Prominent businesswoman, Princess Toyin Kolade, the Iyalaje Oodua, has urged Nigerians to pray for the nation as the 2023 elections draw close.
Speaking at the just concluded ‘Olojo’ cultural festival 2022 in Ile-Ife, the Lagos top socialite and chief in the Oduduwa House stressed the need for peace and economic prosperity as the nation prepares to elect its new set of leadership, adding that Olodumare’s guidance was required towards choosing the right and desired government for the people for more stability, improved economy and national development.
“Nigerians must be united in seeking for solutions to the myriad of problems that are confronting us and that’s why we need to earnestly pray to Olodumare for His guidance as we hold the general election in 2023.
“As a nation, growth and development will blossom when we achieve peaceful coexistence and improved economy. We don’t want economic hardship and disunity. Olodumare has given us the instructions to collectively call on him in prayers when we face challenges. That informed why our paramount royal father, the Ooni of Ife prayed for the nation during the festival” she stated.
Princess Kolade also expressed satisfaction over the successful completion of the annual cultural fiesta which she described as very successful. The 2022 edition was tagged Culture, Tourism: The Genesis.
The Iyalaje Oodua who described the festival as an avenue to bring to the fore the values, customs and culture of Yorubaland stated that, “this age-long festival serves as a symbol of our most cherished norms and values and one of the festivals that bring the Yoruba people together.
“Like our revered royal father, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, just told us, this festival celebrates the day the Almighty, Olodumare, created the earth and that’s why all creatures of the Almighty celebrate this day with humans.”
Princess Kolade commended the Ooni of Ife for his spiritual leadership to the Yoruba race which has attracted cultural revival, trade and tourism promotion as well as general development.
THECONSCIENCEng reports that the 2022 ‘Olojo’ festival held in Ile Ife, Osun State, from Friday September 23 till Wednesday 29, 2022.
It is one of the most popular and respected festivals in Yorubaland. The festival connotes the day in the year specially blessed by ‘Olodumare’ (the creator of the universe). Prayers are offered for peace and tranquillity in Yorubaland and Nigeria.
While offering prayers for all attendees and the nation late evening on Friday September 23, the Ooni who had hitherto been in a 7-day seclusion as part of the annual traditional rites said the year’s Olojo festival was unique and very important as it marked his seventh anniversary on the throne and the number seven connotes significance.
“I have been in consultations with my forebears for the past seven days and I have heard and seen things and that’s why I pray for you today,. It is my 7th one on the throne and you know seven is quite significant” he said.
“I want everyone here this evening to believe that only Olodumare has the power both in heaven and on earth. You need to pray fervently for Olodumare’s intervention to surmount all challenges of your life,” the royal father added.
While stressing the importance of the Olojo’s festival, the Monarch revealed that the festival was initiated by Olodumare himself and all creatures who are in the vicinity of the celebration will always come around to celebrate with humans.
In his words, “this celebration is unique because we celebrate Olodumare, the Owner of Life himself and all his creatures who are in the vicinity will come around in human form to celebrate with us. So, therefore, don’t be surprised if I tell you that animals, birds even ants take up human forms to join us in celebrating this day.
On Saturday, September 24, the Oonirisa wears the sacred Aare crown which is publicly seen once yearly, and prayed for the people.
The cultural event also featured many cultural activities and fanfares including the Gbajure Cultural Carnival, Adire Oodua Cultural Possession and Children Quiz Competition, on Monday, September 19.
Other activities included the Ayo Olopon Traditional Game, Cultural Entertainment talent Hunt, Colloquium and the Grand Finale Official Ceremony, Ojo Okemogun, Aare Cultural Procession and Ojaja Grand Resort Musical Concert.
It was also an opportunity for the excited paramount ruler who was beaming with smiles to showcase his new wife, Olori Mariam Ogunwusi who gorgeously stepped out with her hubby in royal attires.
Dignitaries at the events include the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, who represented the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.); the Osun State Deputy Governor, Benedict Alabi; as well as many tourists from Brazil, traditional rulers, chiefs, socialites and other dignitaries.