Photo Credit: Channels

Photo Credit: Channels

Social Packages To Be Featured At 2017 Osun-Osogbo Festival


Mr Abimbola Daniyan, the Chairman, Osun State Tourism Board, disclosed on Tuesday in Abuja that the 2017 Osun-Osogbo Cultural Festival scheduled to hold in August will include social content.

He said, “The next Osun-Osogbo Festival will follow the same pattern but with some more social content.

“As you know, we are going to be having a number of Diaspora visitors who will take advantage of this year’s Sango Festival and Alaafin Oyo which comes up few days before the Osun-Osogbo Festival.

“These people will come in from Oyo to Osogbo to partake and many are coming from Oyotunji African Village, a big Yoruba Community in North Carolina in the U.S.

“A good number will also be coming from Florida in the U.S.; Latin American countries like Venezuela and others are facing political challenges; we do not expect large number from there.

“However, their coming to the festival tells us one thing about we black people; we are concerned about what is going on in other places,’’ Mr Abimbola furthered.

“Cuba is the only bright spot; they are also being challenged by the current foreign policies of the U.S.,’’ .

Daniyan noted that Cuba had contributed to the provision of structures and medical services in South Africa, Namibia, Angola and other African countries.

“They have trained about 9,000 medical doctors from Africa; this is because they believe they are part of us Africans.

“This shows that it is time for solidarity, even though it is a festival; it is also a mark of economic solidarity with our brothers and sisters from other countries.

“Let’s make our country a better place; I will love to see that before it’s time for us to go back to God,’’ Danyina stressed.

Osun-Osogbo Festival is annually celebrated in the month of August at the grove.

The festival which is characterised by two-week long programme of culture and tradition will attract thousands of Osun worshippers, spectators and tourists from all over the world.

It will be held at the illustrious and sacred Osun Grove, which was named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.

The festival was borne out of the yearly sacrifice done to celebrate the river goddess, who serves as the protector of the clan.

According to legend, when the current Osogbo community was founded seven centuries ago, the river goddess assured the people of her protection.

She also promised to bless their women with fruitfulness if they will offer a sacrifice to her annually; the contract was sealed and the sacrifices and ceremonies became a usual occurrence.

The sequences of rituals that usually kick off the celebration are the “Iwopopo Ritual’’, this is a ritual done to cleanse the city from evil.

The “Ina Olujumerindinlogun Ritual’’ involves the lighting of a 16-point lamps which is believed to be 600 years old; it is done three days after the Iwopopo ritual.

The “Iboriade Ritual’’ is when all the crowns of the past kings – Ataojas – are assembled for blessings by the sitting Ataoja of Osogbo, the “Arugba,’’ the Yeye Osun, and a committee of priestesses.

The “Arugba Ritual’’ is one of the major highlights of the festival; a calabash containing the sacrifice materials to appease and worship the goddess is carried on the head by a virgin across town.

As the virgin leads the procession to the river, the people, seeing her as a representative of the goddess, cast their problems on her and offer prayers.

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