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News - South West - Oyo Updated: May 22, 2024

Committee for World Sango Oyo Festival inaugurated by Makinde

By Francis Ezediuno
May 22, 2024
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Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has inaugurated the Local Organising Committee for the annual Works Sango Oyo Festival.

Inaugurating the committee on Tuesday in Ibadan, Governor Makinde also reiterated his commitment to creating an atmosphere for religious harmony in the state.

While inaugurating the committee, Makinde, who spoke through his Deputy, Barrister Bayo Lawal, noted that his government would support every religion.

He assured the committee of maximum support and robust engagement with a view to making the festival more attractive to both the local and international communities.

He noted that as a mark of honour for traditional worshippers, the current administration had declared August 20 every year as a public holiday to celebrate Isese Day.

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He said: “I thank all of you for working earnestly to achieve a common goal. The foundation of our living is our culture, our tradition. Even if you have been to Vatican City where the Pope lives several times, if you are black, you are still black. It does not change you from who you are.

“When we were campaigning, our people were hammering on Isese Day and we thank God that this administration and other administrations in the South West states of Nigeria declared August 20 of every year as Isese Day. This is an achievement for all of us.

“It is so gladdening that we have devotees of Sango here. We have Ogun worshippers. We have Yemoja worshippers. There are Laalu and Oya worshippers too. Osun worshippers too are here. I welcome all of you. This government is for everybody. So, the government will cater and look after everybody and religion.

“That is why the forthcoming Sango Festival will be embraced by this administration and we will give the Local Organising Committee necessary support.

“It is also gladdening to know that Sango Festival has been listed by UNESCO, which has made it become a world-class festival.”

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Earlier in his opening remarks, the state commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Dr Wasiu Olatunbosun, said, the World Sango Oyo Festival would commence on August 8, 2024, while the grand finale would be held on August 17, 2024 at Alaafin Palace, Oyo town, noting that, part of the activities earmarked for the festival is to propagate some of the works of the late Duro Ladipo, who was the founder of Sango promotion, with a symposium to be held in Ibadan.

He hinted that the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO has enlisted the Sango Oyo Festival in the lists of World Heritage which has ranked Oyo State as a giant in the tourism and culture industry.

Speaking, the Desk Officer, International Cultural Relations Department, Federal Ministry of Arts, Culture and Creative Economy, Niyi Emmanuel, thanked Governor Makinde for the opportunity to promote Sango festival and other cultural heritage in the state, pledging maximum support to the success of the programme.

The Co-Chairman of the Local Organising Committee, who is also the Cultural Ambassador to Alaafin of Oyo, Dr Paula Gomez, said Sango festival has become a world heritage which is celebrated in 42 countries of the world, adding that the festival is a good potential for tourism, to increase revenue for the state.

While appreciating the state government for promoting culture, she explained that different countries of the world are interested to come to Oyo town and participating in the festival as scheduled, noting that the event is not just for Sango but to showcase the rich history of Nigeria’s cultural diversity and the importance of cultural element to the world.

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Francis Ezediuno

Francis Ezediuno is a journalist who is self thought on application of social media in news gatherin...

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