19 Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information and Culture as well as his Interior counterpart, Rauf Aregbesola, on Monday visited the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, to honour him on his 49th coronation anniversary.
The Nigeria News Agency reports that the ministers in company with Sen. Babafemi Ojudu, the Special Adviser to the Vice President on Political Matters, arrived the monarch’s palace in Oyo town on Monday.
NAN also reports that the monarch, as part of activities marking his 49th coronation anniversary, also installed renowned Fuji musician, Wasiu Ayinde, popularly known as KWAM 1, as Mayegun of Yorubaland.
Adeyemi, one of the Africa’s most powerful and influential traditional rulers, was crowned on Jan. 14, 1971.
The ministers, in separate interviews after a closed door meeting with the Alaafin, told newsmen that they were in Oyo to honour both the monarch and Ayinde.
Mohammed, in particular, said that he was in Oyo on a combined mission of honouring the duo of the Alaafin and Ayinde as well as to promote the cultural values of the country.
“We are here to honour the Alaafin and an icon in Nigerian music. As you know, I am the minister in-charge of culture, I have another role to play.
“I am here to honour a friend and to beam the light on the cultural values of our country,” he said.
Aregbesola, on his part, said that he was in Oyo to be part of the 49th ascension anniversary of the Alaafin and to rejoice with his friend, Ayinde.
“I am here to be part of the 49th anniversary of Alaafin’s ascension to the throne and equally rejoice with my friend, King Wasiu Ayinde Marshall,” he said.
Ojudu said that he was in Oyo to honour the monarch and Ayinde on the instruction of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
“You know what Kabiyesi is doing today is honouring Yoruba culture. The musicians and theatre practitioners, as custodians of culture, tells stories of yesterday, today and project that of today.
“Nobody has honoured any harbinger of culture in our society. Today is the first, somebody who upholds our culture and takes it around the world is being honoured.
“It is very important. That is why the Vice President asked me to be here,” he said.
NAN reports that the event was attended by traditional rulers from Oyo, Ogun and Lagos States, theatre practitioners and other dignitaries.
(Edited by: Bola Akingbehin/Mufutau Ojo)