Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Aare Gani Adams, on Tuesday, gave reasons for the celebration of Eledumare festival.
Speaking at the grand finale of the festival held at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, Adams, restated the need for the Yorubas to celebrate God by organizing a festival solely for the Supreme Being.
He said the 8th edition of the festival began 21 days ago, with a series of activities, including Harvest of Praise, Football Competition and Fashion Show among others. The event, he added, was climaxed with the grand finale.
“God is worthy of worship, praise is the only key that opens all doors. Our organization, the Oodua People’s Congress,( OPC), the Olokun Festival Foundation,( OFF),is the only group that celebrates Eledumare Festival and I am indeed, very grateful to God that we are all alive to witness this glorious day. Considering the tremendous growth in our group, most especially, on the strength of our group in the Diaspora, the Oodua Progressive Union (OPU), in 79 countries in the world, I am pleased to tell you that our best is yet to come”, he stated.
Adams also harped on the need to promote the Yoruba Language and identity, saying about 28 universities in the world studies the Language.
He also charged the government, particularly, in the southwest states to promote sports and agriculture, by establishing what he named Southwest Agric Commission (SWAC).
“By this, we can leverage on the agricultural potentials in the west. I have it on good authority that Lagos state alone consumes between 13,000 and 15,000 cows daily, totaling about 3billion naira, while other states in the southwest also consume about 10,000 cows totaling 2billion naira daily. These are huge investments that we can leverage on. We can, as well, develop our tourism and sports by establishing tourists’ centres like the cinemas and stadiums with over 7, 000, capacities in our local governments across the states. This is a strong mechanism for grassroots sports development, which can also help in reducing crime rates in the country, “he said.
The Guest lecturer, professor Oguntola Laguda, from the Lagos state University, LASU in his speech, said the Yorubas are the most cultured people in the world. He explained further that the Yorubas had a better understanding of God as the creator of heaven and earth long before the introduction of Islam and Christian religious into the country. “In the past and up to the present moment, the Yorubas have a way of communicating with God who they call by different names such as Eledumare, Olu Orun, Eleda,and Aseda.
There are other names too numerous to mention. These names simply tell us the various attributes of God as the supreme being.” He urged the Yoruba leaders, including teachers in all the schools in the south west to join Aare Gani Adams in his bid to promote all the unique identities of the race.
Basorun of Oyo, High Chief Ayoade, Zaki of Arigidi, Oba Yisa Olanipekun, The Onigbaye of Igbaye in Osun State,Oba Moronfoye Joseph, representatives of Ojora of Ijora and Iganmu,Oba Fatai Aromire, the Eze Ndigbo of Lagos state, and other top Igbo chiefs across the states, Former Commissioner for chieftaincy affairs in Oyo state, Prince Adeleke Ajala, as well as all members of the National Coordinating Council of the OPC, and other prominent dignitaries were present at the occasion.