Kwara to pri­ori­tise arts, cul­ture in 2020

The Punch - - EDUCATION - Tunde Oyekola

Gov­er­nor Ab­dul­rah­man Ab­dul­razaq of Kwara State has hinted that his ad­min­is­tra­tion give top pri­or­ity to the de­vel­op­ment of the cul­ture sec­tor in the state in the cur­rent year.

Speak­ing in offa dur­ing the 8th Ijakadi Fes­ti­val held last Satur­day at the olofa Sta­dium, Ab­dul­razaq said a part of the 2020 bud­get would be ded­i­cated to pro­mot­ing the rich cul­tural her­itage and fes­ti­vals of the peo­ple of the state.

He said to the res­i­dents of offa, “The Ijakadi Fes­ti­val, for ex­am­ple, typ­i­fies your re­silience and in­ge­nu­ity as a peo­ple and this has con­tin­ued to make you crit­i­cal stake­hold­ers in the so­cio-eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal space of Kwara State. I urge you to never re­lent in this re­gard be­cause healthy com­pe­ti­tion – de­void of de­struc­tive jeal­ousy – is key to de­vel­op­ment.

“The 2020 bud­get con­tains pro­vi­sions to pro­mote our cul­tural her­itage as Kwarans, as well as to project our fes­ti­vals to the world, as part of our ef­forts to make tourism a ma­jor rev­enue earner for the state.”

Also speak­ing at the fes­ti­val, the olofa of offa, oba Mufu­tau Gbadamosi (es­u­woye II), who an­nounced the conferment of a tra­di­tional ti­tle of “Asolud­ero” on Ab­dul­razaq, said that the gov­er­nor had made his­tory as the first to at­tend the event since it be­gan eight years ago.

The monarch said, “I gave him the tra­di­tional ti­tle of Solud­ero (the com­forter of offa Land) be­cause his at­ten­dance shows his love for cul­ture and com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment

“This is the eighth edi­tion of Ijakadi fes­ti­val and His ex­cel­lency is the first Gov­er­nor to at­tend this pro­gramme. I’m giv­ing him the ti­tle of Solud­ero of offa Land. That’s a mark of our ap­pre­ci­a­tion for your com­ing.

“This event is about our love for eq­uity, jus­tice and fair­ness. We have al­ways shown the way not only in Kwara but in North­ern Nige­ria. We are al­ways help­ing our com­mu­nity,” the olofa said.

High­light of the fes­ti­val was the tra­di­tional wrestling con­test be­tween the olofa and eesa, one of his high chiefs, which was won by oba Gbadamosi, as well as the hor­i­zon­tal slic­ing of a piece of yam into two equal parts, among oth­ers.

•Ab­dul­razaq

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