Category: Oyo State Council For Arts And Culture

52-edition of NAFEST theme ‘Celebrating Unity In Diversity’ Nov.13-20, 2021.

The Director General of the National Council for Arts and Culture, Otunba Olusegun Runsewe (OON) who is also the President of the World Crafts Council, African Region, has said that his ultimate goal is to use Culture to unite Nigeria and bring about sustainable peace and national development.

Runsewe said this at the opening of a 3-day meeting of the National Technical Stakeholders of the National Festival of Arts and Culture held in Ado Ekiti from August 3-5, 2021.

The Ekiti State Governor who was represented by his deputy Otunba Bisi Egbeyemi expressed his excitement that the State will be hosting 52-edition of NAFEST for this year with the theme ‘Celebrating Unity In Diversity’ scheduled for November 13-20, 2021. He said this year’s NAFEST would present a good opportunity to showcase the rich cultural heritage of Ekiti State for the world to see and to tap into its economic potential. He added that any State that fails to take into account the need to situate culture as well as the creative capacity of its people within its developmental plan is bound to face serious social, political and economic crisis in the long run.

“The forthcoming NAFEST will promote national unity, social integration, redirect cultural activities, revenue generation and create windows of investment opportunities for the economic growth of not only Ekiti State but also Nigeria”.

The Ekiti State Commissioner for Arts, Culture and Tourism, Professor Rasaki Ojo Bakare in his remark also said that the essence of the meeting was a reminder to the stakeholders of the Iconic American President, Abraham Lincoln quote that “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four hours sharpening the axe” Bakare said the quote underscores the importance of proper planning towards having satisfactory NAFEST.  He said: “This collective interface among all the principal implementers of the National Festival of Arts and Culture 2021 project will continue to be a major success factor in every successful edition of the NAFEST.”

The first lady of Ekiti State, Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi, whose presence added colour to the Technical Stakeholders meeting, was decorated as “Mama NAFEST 2021”. She appreciated the Director General of National Council for Arts and Culture, for giving her the award of Mama NAFEST 2021. She however urged the delegates and stakeholders to explore all the good experiences that Ekiti State has to offer during the forthcoming NAFEST.

The meeting was attended by over 30 State Commissioners of Culture and other stakeholders in the Culture and Tourism sector of the country.

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France, Oyo Govt. Meet to Develop Tourism Sites

French Embassy is working on a new way to develop tourism in Oyo State, especially as it looks to expand its bilateral relationship with the State.

A team from French Embassy said this over the weekend when they visited the State Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism and a tourist site, Ado-Awaye hill.

Speaking during the visit, the leader of the French delegation, Dr. Vincent Hiribarren said the country is determined to stay engaged with Oyo State and seek ways to explore its tourism potentials in different archaeological and historical sites.

His words, “Currently, France is seeking to help the Oyo State Government to document its tourism potentials. This is the first working visit to the State’s tourism sites”.

He said “the field visit to potential archaeological sites in Oyo State would afford us the opportunity to assess them, with the aim of developing an archaeological project”.

The team also toured studios and archives of the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism with the aim of developing a project on digitalisation of archival materials and training of personnel.

Dr. Vincent Hiribarren also promised the French Government’s support to Oyo State, in ensuring the full digitisation of its archaeological documents, archival materials and cultural heritage.

The team thereafter met management of the Ministry to deliberate on possible projects to be developed based on the assessments made.

The French delegation added that the relics put up for consideration include Idere Relics, Kunrunmi Relics, Iyake Suspended Lake Ado Awaye & Aso Ofi centre, Iseyin (home of weavers).

“This official visit to the State is marked with a trip to the famous Ado-Awaye hill where we discovered big tourism potentials such as the Iya’ke suspended lake, the Iya’laro lake and an ancient cave”.

Dr. Hiribarren, who heads the French Institute for Research in Africa, promised the French Government’s support to ensure Ado-Awaye among other tourist sites in the State are enlisted on the UNESCO recommendation for tourism, which he noted will consummate the State’s economic diplomacy upgrade.

“We will ensure this is established as part of UNESCO tourism sites, such that it will influence tourists and improve the rating and cultural heritage of the community”, he said.

He added that the visit was an attempt to build on the priorities set by the French Government, saying it was also a sign of Paris’ “willingness to change the narrative of the relations between the State and France”.

“We are working for a new, more sustainable, fairer way to support the tourism potentials in Oyo State. We want to find ways to partner with Oyo State on tourism to create more jobs, and to create more economic growth”, he added.

Speaking earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr. ‘Bunmi Babalola appreciated the French Government for the visit, which he noted will increase the volume of economic impact on the people of Ado-Awaye.

He also promised the State Government’s full support to prioritize the tourism sector, which will in turn expand the State’s economy.

The Alado of Ado-awaye, HRM, Oba Sunday Oladapo Oyediran said the community has waited long for the realisation of this age-long dream.

Noting that the community hosts the only natural suspended lake in the African continent, the Monarch added that the development will not only enhance tourism potentials in the State, but curb criminality and other vices.

The French Embassy Mission included, Professor Gerard Chouin (Williams & Mary USA), Dr. Vincent Hiribarren (Director IFRA Nigeria), Ms. Lea ROTH (Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne), Prof. R. A. Alabi (Head of Department of Archaeology UI), Joseph Ayodokun (Department of Archaeology UI and Field officer of IFRA Nigeria’s Archaeological Projects) and Patrick Babalola (Archivist , IFRA Nigeria).


Dr. Bunmi Babalola,

Permanent Secretary,

Oyo State Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism

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Oyo Shines, Wins Medals At NAFEST 2019

Oyo State has rounded off its sterling performance in the 2019 National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFEST) tagged Edo 2019 by winning gold, silver and bronze medals.

The State contingency came 5th out of 29 States that participated in the edition, a feat adjudged the best in the history of its participation.

According to the panel of Umpires, Oyo State would have come 3rd, but due to the tallying of points by Ogun, River, Edo, Bayelsa and Delta States for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd ranks and Oyo State had to drop to the 5th position.

In distinguishing the brilliant display by the State contingent, its children cultural dance troupe was rated the best and made to perform before Her Excellency, the Wife of Edo State Governor, Mrs. Betsy Bene Obaseki.

As announced at the end of the event, Oyo State came 1st in Children Cultural Quiz, 2nd in Children Arts and Craft, 4th in Traditional Board Game (Ayo) and 5th in Drama competitions.

While receiving the awards and certificates on behalf of the Oyo State Government, the General Manager, Oyo State Council for Arts and Culture, Mrs. Olayinka Adedeji, praised the team for making the State proud.

She commended the current administration led by Engineer Seyi Makinde for the moral and financial support given to the State to participate in this year’s event.

The last time Oyo State attended the annual festival was in 2012.

In his reaction, the Commissioner for Information Culture and Tourism, Dr. Wasiu Olatubosun lauded the delegation for the sterling performance in the Culture and Arts carnival.

He also commended Governor Seyi Makinde for the support given to the troupe to showcase the rich cultural heritage of Oyo State, reiterating the administration’s promise to resuscitate and promote the cultural heritage in all the Local Government areas of the State.

“The performance of the State’s contingency has again proved that a new Oyo State that will best others in any competition, be it in education, culture, commerce, security, health and public infrastructure is here, we salute the unrelenting attitude of our young ones who participated in the 2019 NAFEST Festival and we will always support them whenever the need arises.

“No doubt that Oyo State is the home of culture and we are not relenting in showcasing this to the outside world, as this important aspect of life will also serve as a source of revenue generation for the State,” he declared.



Hon. Wasiu Olatunbosun, PhD.,

Hon. Commissioner, 

Min. of Information, Culture & Tourism,

Oyo State Government.


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Oyo Celebrates First Ijala Festival with Carnival, Competition, Awards

The inaugural celebration of Ijala festival in Ibadan would be heralded with carnival, competition and awards for notable Ibadan indigenes from the 17th to 19th of October 2019 at Ilaji Hotels and Resort Center, Akanran, Ibadan.

The event which was packaged by Ona-Ara Development Forum (ODF) in conjunction with Oyo State Ministry of Information and Tourism was slated towards awakening the cultural renaissance and to bring back the glory of Yoruba’s oral poetry popularly called Ijala.

This disclosure was made on Monday by the President, Ona-Ara Development Forum, Alhaji Kola Bolomope at a Press conference held at the Film Theater of the State Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism.

Bolomope said the need for the cultural renaissance was occasioned by the dearth of Yoruba culture which he said has contributed to low sense of cultural belonging and poor moral rectitude among the people of the Southwest Nigeria.

“To the Yoruba of South-west Nigeria, to be a hunter was an ultimate honour and those who were hunters were seen as ideal men. Ijala chant belongs to a genre of exclusive hunters and are performed on festivals such as coronations and weddings.

“This important aspect of our cultural heritage is going into extinction. As a community with the background of several brave and distinguished hunters, it is our conviction that we should spearhead the revival and promotion of this form of Yoruba entertainment.

“The program which will hold between Thursday 17th and Saturday 19th October 2019 will also serve as a platform to boost tourism, maintain the oral traditions of the Yoruba people and for the children of Yorubas to be more exposed to the art of Ijala storytelling as well as creating employment opportunities for the teeming population of the State.”

The State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr. Wasiu Olatunbosun who was at the event hinted that the State Government’s policy on promotion of cultural values and arts was in tandem with the Ijala renaissance project, promising the group behind the festival of Government’s support for its success.




Hon. Wasiu Olatunbosun, PhD.,

Hon. Commissioner, 

Min. of Information, Culture & Tourism,

Oyo State Government.

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Ogundare Foyanmu to Resurrect as Oyo Celebrates Ijala Festival in October

Oyo State Government has assured of its readiness to support the 2019 Ijala festival initiated by Ona-Ara Development Council in Ibadan, the State capital.

Ijala rendition is an African oral poetry that is chanted by the Yoruba people to celebrate and commiserate and foremost among the major Ijala chanters was Late Chief Ogundare Foyanmu.

The Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr. Wasiu Olatunbosun disclosed this while hosting members of Ona-Ara Development Council, led by its President, Alhaji Kola Bolomope at his office.

According to the Commissioner, Ijala festival would be given adequate publicity by the media during the celebration slated between October 17th to 19th 2019.

Dr. Olatunbosun called on members of Ona-Ara Development Forum to always support the state government in its determined efforts at providing the dividends of the democracy for the people.

The Commissioner ordered that the Director of Tourism along with its official be part of the steering committee for the proposed Ijala Festival in order to enhance a successful celebration.

“This is a  type of events that promotes the culture and tradition of the Yoruba people and we have to support the group to bring it to life. Many of the Yoruba traditional literary genres have been long abandoned as they were not practiced like it used to be in the old and we are the one paying for it today.

“This event will bring about memories of yesteryears as we all used to listen to Ijala from the great Yoruba poets like Baba Ogundare Foyanmu and others.

“It is a thing of joy that we still have individuals that can chant the Ijala poetry and we will give adequate support to this group to have a successful outing, come October.”

Earlier in his speech, the President of the Forum, Alhaji Bolomope informed the Commissioner that their main purpose of for the proposed festival is aimed at attracting tourism across the world to showcase the cultural potentials in Yoruba land.

He the solicited for the Ministry support to ensure a successful festival and other activities of the Forum in the overall interest of the people of Ona-Ara and Oyo State in general.



Hon. Wasiu Olatunbosun, PhD.,

Hon. Commissioner, 

Min. of Information, Culture & Tourism,

Oyo State Government.


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