Home Entertainment 2019 Osun Osogbo kicks off with Walk for Osun, as Ataoja calls for more government presence

2019 Osun Osogbo kicks off with Walk for Osun, as Ataoja calls for more government presence

by newshubmag

From Kehinde Ifakunle, Osogbo

This year’s Osun Osogbo festival has kicked off with a rally tagged Walk for Osun.

The walk which commenced from the palace of the Ataoja in the heart of Isale Osun in the state capital saw the people moving through Isale Osun, to Aiyetoro down to Sabo, then through Asubiaro and back to the palace of the Monarch .

The Ataoja of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Olanipekun Oyetunji who later received guests consisting of devotees from Diaspora and Nigerians from across the country blessed the worshippers as they paid homage to the traditional ruler. 

Addressing newsmen shortly after receiving residents of the town and devotees who thronged out on a road show tagged ‘Walk For Osun’ to herald the commencement of the 2019 Osun Osogbo Festival, the Ataoja called on the government to devote  more resources to the uplift of the UNESCO world heritage site, the Osun Osogbo Groove. 

Oba Oyetunji stressed that “more resources committed to renovation and upgrading of the  groove will help promote tourism which will in turn generate wealth for the state and the nation at large.”

Oba Jimoh Oyetunji used the occasion to debunk the rumour that Osun had been sold out stating that Osun Osogbo is a spiritual deity and an emissary of God which cannot be sold or bought by anybody. “In fact, it is not a physical property,” he said . 

‘I want people to realise that the festival of Osun will come up in August 2019 as we usually celebrate every year, that is why we are starting that of this year with a special program which is Walk for Osun.

“The people living in Osogbo comprising all ethnic groups now have moved round Osogbo to tell the people that Osun still remains where it had been since the time of Larooye Gbadewolu, the first Ataoja of Osogbo who came in contact with the Spirit and the Spirit commanded him by way of covenant that it will be supporting him in his quest to make the town develop and grow and the children that will be producing will be offsprings that will have good benefit and that his city will remain the largest in his environment which we have realised today.

“The walk is just an awareness that we are creating.The state and Federal government have really been encouraging the Osun Osogbo festival in many significant ways since it has been made an Heritage site,” the royal father explained.

He however implored government at all levels to pay more attention, especially financially, to the Grove. “I will only implore the federal government to pay more attention in terms of funding to the site to make it a site that will generate funds for the state and the nation as a whole. If the federal government supports further there will be better development for the Grove whereby there will be inlet and outlet gates separately, so that we can get people to be paying token to see the place and this will generate revenue for the government.

“We have been planning it for the past five years but we need government to embark in construction of new road that will separate the pedestal toad from that of the visitors who will come as visitors or tourists and people who want to receive blessings from Osun. So government is encouraged to promote tourism at all levels,” he said.

The consultant for the 2019 Osun Osogbo festival Toye Arulogun told newsmen that the walk for Osun is a show of the difference about this year’s festival. 

The walk according to him is to foster unity among the residents of the state . 

“You would see that apart from creating awareness ,the walk is also a statement in peace, unity and oneness among the ethnic nationality and the people of Osogbo,” Arulogun stated. 

“We are also working on a better event plan  management of people to ensure that people come and have a good time .Also we are assuring the people that despite all that is happening in Nigeria now as regards security, we are working so hard to make sure that anyone who comes for this festival is safe and everything goes peacefully,” he assured. 

The  2019 Osun Osogbo festival is expected to have various programs such as the Iwopopo (Traditional cleaning of the city) ,The Osun festival Youth Symposium (ONSU),The Lighting of the Mystic 16 Points Lamp known as the Olojumerindinlogun ,the Iboriade (Ataajo’s crown Assemblage), Ayo Olopon Contest amongst others before the grand finale which is the Grand procession to the groove. 

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