for ways of boosting its internally-generated revenue while the moribund State-owned companies would be revived to anchor job provision and commercial resuscitation that would help the State to be financially free from going cap in hands to Abuja for monthly allocation and monetary aids.

 

“Our rich culture like Sango festival is enough to earn us foreign currencies if well promoted and given the right support. The present administration is ready to work with the Iku Baba Yeye, Alaafin of Oyo, our revered father, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi 111, to see to the possibility of gaining another millage in generating revenue from cultural tourism through cultural festivals like Sango festival.

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“We shall continue to support this and every other important festival that exhibits Yoruba culture as iconic among other cultures in Nigeria and other parts of the world. These cultural celebrations are in themselves capable of giving the State the financial freedom we seek through agriculture, commercial development by revamping abandoned State-owned companies and invitation to foreign investors to come and establish businesses here.”

Olatunbosun sought the support of the people of the State for the success of the Makinde-led administration, as according to him, if the government succeeded, the entire people of the State would have succeeded.

The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi called for collective voice of Yoruba people towards chatting a prosperous economic roadmap for the nation.

The first class royal father said the ailing economy of Nigeria needed the support of all tribes, especially Yoruba sons and daughters that have the intellectual wherewithal to help Nigeria survive her security and economic woes.

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Dangote Fertiliser commences pre-testing of $2bn plant ahead of inauguration

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Dangote Fertiliser Limited has begun countdown to the inauguration of its $2 billion Granulated Urea Fertiliser  complex located in the Dangote Free Zone.

With a capacity of 3 million tonnes per annum, the plant has been classified as the biggest project in the entire fertiliser industry history in the World. Siapem of Italy is the Engineering, Procurement and Supervision (EP) Contractor for the project, while Tata Consulting Engineers, India, is the Project Management Consultants (PMC) for the project.

At this time, several critical sections of the plant are going through various stages of pre-commissioning and test-run. Virtually all the section of the plant such as Central Control Room, Ammonia and Urea Bulk Storage, Cooling Tower, Power Generator Plant, Granulation Plant, have all been completed and are going through pre-testing.

Already, Dangote Feritiser has started receiving gas supply from the Nigerian Gas Company and Chevron Nigeria Limited under the Gas Sale and Purchase was Agreement to supply 70 million standard cubic feet per day (Scf/d) of natural gas to Dangote Fertiliser Limited.

The project, which will create thousands of direct and indirect jobs in construction and related fields, will provide a major boost to the agricultural sector by significantly reducing the importation of fertiliser in Nigeria and ultimately removing the need for imports when plant is in full production.

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Group Executive Director, Strategy, Portfolio Development & Capital Projects, Dangote Industries Limited,  Devakumar Edwin said Nigeria will be able to save $0.5billion from import substitution and provide $0.4 billion from exports of products from the fertiliser plant. “Thus, the supply of fertiliser from the plant, will be enough for the Nigerian market and neighbouring countries,” he said.

Edwin said:  “I am happy that by the time our plant is fully commissioned, the country will become self sufficient in fertiliser production and even have the capacity to export the products to other African countries. Right now, farmers are forced to utilise whatever fertiliser that is available as they have no choice, but we need to know that the fertiliser that will work in one State may not be suitable in another State, as they may not have the same soil type and composition. The same fertiliser you use for sorghum may not be the fertiliser you will use for sugar cane.”

He stated that the Dangote fertiliser project, which is estimated to gulp $2billion is the largest granulated Urea fertiliser complex to emerge in the entire fertiliser industry history in the world, with its three million tonnes per annum capacity.

He pointed out that the fertiliser complex, which is sited on 500 hectares of land has the capacity to expand as it is only occupying a small fraction of the allotted portion.

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Edwin added: “The management of the complex are confident that the fertiliser business will deliver reasonable profit to the company and its shareholders as it is projected that population growth and the need for food production will jack up the consumption of Urea fertiliser beginning from 2020 when production of the production would have commenced in earnest.

“The current consumption of Urea estimated at a dismal 700,000 tonnes per annum by Nigerian farmers is said to be due to very poor usage and is believed to be the cause of poor product yield, which threatens food security in the country.

“By 2020, Nigerian population is projected to increase to about 207 million which would lead to increased food production. Estimates points out that around five million tonnes of fertilisers are required per year in Nigeria in the next five to seven years bifurcated into 3.5 million tonnes  of Urea and 1.5 million tonnes of NPK while current production levels in Nigeria are at 1.6 million tonnes by 2019.”

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Aje  Festival  2020: Ooni wants government to spread wealth through trade, investment policies

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The Arole Oduduwa, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II, has urged government at all levels to raise the standard of living of citizenry through favourable economic policies.

Ooni, the Co-Chairman of National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria (NCTRN) gave the charge during the 2020 edition of the annual celebration of Aje Festival at his Ile-Oodua palace, on Monday in Ile-Ife.

Ooni Ogunwusi who is the natural father of the entire Yoruba race worldwide decried the current economic condition of the country which he described as pathetic, adding that the country’s wealth must be be enjoyable to all Nigerians.

“As it stands today, Nigeria has a population of few men and women controlling the economy while countless others are languishing in poverty. We cannot continue like this.

“For us to progress as a country, we must ensure that our wealth goes round especially to the poor and other vulnerable members of the society. We cannot keep having strikingly rich few Nigerians and uncountable ones wallowing in abject poverty.” The Ooni decried.

While explaining the basis for the Aje Festival celebrations, the African foremost monarch explained that it is a unique way through which the Yoruba people globally remember the deity which is known for wealth and riches.

“Aje is a deity which is known for wealth and riches. Its annual celebration as you have witnessed today is to acknowledge its relevance to us as people, especially its indispensable nature to us.

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“Did you see the struggle for it during the procession to and from the Aje temple? That is the spirit of Aje, all of us are not rich because it is not easy to accumulate wealth.

“We are not devaluing the currency by spraying it to our people, we only do it on a special day like this to spread happiness. In the olden days, it was cowries, sometimes ago it was coins, nowadays it is naira notes and we hold it in a very high esteem.” The Ooni noted.

Coordinator of Aje Festival, Princess Toyin Kolade while briefing newsmen expressed happiness for the massive turnout of participants from within and outside Nigeria. She thanked the Ooni for the opportunity, pledging her commitment to the development of the prestigious Yoruba cultural heritage.

Similarly, the Lowa Adimula of Ife, High Chief Adekola Adeyeye, described the 2020 Aje festival celebration as the best in history, thanking the Ooni for uphold the cultural values of Ile Ife and Yorubaland. He added that the Ooni has rebranded the ancient city positively to the world, praying that God Almighty will support him in realising the greater Ife Kingdom of his dream.

The Obaluru Oranfe, Oba Isoro Abiodun Molato said “Aje is a goddess that provides Wealth and Fortune for People. She was among the 401 deities sent to the world by Olodumare .
Her primary assignment was to ensure a smooth transition of the country’s economy. For this, she is always being celebrated and commemorated by the people of Ife and other tribes of Yoruba so as to laud and epitomize her past good deeds and also how she has diligently improved people’s welfarism and the commerce of the country”.

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Speaking on behalf of the international participants, Mr. Rodrigo Abdon from Brazil described the festival as awesome representation of the African rich cultural heritage.

“What I see here today has further represented the economic potentials of the enviable Yoruba cultural heritage and Africa at large. I see arts, I see dance, I see music, I see paintings and many others like we have in Brazil. The people are also receptive, very accommodating and it shows the good nature of the land. We are really feeling at home”Mr. Rodrigo noted.

The traditional rulers who graced the epoch cultural event are; Alapomu of Apomu, Oba Adenekan Afolabi, Ajero of Ijero-Ekiti, Oba Joseph Adewole, Olugbon of Ile-Igbon, Oba Olusola Alao, Onigogo of Igogo-Ekiti, Oba Sunday Adewumi, Elerinmo of Erinmo-Ijesa, Oba Michael Ajayi, Onigbaye of Igbaye, Oba Morounfoye Okunola, Olubogun of Ibogun-Ifo, Oba Fakayode Faluade, Aragberi of Oragberi, Oba Funso Makanju, Oloba of Oba-Ile, Oba Adekunle Oyeyemi, Eburu of Iba, Oba Adeogun Ogunoye, Onitetiku of Owode-Ota, Oba Wasiu Ogungbayi, Asoya of Ile-Isoya, Oba Muraina Adedini, Obalufe of Iremo-Ife, Oba Idowu Adediwura and a host of others

The former Ogun State Governor, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, Consular General of Brazilian Embassy in Nigeria, Helge’s Samuel Bandeira, several traditional rulers and Nollywood stars including Adewale Eleso, Iya Rainbow, Lanre Hassan(Iya Awero) and Saheed Balogun others dignitaries witnessed the event while the Apala music maestro, Musiliu Haruna Isola thrilled the guests.

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FRCN denies harassing NUJ President in Ibadan

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Chairman, Nigeria Union of journalists, NUJ, FRCN,  Ibadan Chapel, Alhaji Nafiu Busari on Wednessday urged the public to disregard an information making the round that his members assaulted the union’s president, Chief Chris Isiguzo.

The chairman described the report as unprofessional and barbaric in nature, just as he implored the group that wrote the story to take time to upgrade their journalism skills to avoid dishing false information to the public.

In a statement made available to Mega Icon Magazine, Busari explained that the  national president, Chris isiguzo and his entourage had  earlier informed the management of their intentions of paying courtesy call on Tuesday, 25th February.

” On arrival, they came with Demola Babalola who has been facing legal charges on his eligibility to participate in NUJ election.

” My members held a congress earlier in the day and resolved that Babalola, and other syndicates were not expected in the station”, he said.

Busari added that the president with his entourage were welcomed by the FRCN management while others were politely informed that they were not welcomed.

“The  Zonal Director, Alhaji Muhammed Bello gave a warm welcome to NUJ President and the meeting was fulfilling as Isiguso described Alhaji Bello as a good union man.

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“If there was any rancor, it would be reflected in the pictures, NUJ delegation were comfortable as they even left with souvenir of FRCN.

” My members are decent and professional, I understand where the story is coming from and I understand their plights.

“We have a matter in court and we are determined to see that justice prevails. No matter how long.

“The public should disregard the information, the reality will soon be revealed to the public”, the statement concluded.

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