Adherence of African Beliefs Alerts Govt. Relevant Authorities on importance of Culture,Traditions to National Dev.

Morolake Ademiju

Prominent members of the International Congress for Ifa and Orisa Spirituality have expressed discontentment to the way African religion and traditions are being handled by government and relevant Stakeholders in the country. They specifically lamented on the preference given to the foreign religion, Christianity and Islam to be precise over the traditional beliefs. They therefore signalled that unknown to government opportunities abide for economic improvement through religion tourism and overcoming security challenges in government prioritizing African traditions with necessary attention.

The Stakeholders however declared that they will continue to intensify efforts for more awareness and understanding of people about the religion for the benefit of the black race and humanity at large.

This was stated on Friday at a Press Conference held at the Secretariat of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Ekiti State Council, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State to commemorate the 10th anniversary of World Ifa/Orisa Festival and Pilgrimage, Oke-Igeti 2024 which came up in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti state capital


The General Secretary, International Congress for Ifa and Orisa Spirituality, Mr. Akomolafe Wande Olomi, who is an Ex.Assistant Pastor in Deeper Life Church, said they came to Ekiti to know the source of all the Orisas according to their beliefs.

He stated that a lot of nations such Saudi Arabia, Israel, India and several others derive their revenue through faith tourism.

“Why can’t we develop our own? There’s nothing we are looking for in other countries that we don’t have here. We have everything but the only problem is that we don’t value what we have, maybe because we are so used to it because it’s my father’s house.

“That small stone in my father’s house, what can it do? But that same stone is in another place that you have to pay for before you can worship it. But the one in your father’s house, you don’t appreciate it. That’s our problem.

“We heard it recently that the Federal Government of Nigeria is subsidising Hajj by N90 billion. If just ten percent of that amount is given to us, we would transform this nation and people from other countries will be coming.

Commenting on the 10th edition of the Ifa/ Orisa congress, “this year alone, we have over sixty foreigners from different countries that are in Nigeria now to see what we have in Ekiti State. But with the support of government and the pressmen, we can make it happen and bigger. We can do more than what Saudi is doing.

“Look at what Saudi is making as revenue every year to the extent that they are even telling us that they cannot issue more visa to foreigners because they have had enough. From Nigeria, this is the number allotted to you, don’t bring more than these people because they have enough”.

Mr. Olomi said based on the misconception about the African tradition which is giving the religion a set back, they are appealing to government on assistance for recognition and acceptability to increase adequate acceptability from the people. He said if government can do just ten percent of what they do to other faiths, they would see what they would generate in terms of faith tourism.

He called on government at levels to give recognition to the traditional institution by always declare public holidays as being done to other religions during their festivals.They said Lagos, Ogun and Osun have been doing that while urging other states in the Southwest Nigeria to emulate same

Also, a convert, Mrs Funmilayo Fakankun, who was a Christian for over thirty years of her life but now a tutor in Ifa and Orisa said, there are something she met in Ifa religion which she never thought existed. Claiming that Ifa Spirituality has one of the most advanced technology.

She lamented on , “the way we have been so wired to embrace foreign things, neglecting our own is quite painful. If I say I cannot promote tradition, it means I am saying that I cannot promote my identity as a Yoruba person. If Ifa can be well explored, it will really boost the economy of the nation

She said they just need a listening ears and encouragement of the government. “Let them sit down and hear what we have to offer and see whether it worths it or not.

They all thanked the Executive Governor of the host State, Ekiti, His Excellency, Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji and all members of his Cabinet including everyone that came to partake in the programme in Ekiti.

The Araba Awo of Oke- Agbe Akoko, Ondo State, Chief Ayobami Ogedengbe in his speech identified the introduction of Ifa to National Orientation and development of Ifa for both Primary and Secondary Schools curriculums to put an end to various problems and challenges confronting Nigeria as a country.


Ayobami who is a graduate of Microbiology regretted that he had graduated from the University before he learnt that Ifa is a knowledge system that contains philosophy and Yoruba history, saying that research into Ifa Metaphysics which he described as the words that can be used to activate and deactivate any element of nature, could form a special weapon for the military and develop new technology.

He said “we represent the religion but there are other areas where economic activities can be stimulated if the government pays attention to it. The government needs to do something into Ifa research because the entire knowledge is rich and should be extracted into its different components”. Chief Ayobami explained.

The event, 10th edition of the World Ifa/Orisa Pilgrimage started on 10th May, and would be concluded on 26th May, 2024.

The theme of the celebration is , “Our Culture, Our Life”,

On his own part, Mayegun of Ifa Priests in Egba land and Secretary of Ifa Spiritualists in Ogun State, Chief Oluwo Ifaniyi Awoyemi, said they came to Ekiti for this year’s Congress.

“Historically, we were told that if anyone wants to know where Ifa resides, the person should go to Ijeti in Ado-Ekiti. That’s why we have come. We have been researching this for several years. When we heard that Ifa is in Oke-Ijeti in Ado-Ekiti, some deities (Orisas) that couldn’t stay away from Orunmila, came to Ado-Ekiti with him.

“When they came, they went their different ways and get themselves established. Esu resides in Ijelu-Ekiti, Ogun resides in Ire-Ekiti, Osun is in Igede-Ekiti, Orisenire is in Erijinyan, Osanyin is in Isaba-Ekiti and many of them like that, that couldn’t distant themselves from Orunmila. To confirm the authenticity of what we have been hearing that all of them are in Ekiti, that’s why we are in Ekiti”. Mayegun said.

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