Wale Jagun & Mariam Akinloye
The First Permanent Vice Chairman, Lagos State Council of Oba s and Chiefs and the Ayangbure of Ikorodu, His Royal Majesty, Alaiyeluwa, Oba (Engr.) Kabir Adewale Shotobi, the Adegorushe, has welcomed the further recognition of the Isese Day by the State Government, with the declaration of a day as public holiday for its commemoration.
Oba Shotobi also called for more support for the traditional practitioners who, according to him, are the custodians of culture and traditions, just like the government is doing for other religions.
The Ayangbure of Ikorodu spoke with THE IMPACT, at his palace on Sunday, during the 2023 Iseses Day celebration which was well – attended by dignitaries, chiefs and different traditional and cultural groups.
At the celebration, there were spectacular displays by various traditional groups, while homages and prayers were offered to the Aayngbure.
Oba Shotobi, in his royal message at the celebration which held at the Ayangbure palace, thanked the Lagos State Government for living up to expectations, with the declaration.
The royal father also thanked the custodians of culture and tradition, for preserving the people’s heritages.
“Isese day is a recognized festival in the whole of Southwest, and we want to thank the State Government for its magnanimity in granting our request. We have been requesting from the government to grant every 20th of August as Isese Day, and as a public holiday. We want to thank them for this”, Oba Shotobi said.
“Lagos State is following suit with other states, because Ogun, Oyo and Ekiti have all granted the day as a public holiday.
“We are the custodians of culture and heritage, and I knew that Lagos State would not be found wanting in the activities of traditions in the whole of south west. So, we want to thank them for granting us this public holiday.
“lsese is important when it comes to religion. We have many practitioners who are the custodians of our culture and are doing very well in this respect. I want to thank all those that are still holding forth in preserving our deities. Isese will not go into extinction during our own time”.
“I thank many who here today, to showcase that our traditions are still in existence”.
While stating that people still cherish their culture, the royal father also called on the government to treat traditional religion as an important aspect of the society like other religions, by extending support to its custodians.
“You can see that people turned out in thousands to observe the day. It shows that they still value it”, Oba Shotobi said.
“We are all calling on the same God, as other religion practitioners, only that the ways that we approach it are different. We should not deprive one religion to favour the other.
“My expectation is for the government to continue to support traditional religion. They should extend their hands of fellowship to us the same way that they have been supporting other religions”.
Asiwaju Rotimi Erogbogbo, Chairman, Ikorodu – Oga Development Association speaking with our reporter, said that the recognition by the state government, is long overdue.
He emphasized the importance of protecting and preserving the traditions and culture of the people.
“The government recongizing Isese Day and marking a day out for it as a public holiday, is long overdue”, he said.
“In the beginning, there was only Isese before every other religions, and the argument is when you have Christmas and the Muslim celebration, the Isese people also want a day set aside for them. Isese is being practiced by the people and their tradition is important to them. When you remove people from tradition or culture, you have totally disorganised that society.
“Lagos State, today, wether we want to believe it or not, is a state that accommodates so many tribes as a melting point, but we must be able to recognise the fact that, there was an origin and there is a people who have their religion and way of life.
“The fact that Lagos State Government, today, is recognizing that, is a good step in the right direction, I must tell you without bias”, Asiwaju Erogbogbo said.
Also at the celebration were Odofin of Ikorodu Kingdom and Chairman, MultiChoice Nigeria, Odofin Adewunmi Ogunsanya, SAN, the Apena of Ikorodu, High Chief Kareem Ore, traditional chiefs, Baales, custodians of traditions and culture as well as residents.
Traditional groups at the celebration are
Iledi Osugbo Ikorodu , Itu liwe Ikorodu , Iga Eluku Ikorodu, Liworu Isele Ikorodu, Iti lulaa Alan-un, Onigunnuko Ikorodu, Iti Magbo Ikorodu, Seidu Aga Ikorodu, Ologbojeohun Ikorodu, Iseke lire Itagbodo, Iti Lowa Mefu Ikorodu, Alagemo Itun-moja Ikorodu and Awunren Itun – Nla Ikorodu
Also, Onipako Ikorodu, Iti Liworu, Aga Ikorodu, , Ologun Isese Oburoke Ikorodu, Eleluku Agbala Ikorodu, Odi Awofun Ikorodu, Eleluko Eriyo, Alasa Aga Ikorodu, Aranfo Ikorodu, Wonpari Balogun Aga Ikorodu and
Others at the 2023 Isese Day are Abilefo Ijomu Ikorodu, Iti Lasugbo Akan-un, Ifegbuwa Mowokekere Jenta, Eleyinla Aga Ikorodu, Awo-opa Gberigbe, Abilefo Itun-Nla Ikorodu, Eleluku Parafa Alagemo, Ajijasanmi Osanyangbemi, Alagemo Parafa, Iti Mosinmi, Aborigen fraternity, Iseke Lire Itagbodo, Liwe Ebute – Iga, Eleluku Isusela, Eleluku Ike Arobi, Ajo Babalawo Ikorodu, Alagemo Felefon, Olu-Oloye, Oliyepo Oke-Arobi, Iledi Awo-Agba (Igangbe), Alagemo Ojodu Ajegunle, Obaluwaye Ikorodu, Eleno Oburoke, Rolukoso Parafa, Orisadotun Isese Parapo, Association of Ogboni fraternity and
Medical Herbalist Ikorodu.
At the celebration were also, Orojomu Erunwen, Oserooloro Isele Ikorodu, Alase Ijomu Ikorodu, Oro Lepete, Orishi Ewu-Elepe,
Onitadogun Itun-moja Ikorodu, Meboyi (Aworo itun-maja) Ikorodu, Olomitutu (Isele), Olorisha Isokan, Olomitutu Osun, Alasa Isele Ikorodu, Ipebi, Olomitutu Osuntoke, Iwase Ogboni fraternity and Iti Eyita