Legends, families, commend Oyetola as Osun govt honours 38 cultural icons

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By Abimbola Abatta, Osogbo

The State Government of Osun, on Thursday, honoured 38 Cultural Icons, cutting across the fields of entertainment, tourism and even sports.

The recognition, which covered both living and dead icons, was part of the highlights of the unveiling of the Osun State tourism master plan for Culture and Tourism for Sustainable Economy, and Osun Sterling Tourism Vision 30-30.

Speaking at the event, Bola Oyin-Adejobi, the son of the deceased legendary actor, Pa Oyin Adejobi, lauded the Governor and the government of the State of Osun for recognizing the efforts and contributions of his father to the promotion of the Yoruba culture in his days.

Oyin-Adejobi said: “Going by what we saw today, this is really good and commendable. A lot of people that have paid their dues and put in their best, people that have sacrificed their all for the growth and preservation of our culture, have been forgotten in this same country. Yet, this government has decided to honour some legends like our Father. Seeing this, we the children are motivated and hopeful that things can get better. In fact, it is a wake-up call that things are getting better.

“On behalf of the family of Baba Oyin Adejobi, we appreciate the Governor of Osun and the organisers of this event. This recognition gives us a sense of belonging that the efforts of our father were never forgotten.

“I implore other governments to emulate this kind of gesture, and especially for it to be sustained in this State,” Oyin-Adejobi said.

Mrs Adedoyin Alabi Olosun-Faniyi, Yeye Osun, representing the Late Madam Susan Wenger (Adunni Olorisa) and the Adunni Olorisa Trust, commended Governor Oyetola’s recognition of the departed and living legends of culture, stating that the gesture will motivate the younger generation.

Yeye Osun said: “It is a good thing that the government has done today to honour those who have done well. People die but their works don’t die. The government should always remember legends who have served well in our communities. It will motivate those who have served and the future generation. That’s a viable way of preserving professions and culture from losing relevance and subsequently fading into extinction”.

Pa Rabiu Adeleke Ademola, an Aluminium and Copper Repousse Artist, commended the government of the State of Osun for remembering him and other legends who have paid their dues to preserve and promote the culture of the Yoruba race.

Adeleke said he believes that the State of Osun has laid a foundation through the recognition, and called on the government at various levels to build on the gesture of the Government of Osun.

He also prayed for the prosperity of the administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola, adding that he will not labour in vain.

Another recipient, Fakeye Rasheed Oladele, the first child of Late Professor Lamidi Fakeye, commended Governor Oyetola’s action in recognizing the works of cultural heroes, despite the numerous issues contending for his attention.

“I am highly elated and I give God the glory. Baba is no more but his legacy still speaks and his children are not doing badly. Sincerely, for this kind of recognition, I can’t thank the State government enough on behalf of the family.

“We are particularly grateful that this recognition is coming at this time. The award, the Ori Olokun symbol, is a fantastic one that portrays our culture; that makes it even more appealing to me,” Fakeye stated.

Chief Olabode Adeniyi, the Sanoro of Igbajo Land, also commenting on the recognition of cultural heroes, appreciated the gesture and discretion of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola, adding that he has proven repeatedly that he means business.

Adeniyi said: “Seriously, this is a government that means business. A government that promises and citizens can rest assured of the fulfilment of what it has promised.

“People knew Osun as a Civil Service State all the years, but people lose sight of the fact that the cultural heritage of the State can hardly be surpassed by other States. What this government did was to bring culture to the limelight, and by doing this successfully, it has tapped into another untapped resource of the State.

“Governor Oyetola has discovered another source of income for the State of Osun, and we can only hope that in another five to ten years, Osun State will be a cynosure of the nation.

“The recognition is a good motivation. This will further inspire people with a cultural endowment to come up with ideas that help the State and the nation at large to develop.

“People that have contributed to the cultural sophistication of the country are being appreciated today. These people have followers who are watching closely the actions of the government. With this, the observers will realise that the government appreciate their predecessors and that they also will want to follow in the steps of their predecessors.

“This government of the State of Osun has really done well, and I can say that confidently,” Adeniyi stated.