ANTP Crisis: Baba Wande Sues For Peace Among Stakeholders

Courtesy: babawandetv.blogspot.com.ng

Veteran Yoruba movie actor, Mr Kareem Adepoju, has called for peace among members of the Association of Nigeria Theatre Arts Practitioners (ANTP), after a court judgement on the crisis rocking the national body of the association.

Adepoju, who is popularly known as Baba Wande, said the judgement of the High Court sitting in Ejigbo, Osun State on March 28, 2017 that Mr Victor Asaolu should remain in office as the President of ANTP till February 2018, was not a solution to the crisis bedevilling the association.

He called on all stakeholders including the governors and royal fathers in Nigeria’s South-West region to intervene in the matter and save the ANTP, lauding the efforts of the Olowu of Owu kingdom, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, in resolving the crisis.

Speaking during an interview with Channels Television at his residence in Osogbo, Baba Wande appealed to all Yoruba film actors and actresses to come together and speak in one voice to develop the industry.

“Some of us feel that the tenure of the President of ANTP, Mr Victor Ashaolu has expired, but the man insisted that he has not finished his tenure and he took the matter to court instead of leaving the office.

“The man has been in the office as the ANTP President since 2010, whereas he was supposed to spend four years. The matter was brought to a court in Osun here and after several years of litigation, the court eventually ruled that Ashaolu’s tenure will end in February next year.

“As law abiding citizens of this country, we must respect the court and obey the judgement, unless anyone is interested in appealing the judgement in the higher court and that cannot be a solution to the problem we are battling with.

“I want to appeal to all Yoruba film-makers, actors and actresses to unite and speak in one voice in the best interest of all of us. This current crisis in the ANTP will not benefit anyone of us and the society.

“I also want to call on all stakeholders, especially the Governors of Osun, Mr Rauf Aregbesola; Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun; Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi; Lagos State, Mr Akinwumi Ambode; Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose and Ondo State, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu to intervene in the ANTP leadership crisis.

“I’m also appealing to our traditional rulers in Yoruba land, especially the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi; the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, and the Awujale of Ijebu Land, Oba Sikiru Adetona, to wade in and help us settle the dispute so that we can be together.

“We are grateful to the Olowu of Owu kingdom, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, who has been making frantic efforts to resolve the crisis. We appreciate his efforts so far and we also want him to intensify efforts so that the crisis would be resolved while we unite to make our association great again,” the Yoruba actor said.

Recalled that leading members of the ANTP pulled out from the association and form a parallel association christened Theatre Arts and Movie Practitioners Association of Nigeria (TAMPAN).

Mr Adebayo Salami, also known as ‘Oga Bello’, Prince Jide Kosoko and Mr Dele Odule, who had a running battle with Mr Ashaolu over the leadership tussle in ANTP, formed TAMPAN in Lagos State.

Ooni Of Ife Celebrates First Anniversary With Thanksgiving Service

Ooni Of Ife Celebrates First Anniversary With Thanksgiving ServiceOba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II rolled out the drums to celebrate one year since he was chosen to become the 51st Ooni of Ile-Ife.

A thanksgiving service held at the St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Ile-Ife, Osun State, where friends, family and well-wishers from far and wide converged to celebrate with him, the ‘journey so far’.

The excited monarch could not hide his joy as he took the microphone and sang praises to God.

The Ooni was born on October 17, 1974. He was selected king out of 21 contenders on October 26, 2015 and received his staff of office on December 7, 2015.

The Accountant and Real Estate developer since become king has dedicated the past year to the service of humanity and particularly unifying the Yoruba nation.

He has instituted a number of progressive courses in Osun state which he hopes to continue throughout his reign as king.

Ooni Pledges Support For Government’s Policies Targeting Development

Ooni Of Ife Pays Surprise Visit To Osun NYSC Camp At EdeThe Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, says he and his subjects will support any policy introduced by Governor Rauf Aregbesola that will bring development to Osun State.

Oba Ogunwusi made the promise at his palace where he met with members of Osun Internal Revenue Service (OIRS).

Members of the OIRS had come to introduce a new development levy to the people of Ile-Ife.

The traditional ruler emphasised that tax payment was the key to economic survival of the state and urged the people of the state to imbibe the culture of tax payment.

Explaining the new levy to the people of Ile-Ife, the Chairman of OIRS, Mr. Dayo Oyebanji, said tax payment remained the only viable option to fast-track infrastructural development in the state.

He said the levy became necessary due to dwindling allocation from the Federation Account.

According to Oyebanji, whatever is generated in each community would be recorded and used to develop such community.

He said motorcycle, tricycle and Korope in the state would attract 50 Naira daily, while tipper/trailer and other heavy-duty trucks would pay 200 Naira daily.

“Traders will pay 50 Naira on market days while artisans – barbers, carpenters, bricklayers, among others – would pay 100 Naira weekly,” he said.

The official of the revenue collection office, however, urged the traditional ruler, the people of Ile-Ife and environs to cooperate with the government in order to take the state to a higher level.

Also speaking, a consultant on Development Levy, Mr Solanke Hamzat, noted that the levy was different from the local government levy traders pay on market days.

He added that the state government would not relent in its efforts at executing projects that would better the lot of the people.

In their responses, the people urged the government to harmonise the levies.

On his part, Oba Ogunwusi urged the revenue body to set up another platform where people at the grassroots would be properly educated.

“We are ready to support the government but I’m advising you to have a proper dialogue with concerned associations in Ile-Ife so as to succeed in the task,” the traditional ruler said.

Ooni Of Ife Pays Surprise Visit To Osun NYSC Camp At Ede

Ooni Of Ife Pays Surprise Visit To Osun NYSC Camp At EdeThe Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi electrified the orientation camp of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Ede, Osun State when he visited the 2016 Batch ‘B’ Corps members to motivate and encourage them to aim high and aspire to be the best in life.

The Corps members were excited when they saw the Ooni who came to the NYSC camp with his usual retinue of royal entertainers who were singing and dancing to the amazement of the Corps members and the NYSC officials.

Corps members took turns to pay homage to the Ooni according to Yoruba tradition and the monarch showered royal blessings on them.

The Corps members exhibited the items they produced under the Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development (SAED) programme and Oba Ogunwusi commended the initiative.

Ooni thrilled the Corps members when he decided to leave his seat at the pavilion and insisted that he would stay under the sun to address the gathering since majority of the Corps members were also in the sun.

Ooni Of Ife Pays Surprise Visit To Osun NYSC Camp At Ede

Before proceeding to address the Corps members, Oba Ogunwusi called for a minute silence in honour of all Corps members that have died during their service year, especially an indigene of Osun State, Ifedolapo Oladepo who died in Kano during the ongoing orientation exercise.

While speaking, Oba Ogunwusi charged the Corps members to be focused and strive to be successful in life regardless of their shortcomings.

He advised them not to be deterred by the current economic situation of the country and urged them to contribute their quotas to national development.

He advised the corps members not to wait for white-collar jobs so as not to be disappointed since there are no jobs in the labour market

He narrated how he hawked rice, vegetable oil and sugar in popular markets before he met influential Nigerians like Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Dr Deji Adeleke who saw his vision and contributed to his success story.

His words, “I’m excited to be in your midst today, gentlemen Corps members. 21 years ago, I wore this uniform that you are wearing today.

“I served in Makurdi, Benue State. I know you would also be great in life. There are presidents, governors and ministers among you. Please be positive and pursue your vision diligently.

“After my NYSC, I decided that I would be an entrepreneur and that was why I did not seek employment when my mates were looking for jobs in the accounting firms. I was very popular at Agbeni market in Ibadan where I hawked rice, sugar and vegetable oil before I started selling cement.

“As a graduate of Accounting from the Polytechnic of Ibadan, I was hawking in the market and I was able to make a difference because of my educational background. I eventually met influential Nigerians like Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Dr Deji Adeleke from Ede here and my story changed.

“You can also make it if you are positive. Just be focused and determined. Don’t allow any condition to take away your dream. I faced serious challenges when I became a father at 19. I needed to survive along with my daughter and we were able to make it.

“My daughter is a graduate like you and she is currently at the NYSC orientation camp in Abuja. So, you can make it regardless of the circumstances.”

The State Coordinator of the NYSC in Osun state, Mrs Regina Iluebbey, lauded the Ooni of Ife for his exemplary leadership among the Yoruba Obas. He also commended the monarch for sharing his story with Corps members as a motivation.

Iluebbey said a total of 2,276 Corps members comprising 1,238 males and 1,038 females were registered for the orientation course in Osun and the exercise was hitch-free and successful.

17,000 Widows Benefit From Ooni’s 2.5m Naira Empowerment Programme

Adeyeye Ogunwusi Ooni of Ife in Osun State empwers widowsAt least 17,000 widows from communities around Ile-Ife in Osun State will benefit from the 2.5 million Naira empowerment programme of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi.

The communities that benefited from the empowerment programme were Modakeke, Ife, Ipetumodu and others.

Addressing the widows in his palace at Enuwa Square Ile-Ife, the Ooni said those empowered would be made to start off a trade that would ensure their upkeep and that of their children.

He stressed that the empowerment initiative would not pre-empt the usual tips he gives to the widows from time to time.

“The thought of empowering the widows struck me when I ascended the throne.

“Some widows came to me and presented some gifts. It touched me. In spite of their state, they could still think of honouring me.

“When I informed my chiefs and some elders, they screamed and said to me that the widows were much but I made them understand that God is always in control,” the Ooni explained.

He emphasised that apart from the empowerment, he would also on a monthly basis distribute 50 to 100 bags of rice and cows to the widows, as part of his plans to banish hunger.

Empowerment Programme Plan

Ooni-of-Ife-Oba-Adeyeye-Enitan-Ogunwusi
The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi

Moremi, Osara and Yemowo microfinance banks were among the five microfinance banks that partnered with the monarch on the programme.

Also, the Managing Director of Oloofin Microfinance Bank, Mr Toyin Folahami, advised the widows not to see the opportunity as a national cake, but as a way of getting empowered.

He spoke to reporters on the side-lines of the launching event for the empowerment programme in the palace.

Mr Folahami said, that the loan bequeathed to the widows would attract a nine-per cent interest rate.

He also stressed that the Ooni had no plans to give money to the widows, but that they would be empowered by procuring equipment for them through the central bank of Nigeria’s interventionist programme.

“There are five cooperative societies, which will form a union under which the widows would be grouped along the line of their occupation or clusters.

“We are doing the programme in collaboration with the Central Bank of Nigeria particularly, under one of its interventionist programmes.

“Before anything can be released by the CBN, they always want to know what you want to procure; how you want to procure it and from which manufacturer will you be getting it from?” he further explained.

Chief Ernest Shonekan Celebrates 80th Birthday

Ernest ShonekanThe story of Chief Ernest Shonekan’s life is one centered on merit, humility and service to humanity, and that was re-echoed when the British-trained lawyer, industrialist, Baba Isale of Egbaland and former Interim President of Nigeria turned 80.

The celebrant, who takes his Christian faith seriously together with his dear wife Margret and their lovely children, began the special birthday event with a thanksgiving service at the Cathedral Church of Christ, Marina in Lagos

The occasion saw several important guests honouring Chief Shonekan in a service officiated by the Primate of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Most Reverend Nicholas Okoh.

The special guests include former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon and wife Victoria; former Vice President, Chief Alex Ekwueme and wife Helen; Governor of Ogun State, Ibikunle Amosun and wife Olufunso, the Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Idiat Adegbule.

Others are former Minister of Defence, General Theophilus Danjuma and wife Senator Daisy; Chairman of FCMB, Otunba Shubomi Balogun and wife Adebutu; and the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Micheal Adedotun Gbadebo amongst others

Indeed, it was a special day as they joined him on the altar for thanksgiving and then sang a special birthday song for him.

Students from his Alma Mata, CMS Grammar School Lagos, also did a special presentation in his honour.

The social part of the celebration kicked off right away with veteran juju music maestro, Ebenezer Obey, dishing out some of his evergreen tunes in honour of the celebrant and to the delight of his A-list guests.

More important guests joined the party, like ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo; the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi and wife Olori Wuraola; former Governor of Kano State, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, and former Governor of Lagos, Chief Mobolaji Johnson.

Business mogul, Chief Razaq Okoya and wife Shade; Justice George Oguntade and wife; Chairman of Doyin Group, Mr Samuel Adedoyin; and the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Foreign Relations and Diaspora, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, also shared in the fun.

Chief Ernest Shonekan was born on the May 9, 1936 in Lagos. He is a British-trained lawyer, industrialist, and was the former Chief Executive of the United African Company of Nigeria Plc (UAC), before he was appointed as Interim President of Nigeria by General Ibrahim Babangida on August 26, 1993.

Chief Shonekan’s transitional administration only lasted three months before General Sani Abacha took over on November 17, 1993.

World Tallest Drums Unveiled In Drum Festival In Ogun

Tallest-drume-in-the-world
One of the World’s tallest drums at the Drum Festival in Ogun. It is 17ft tall

Nigeria’s first Drum Festival was held in Ogun State where drums believed to be the tallest in the world were unveiled. They stood 16 and 17 feet tall.

It was an exciting festival, with different drum sounds serenading the arena.

Drums are used not only as a means of providing musical sounds but equally as a means of communication.

It has become an important and integral part of human existence especially in the African culture.

The celebration of the rich and diverse cultural heritage resonates in Ogun State, also known as the Gate Way State.

During the maiden edition of the Nigeria Drum Festival, first of its kind in Nigeria and indeed the continent of Africa, drummers officially opened the show with the drumming of the national anthem. The talking drum did the wonder.

With the theme “Reviving Our Culture In Drums”, the Ogun State government conceived the idea in an attempt to revive and rejuvenate the dwindling fortunes of the Nigerian culture through the drums and at the same time boost the tourism potentials of the state as a means of job creation.

The Commissioner of Tourism in the state, Mr Muyiwa Oladapo, said the festival was a way of reviving the nation’s culture, which he stressed was dying.

“We needed to revive it and we knew and appreciated the fact that drum is that part of art and culture that cuts across the entire length and breadth of the community, Nigeria and the world,” Mr Oladapo stated.

The four-day event was held at the June 12 cultural Centre, in Abeokuta, the capital of Ogun State.

talking-drum
Ara, the talking drum, was one of the drums featured at the Drum Festival

It was attended by 19 states of the federation and witnessed by members of the diplomatic corps traditional rulers and other prominent guests joining the host Governor Ibikunle Amosun and his wife Olufunsho.

The event showcased drums from various culture across Nigeria, as participants entertained the audience with beautiful performances from individuals and groups like Ogun State Dance Troupe, Hubert Ogunde Theatre Group, Ani Dance Group from the east, the Unique Fingers from the Niger delta and Ara, the renowned talking drummer, among others.

Some of the dignitaries at the event were the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi and his Olori Wuraola, the Alake and paramount ruler of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, the Oshile of Oke Ona Egba, Oba Adedapo Tejuosho, the Director General of the National Council of Art and Culture, Mrs Dayo Keshi and her husband Ambassador Joe Keshi, and Senator Olorunimbe Mamora.