The National Coordinator of Oodua People’s Congress OPC, and the Chief Promoter of Olokun Festival Foundation, Otunba Gani Adams has called on the Federal Government through the minister of information, Ahaji Lai Muhammed to take the good advantage of Osun Osogbo festival to showcase Nigeria to the entire world .
Just as he described continuous absence of the Minister and Director General s of agencies saddled with the responsibilities of promoting of culture and tourism at cultural events as a bad development that will not help the growth of tourism and promotion of culture in the country.
Otunba Adams posits that the presence of minister or other agencies included INTDC, CBAAC, NCAC and others in charge of culture and tourism will give them an insight into what is happening on the field, assist them in policy formulations and how they can make meaningful contributions to the development of culture and tourism in the country.
“They have to be active participants, if they are really serious about promoting tourism, they cannot achieve anything sitting down in their offices and playing lip service to tourism and culture promotion” he said .
Otunba Adams while speaking with journalists at the Olokun Festival Foundation stand at Osun Osogbo fesctival held at Laaro primary school , Asubiaro, Isale Osun in Osogbo on Saturday also maintained that “ Apart from having direct observation of the festival procession, their presence will also attract more local and foreign tourists and other stakeholders to the events.
“ It is not a festival of such magnitude like Osun Osogbo that will not have the presence of the Minister and Director General of other agencies in charge of tourism or their representatives or a powerful delegations to the event, it is not good.
He however reiterate the commitment of Olokun festival foundation to promotion of cultural events both at home and in the diaspora, presently we have about 36 cultural events under the foundation and they are celebrated annually, to us it is a way of contributing to the growth of tourism and promotion of our cultural heritage and at the same time boost the economic development of the nation especially in a community where such events is being held.
While speaking on Osun Osogbo festival, the newly installed Agbaakin of Osogbo maintained that , the annual event is not just an ordinary festival, but one that has evolved overtime to become a reference point, it has become a compass to show cultural direction and re-establish that we are no charlatans, but with pedigree and culture that the entire world can identify with and embrace
The festival has the potential to grow beyond where it is at the moment, it has the capacity to attract the largest gathering of human beings around the world if we play our parts vey well.
“ It won’t be out of place to say that we can surpass the achievements of the well known festivals like the Rio Festival in Brazil, Oktobefest, Munich, Germany, and the Chinese new year festival in China among others if we work hard”.
In a similar development the Europe coordinator of Oodua Progressive Union OPU, Akogun Victor Adewale in his brief remark charges commended members of the sister organizations OPC under the leadership of Otunba Gani Adams to the promotion of culture and tourism event in the country and urge them not to relent in their bid to use cultural events and festivals to develop Yorubaland
Several traditional dancers and musicians entertained the guests while dignitaries including local and foreign tourists graced the occasion.
In the same vein, a veteran journalist cum socialite, Chief Femi Davies, also urged members of Oodua People’s Congress to give all the necessary financial support to the organization, he says, no organization triumph without financial backing.
Others personalities who graced the occasion are, HRM Oba Abdul Yusuf Olasunkanmi, Olupasa of Ipasa, Oyo State, a very popular Nollywood Actor, Ambassador Yomi Fash Lanso, Akogun Gani Kayode Balogun, The Publisher of GKB News Digest, Chief (Mrs) Fafunke Olagbaju, Yeye Osun of Lagos, Prince Lookmon Ayodeji, Sango of Africa, National Coordinating Council members of Oodua People’s Congress