Thousands of Osun devotees, indigenes, groups, associations and ethnic nationalities at the weekend trooped out in their large numbers to participate in the Walk for Osun, a carnival procession of stakeholders in Osogbo to herald the 2019 Osun Osogbo festival.
Leading the walk from Better life – Ahmadiya – Oja Oba junction – Obate – Sabo junction – Balogun Agoro – Isale Aro – Jolayemi – Isale Osun to the Ataoja palace, the Governor of Osun State, Mr. Gboyega Oyetola said that the state government would provide adequate security during the celebration of the festival, assuring that the government will continue to continue to support and enhance the quality of Osun Osogbo and bring in more people to participate.
Mr. Oyetola disclosed that record shown that the festival attracts different people from near, far and wide and in the diaspora, noting that the government has brought new tourist product, Karaole Odua which will be used to bring Yorubas in the diaspora to Yorubaland so that they will come home to know their source.
The governor, who was represented by the Supervisor in charge of the Home Affairs, Culture and Tourism Ministry, Dr Obawale Adebisi, said, “our effort is to plan strategically to bring them (Yorubas) home on annual basis between 10-21th of August during the celebration of Osun Osogbo Festival. It will enhance the quality of Osun Osogbo and bring in more people to partake. “
The governor reiterated that he would drive the state economy with tourism and his administration would continue to take active part in the annual Osun Osogbo festival and other festivals, stating, “what we are doing today is to ensure that we give necessary support to the community and we also get maximum support in return for government programmes and policies.
“The festival every year brings millions of Naira to Nigeria. Though not directly to the purse of the state government but we are planning on capturing more data and register participants so that it can bring in revenue to the purse of the state government,” Governor Oyetola said.
In his address while receiving the participants of the walk at the palace, the Ataoja of Osogboland, Oba Jimoh Oyetunji, said that the insinuation that Osun deity had been sold was fallacy, explaining that the Walk for Osun was to create awareness for the people that the Osun Osogbo festival 2019 was around the corner.
According to Oba Oyetunji, “usually, the celebration of Osun Osogbo festival commences by cleaning of the town calledIwopopo whereby citizens of Osogbo and tourists gather to do the task. But this one is a special occasion, special in the sense that it is awareness to the public that the alleged stolen spirit of Osun is fallacy. Osun deity remains there and we started this year’s own with Walk For Osun, where everyone regardless of the ethnic group came to me and we moved round Osogbo to tell people that Osun remains where she is.
“Osun Osogbo is a very significant festival. There is the involvement of UNESCO, which has made the site a World Heritage one. This places Osun Osogbo on the world map as a tourism destination and the federal, state and local government have shown enthusiasm in promoting Osun Festival. The state government is nearer to me and the celebration of the festival is not done only done by the Ataoja, its custodian, and its people but in collaboration with the Osun State Government and they have been upright,” he added.
Speaking, the Managing Consultant of the firm managing and marketing the festival, Mr. Toye Arulogun commended the Federal and the State governments for their relentless efforts of improving on the security situation in the country, pointing out that the insecurity was not terribly bad as being painted.
Arulogun said that the Walk for Osun was an element of contemporary that was introduced the celebration of the festival in 2019, explaining, “today, thousands of people walked with us to herald the celebration of 2019 Osun Osogbo festival. The walk signifies peace and unity between different ethnic groups. What we are bringing in is an element of contemporary, as we cannot do anything about the tradition.
Oyepeju to unveil Ara Foundation in Ibadan
Ibadan – born industrialist, Alhaji Ademola Oyepeju is poised to officially launch the Ara Foundation, a Non- Governmental Organization birthed to support the less – privileged.
The event, which is billed to hold December 5 at Scrolab Hotel, Oke – Ado in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital will also feature celebration of founder’s birthday, presentation of awards to some eminent personalities, scholarship for indigent students and empowerment program.
Dignitaries expected to grace the ocassion include : the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji Aje Ogunguniso 1, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Chief Bayo Adelabu, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2019 election.
Others are: Chief Oyegade Oyepeju, Alhaji Amadu Zungeru, Sarkin Hausawa of Ibadan, Chief Sunday Adeyemo (Sunday Igboho), Sheik Muyideen Ajani Bello, Hon Muse Ariyo, Pastor Kayode Akinola, Alhaji Taofeek Babatunde, Prince Abass Aleshinloye, Alhaji Taofeeq , Tao Onibata, Professsor Abideen Olaiya and Rev Mrs Olaiya, among others.
Oyepeju, in a statement signed on Thursday, explained that the foundation was founded in 2018 and it is duly registered with the government.
The business magnate also added that since its establishment, the foundation has lifted many poor people to a better state through financial aid to petty traders, schorlarship for indigent students in tertiary institutions , donation of tools and equipment for artisans to boost their businesses among others .
He emphasized the need for all levels of government to embark on more programs to alleviate poverty, unemployment and insecurity especially among youths.
According to him, “the focus of the foundation is beyond humanitarian services but a ploy to enhance growth and advancement of the society through extension of helping hands to the needy and idle hands who may later became devil’s instrument.
“The increasing number of people with no clear cut jobs is alarming and dangerous for the society and to prevent total collapse the needy should be supported and engage “, Oyepeju noted.
The industrialist, however advised youths to shun violence and channel their energy and talents towards national development.
Senator Buhari expresses joy as National Assembly passes bill establishing Federal University of Agriculture, Oke Ogun
It was all joy for the Senator representing Oyo North Senatorial District, Dr. Abdulfatai Buhari as he could not hide his happiness as the National Assembly on Wednesday passed the bill seeking the establishment of Federal University of Agriculture and Technology, Oke Ogun.
The bill, sponsored by Senator Buhari which is now awaiting the Presidential assent has successfully passed through the legislative processes with a strong hope that it shall enjoy the the assent of President Muhammodu Buhari soonest.
The lawmaker, in a telephone conversation described today as one of his happiest days on earth.
He specifically thanked God for making the legislative processes of having the citadel of learning in Oke Ogun, a success.
In his words, “I thank God, I’ve played my roles and I’m sure, Insha Allah, the President will assent to the bill and it shall manifest soonest”.
It will be recalled that on 25th of April 2017 and 7th November, 2017, the bill to establish the Federal University of Agriculture and Technology, Oke Ogun, Oyo State passed the first and second reading respectively after which the bill was referred to the Committee on Tertiary Education.
On the 14th of November 2019 , Senator AbdulFatai Buhari represented the bill and after it passed the second reading, it was again referred to the Committee on Tertiary Education and Monday 20 July, 2020 was fixed for the public hearing.
The public hearing was held successfully with a clear indication that it will be passed by the National Assembly.
The APC chieftain who promised to facilitate Federal institution into the region noted that the institution will enhance development and create employment opportunities for the indigenes and residents of his senatorial district and the state at large.
He made the promise during his electioneering campaign, considering the zone as an agrarian community.
Oyo APC expresses readiness for December 12 membership registration exercise
As the December 12, 2020 date announced for the commencement of the All Progressives Congress’ membership registration and revalidation exercise approaches, the Oyo state chapter of the party has expressed its readiness and preparedness for the exercise as it called on those “external forces planning to polarize the party in the state for selfish reasons to stay away or be ready to lick their own wounds.
The Yobe State Governor, Mallam Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) had on Monday announced the commencement of the party membership registration and revalidation. According to the Committee, the four weeks exercise has been scheduled to take place simultaneously in all the wards in the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) between December 12, 2020 and January 9, 2021.
Oyo APC, in a statement issued on Wednesday and made available to journalists in Ibadan by its Assistant Publicity Secretary, Prince Ayobami Adejumo, opined that ” the planned exercise was critical to the future of the party as it was necessary for all stakeholders comprising APC leadership at all levels, genuine democrats and patriots to play their part and ensure the exercise record a huge success.
“In Oyo APC, all hands are on deck to deliver on the mandate as we are already putting in place the necessary arrangement to accommodate both the teeming existing and prospective members across the 351 Wards in the state. The Chief Akin Oke-led Executive Committee will leave no stone unturned to make the atmosphere conducive for all stakeholders and supporters of our great party to work together and come up with accurate data bank for party faithful as desired.
“Meanwhile, it is equally pertinent to make a strong appeal to our Party’s national headquarters not to give any room for saboteurs and divisive elements who might want to compromise the smooth conduct of the exercise in Oyo state. As it stands now, the question of individuals or groups trying to outdo one another is not expected before and during the exercise because the goal of membership registration and revalidation goes beyond self aggrandizement or settling of scores among gladiators.
“This time, we would not close our eyes at the possible incursion of some external forces backed by some over zealous political players within the APC who are still hell bent of sponsoring crisis in Oyo APC for their own selfish ends ahead of the next general elections. As a matter of fact, the national leadership of our great party is being put on notice that we are capable of handling the exercise as one united family because stakeholders are aware of the task before the party in the state.
“What is more important to us is how to ensure that every willing person is captured in the party’s data base regardless of their location and physical status before the end of it all. The situation in Oyo state now indicates that electorate would be willing to return us to power again in 2023 as doing so would afford them the opportunity to have unhindered access to public safety, improved infrastructure, clean environment, prosperity among other basic things which the current PDP administration has shown that it lacked the capacity to provide”, the statement read.
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