Lagos Education District II Engages Students, Community In Promotion Of Yoruba Culture

Kunle Adelabu & Mariam Akinloye

Oba Semiudeen Kasali, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, Oloris Adeboruwa, Mrs Anike Adekanye, Tutor General/Permanent Secretary,Education District II in group photograph with participating students at the Adeboruwa palace, Igbogbo

The Education District II in Lagos State, under the leadership of the Tutor – Genera/Permanent Secretary (TG/PS), Mrs Anike Adekanye, has continued the pursuance of the preservation and promotion of the Yoruba culture and tradition.

The District, on Tuesday, staged the 2023 edition of the Festival of Yoruba Culture and Tradition at the Adeboruwa palace in Igbogbo, where the cultural values of the people of the Southwest, Nigeria, particularly as it regard costumes, royal paraphernalia, and other traditional and cultural materials, were on display.

There was also cultural display by schools and traditional groups which added colours to the festival. While Oreyo Grammar School, lgbogbo, performed the Bolojo dance, students of the Zumratul Islammiyah Grammar School, Igbogbo, wowed the audience with their energetic Apepe dance performance.

Also at the event, Yewa worshippers entertained the large audience that filled the Adeboruwa palace with Kori dance performance before the Egungun masquerade took the floor, followed by the Gbedu drummers (Royal drummers) whose performance drew the Tutor General, traditional Chiefs and other dignitaries to the dance floor as they could not resist the lovely enticing beats of the traditional drums.

L-R, Mr Olusegun Ogunnaike, Tutor – General/Permanent Secretary, Education District 4, Waheed Kasali, Permanent Secretary, office of the Special Adviser on Education, Oba Olalekan Ogunnaike, Alagura of Agura, Mrs Anike Adekanye, TGPS, Education District II, Oba Semiudeen Kasali, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, Olori Sekinat Kasali, and Olori Kafayat kasalu, wives of the Adeboruwa and Builder Sesan Daini, Chiarman, Igbogbo/Bayeku LCDA, at the schools’ cultural festival

Apepe group and Obatala adherents also took their turns to entertain the crowd, while their leaders also explained their origin, importance and relevance to the students.

In the local food competition among schools at the event, United Senior High School, Ikorodu, which prepared ‘Ikokore and Eba’, emerged winner, and Yewa Senior Grammar School, Ikorodu, which cooked Egusi soup with Ebiripo came second, while Lagos State Civil Service Model College, Igbogbo, emerged third, cooking Ofada rice and Tatase soup. They were all presented with gift items in recognition of their ability to cook local food.

Meanwhile, Mrs Arike Adekanye, the TG/PS, who also represented the Commissioner for Education, Mr Jamiu Alli – Balogun, at the event, speaking in an undiluted Yoruba language, said that the District is doing everything to preserve and promote Yoruba culture, especially among the youths.

She said that taking the festival to palaces afforded the students to see royal fathers who are the chief custodians of the Yoruba culture and traditions.

“The event was held at the Ayangbure palace in Ikorodu, last year and this year, we are at the Adeboruwa palace in Igbogbo. It would be the turn of Ranodu of Imota next year and thereafter, Oworonshoki, after which I will retire from the service”, she said.

Cultural performance

“All these efforts at preservation of our tradition and culture are to let our students know that we have our cultural values before the coming of the white men to Africa. Today, we are presenting our young ones the opportunity to see the beauty of our culture.

“This is an opportunity for the students to see the palace of the Adeboruwa, and also see the Kabiyesi and his chiefs, for the first time

“We have to protect our culture and tradition. We have to promote our music, dress, food and other aspects of our culture for the future”, she said.

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Mrs Adekanye, who said that she teaches Yoruba in foreign lands, emphasized the various aspects of Yoruba culture and their importance.

“Music is an important aspect of our culture. We have good and inspiring music that are good for our knowledge. We have songs full of wisdom”, she said.

“Our culture must not be allowed to go into extinction. We must teach our students how to read and write Yoruba. Yoruba is a language that is being taught in the USA and other places, because of its importance.

Another cultural performance by the students

“I teach Yoruba in America, Republic of Benin and other places, and I am being paid for it.

“Today, our students have prepared different local foods like moinmoin, amala, Iyan and others.

“In Yoruba land, we have foods that give us good health, mental alertness and other positive things”, she said.

The Tutor General/Permanent Secretary also deplored the situation where there is shortage of Yoruba teachers in schools, stating that the government is ready to employ but there are no candidates to fill the vacancies.

His Royal Majesty, Oba Semiudeen Orimadegun Kasali, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, in his royal message, thanked the teachers for taking care of their students and impart Yoruba knowledge to them.

He called for more students to study Yoruba in tertiary institutions in order to address the shortage of Yoruba teachers in schools.

Oba Kasali also called for the study of Yoruba language at home and schools, as a way of promoting the culture.

Egungun masquerade performance

He also charged students against social vices, while also urging them to be serious with their education and be good ambassadors.

Also at the event were: His Royal Majesty Oba Ahmed Moruf Ogunnaike, the Alagura of Agura, the Ayangbure of Ikorodu, Ranodu of Imota, Olubeshe of Ibeshe and Sekumade of lpakodo sent high powered delegations alongside their respective Staff of Office.

There were also Mr Waheed Kasali, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mr Ogunseye Ogunaike, Tutor – General/Permanent Secretary, Education District 4, Mr Akeem Bello, Best Principal in Nigeria, as well as traditional chiefs from various communities in Ikorodu Division, NUT Chairmen in Education District 2, Principals and Vice Principals, Yoruba teachers, NUT,lkorodu branch among others.

Mrs Adekanye beating the gangan drum during the festival of arts and culture in Igbogbo
Local food cooking competition at the festival.
Performance by the igbogbo Apepe group.
Mrs Adekanye with students at one of the cultural exhibition stands at the festival.
The Tutor – General on Apepe
Traditional chiefs and Gbedu drummers
Iyalodes andErelus at the festival.
Lakunle Ologuro serving palm wine at the festival in Igbogbo.

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