Olojo Festival 2020 beckons
Preparation to mark this year’s Olojo Festival in Ile-Ife, Osun State, is said to be underway. But there are indications that the festival might not be an elaborate one, considering the social distancing protocol occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last year’s edition was grand and still very fresh in the memory of many who attended. As expected, self-acclaimed Fuji lord, Kwam 1, added fun and razzamatazz to the event, as many could not stop asking for more special songs from him.
The weeklong event is scheduled to hold between September 19 and October 5, with a series of outlined activities.
As usual, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Adeyeye Ogunwusi, would open the event with his seven-day seclusion in the Ile-Odua court before wearing the historical Aare crown, followed by a long list of programmes.
A street carnival, dubbed Gbajure, would take people round the designated routes and streets within the precincts of Ife town, with several important sons and daughters billed to attend essentially to give clout and credence to the glorious outing.
To herald the yearly festival, Oba Ogunwusi would receive the procession of Ogun, Sango and Osun worshippers and other gods of the land to pay homage to the kingdom before other activities, such as workshops for youths, football competitions, traditional games, fashion shows and traditional music night.
On the seventh day, which is the grand finale of the event, Ooni is expected to receive a large number of people, including visitors, tourists and culture enthusiasts from all over the world.
The yearly festival, which is known for its socio-cultural gains for the people of the old Ife Kingdom, has contributed tremendously to the historic values of the Yoruba heritage and is one of the festivals celebrated in Ile-Ife.
Olojo, as a spectacle, provides a good understanding of Yoruba myth, history, belief and the ceremonial significance of the ancient town. It is about the hero Ogun, a personality with enormous wealth and political powers.
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