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    Kingmakers decide on Olubadan today

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    BARRING unforeseen circumstances, the Olubadan-designate, Oba Owolabi Olakulehin, will be ratified to become the Olubadan of Ibadanland today by the Olubadan-in-Council and his name forwarded to the Oyo State Governor, Mr Seyi Makinde, for approval.

    The meeting is scheduled to be held at the Olubadan Palace at Oja’ba in the Ibadan South East Local Government Area of the state.

    The Otun Olubadan of Ibadanland and former governor of Oyo State, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja, had, on Wednesday, announced that the meeting, earlier scheduled for Thursday, was moved to Friday (today) in view of the public holidays.

    The meeting is expected to bring to a halt, the controversies surrounding the nomination of Oba Olakulehin, after the demise of Oba Lekan Balogun on March 14, 2024.

    Akonitv, however, gathered on Thursday that some of the Ibadan crowned Obas might not honour today’s meeting for reasons best known to them.

    A source, who did not want his name in print, said, “I may confirm to you that some of them will not honour the invitation, even though they were duly informed. None of them (the kingmakers) will deny or say he hasn’t received the message to that effect.”

    It was also gathered from another source that Oba Olakulehin may be present at the meeting today.

    All eyes are, therefore, on the kingmakers who had been duly notified of today’s meeting to ratify and pronounce Oba Olakulehin as the new Olubadan of Ibadanland.

    In line with the Ibadan chieftaincy arrangement, the nomination of the new monarch must be made by the person next to him in his line at a meeting convened by the most senior chief in the other line.

    Akonitv reports that the Otun Balogun, Oba Tajudeen Ajibola, who is next in line to the Olubadan-designate, had declared that Oba Olakulehin was not physically fit to rule at the moment.

    But Ladoja, speaking on Wednesday, countered Oba Ajibola’s position.

    Ladoja, during an interactive session with newsmen at his Bodija residence in Ibadan, on Wednesday, described Oba Ajibola’s statement as not only personal opinion but inflammatory, insisting that Oba Olakulehin, as an elderly person, was not expected to act like a youth.

    “Oba Olakulehin is not a 20-year-old man. He is not a 30-year-old or a 40-year-old man. He is over 80 years old. So, we can’t expect him to act like a youth,” Ladoja told newsmen as he further declared that whoever failed to honour today’s meeting after being notified could be substituted with another high chief next to him.

    The Osi Balogun of Ibadanland, Oba Lateef Adebimpe, who is next in line to Oba Ajibola, was at the Alalubosa Government Reserved Area residence of Oba Olakulehin where he paid homage alongside three other kingmakers last Friday and declared the Olubadan-designate as hale, hearty and fit for the throne.

    Akonitv learnt that if Oba Ajibola did not come to the meeting today, Oba Adebimpe, who is next in rank to him on the Balogun line of the Olubadan, would nominate the new monarch.

    After the meeting today, the kingmakers are expected to present their nomination to Governor Makinde for ratification and approval.

    It will be recalled that Governor Makinde, during the Sallah homage to him by prominent Ummah to mark the end of Ramadan fasting on Wednesday, had said, “The Obas-in-Council are yet to make their nomination. When they make it, it will come to me and I will either say yes or no. But that has not happened. So, why are people focusing on things that are capable of dividing us? Those whose stock in trade is to keep looking for what to divide us should look for something else to do. They should rather focus on things that will unite us.”

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    Renaming National Theatre after Soyinka a fitting recognition – NFVCB DG

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    Renaming National Theatre after Soyinka a fitting recognition – NFVCB DG

    The Director-General of the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), Shuaibu Hussaini, has commended President Bola Tinubu for renaming the National Arts Theatre in Lagos, after Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka.

    Hussaini, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday, described the development as “the kind of recognition one will wish for a giant like Wole Soyinka”.

    Akonitv that the President disclosed this in a tribute personally written and signed by him on Friday in Abuja, to mark Soyinka’s 90th birthday.

    The President renamed the National Theatre as Wole Soyinka Centre for Culture and the Creative Arts.

    It read: “Professor Soyinka, the first African to win the Nobel Literature Prize in 1986, deserves all the accolades as he marks the milestone of 90 years on earth.

    “Having beaten prostate cancer, this milestone is a fitting testament to his ruggedness as a person and the significance of his work.

    “It is also fitting we celebrate this national treasure while he is still with us.

    “I am, accordingly, delighted to announce the decision of the Federal Government to rename the National Theatre in Iganmu, Surulere, as the Wole Soyinka Centre for Culture and the Creative Arts.”

    Hussaini commended the President for his interest and passion for the arts.

    “It takes somebody who is passionate to remember that this kind of man needs to be recognised with this kind of iconic structure like the National Theatre.

    “It is a welcome development. I am happy because there is nothing you want to name after Soyinka that will be enough compared to what he has done in the literary world.

    “So, this is a fantastic news and welcome development. It is also the President’s interest that made him create a separate ministry for arts, culture, and creative economy because culture has always been an appendage of the Ministry of Information.

    “For us in the arts, this is a fitting reward and recognition for the great feat that Wole Soyinka has achieved, not just for himself, but for Nigeria and Africa as a whole,” Hussaini said.

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    Ecobank’s “Adire Lagos” opens in grand style with over 100 exhibitors

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    Ecobank’s “Adire Lagos” opens in grand style with over 100 exhibitors

    The annual Ecobank “Adire Lagos” exhibition has taken off in grand style with over 100 exhibitors showcasing their wares. The 4-day fair which opened June 14 and ends 17th, is taking place at the Ecobank Pan African Centre (EPAC) in Lagos.

    Originating from Abeokuta in Southwestern Nigeria, Adire textile is an indigenous indigo-dyed cloth made by using different wax-resistant methods to create dazzling designs.

    The four-day Adire exhibition, returning for the third year in a row, is to promote culture, tourism, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and enable them benefit from the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Some of the international exhibitors at the fair include Adire Oodua, Tampoori, Jide Batik, Janae, Asologe and host of others.

    The fair is set to witnessing influx of topflight exhibitors, government functionaries, culture enthusiasts, social media influencers, artistes, local and foreign tourists, traditional rulers, and members of the diplomatic community. It provides an exceptional opportunity to network with entrepreneurs, shoppers, and everyone in the business of Adire.

    Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Executive Director, Commercial Banking, Ecobank Nigeria, Kola Adeleke said the exhibition is part of the efforts of the bank to support the creative industry in the country, adding that it was also to promote micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and help them benefit from the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

    According to him, “As you all know, we are part of a Pan African bank which operates in 33 countries of Africa. We always look out to support various initiatives on the continent and this adire exhibition fits into the scheme. As you can see, today, we have over 100 merchants who are being given the opportunity to showcase their adire products. This is the biggest that we’ve ever seen.

    It is an international exhibition. We want to support them all the way, train them and make them international brands with indigenous backgrounds. We want to ensure they are able to export their locally-created products across the continent. This is also one way to support the Nigerian economy.”

    Exhibitors and attendees alike were enthusiastic and full of commendation for Ecobank. Ecobank Nigeria, a key driver of tourism, culture and the creative industries in Nigeria, recently hosted the +234Art, a 10-day art fair dedicated to nurturing and uplifting the burgeoning art industry in Nigeria.

    The fair provided a platform to support emerging artists and encourage increased interest in art acquisition; the bank organised the Photography, Art, and Design Exhibition (PADE) to commemorate World Photography Day in 2022; the bank also partnered “Songs & Stories” With Cobhams Asuquo; Redbull Dance Your Style; BellaNaija Style Summit and Loosing Daylight (An exhibition of the history of Nollywood organised by Nse Ikpe-Etim)

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    Makinde Inaugurates New Olubadan Palace, Says 11 LGAs To Maintain Edifice

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    Makinde Inaugurates New Olubadan Palace, Says 11 LGAs To Maintain Edifice

    Ahead of the formal coronation of the new Olubadan of Ibadan Land on Friday, July 12, 2024, the new Olubadan Palace was on Wednesday evening commissioned in Ibadan, by the Oyo State governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde.

    Akonitv reports that the new Palace project was initiated by the immediate-past administration of late Governor Abiola Ajimobi.

    Governor Makinde, who took to his verified social media handles on Wednesday night to disclose the development, thanked the late Governor Ajimobi; a former President of the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII), Chief O. O. Bello; Chief Bayo Oyero, and all Ibadan indigenes, who contributed to make the project a reality.

    He added that for the second phase of the palace, the State government will include renovating the Bower’s Tower in order to boost tourism in the State.

    Makinde wrote: “This evening, we commissioned the new Olubadan Palace in Ibadan. The event gave us an opportunity to acknowledge and thank everyone who made it possible including former Governor Abiola Ajimobi who started it, the former President of the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII), Chief O. O. Bello, Chief Bayo Oyero, and all Ibadan indigenes who contributed to make the project a reality.

    “To maintain this new palace, we have established a process where all 11 local government councils in Ibadan will contribute to its upkeep on a monthly basis. For the second phase of the palace, we will also include renovating the Bower’s Tower, to boost tourism in our dear State. We are looking forward to the coronation of our Olubadan this Friday.”

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