UNARGUABLY, the Ojude Oba festival has become a platform for cultural reminisce, homage and socio-economic outing with unique celebration of affluence, fashion and the pride of Ijebu people, and the just concluded edition was an icing of better festival ahead.
For this year’s record-breaking event, the story of Ojude Oba festival remains the same, but the outing came with fascinating colours and styles that held visitors, tourists and friends spell bound to different age groups’ competition and communal merriment that characterised the event.
With previous winners of Regberegbes competition pepping up their outing with different surprises to emerge the best in the lined up of winners at the annual event, others also devised several innovations in the areas of presentations and display to outdo the last year’s best.
The theme of the 2014 edition; Our People, Our Heritage, was a big banner held in high esteem by the organisers and celebrated by the age groups, families of different Baloguns and corporate sponsors who also added glamour to the festival.
The interpretation of this year’s theme gave credence to most of the colourful presentations that mesmerised the audience that converged at the processional pitch, for better spectacles of the Baloguns and their horse riders.
One thing that cannot be taken away from the Ijebus is their love and display of cultural pride through colourful attires and radiant looks, which stand each group out and unique.
This statement was pronounced at every stance of display put together by the male and female age grades and groups which brought out cultural norms, values and significance of the event.
The Ijebus are equally noted for sociability throughout the Yoruba Kingdom; they work hard and celebrate well. They are known to go a long haul to make their events memorable.
An index of growth, prosperity and tranquility of the 19th century Ijebuland was the systematic organisation of age grades known as Regberegbe every three years with titles reflecting significant events. They constitute a major instrument of social cohesion and mobilisation in Ijebuland. These groups always come together to help one another in the event of any serious needs for concerted and joint effort.
The Regberegbes have always been lynchpin of traditional Ijebu democratic form of government. The Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Kayode Adetona has revived the Regberegbe for the continuous rapid development of Ijebu. This strategy has been yielding fruitful results and the Regberegbes are in healthy rivalry and contribution to the economic viability of Ijebuland.
Oba Adetona’s resuscitation of the system is a positive move to blend the ancient and the modern for the progress of Ijebuland.
In scaling up the trend of the Ojude Oba festival, one of the major sponsors which has played active role in the last eight years, Globacom, added glamour to this year’s edition with different star prizes and corporate gifts.
The commitment of the Glo family at growing the festival through different competitive cash prizes and trophies made the presentations of the Regberegbes more pronounced as each age grade tried by all standards to be the cynosure of all eyes.
This year’s edition of the competition was not easy either for the contenders let alone for the Judges who used different criteria and presentation models to pick the winners of the Regberegbe outing in the female (Egbe Obinrin Akile) and male contenders (EgbeOkunrin Akile).
In the female categories, the Tobalase Obinrin Akile were on top of the game as they won the trophy and a cash prize of N500,000 to emerge the 2014 edition leaving the Jagunmolu Stainless Obinrin Akile and the Bobakeye Double T , Obinrin Akile with the second and third positions with cash prizes of N300,000 and N200,000 respectively.
The male categories, which are as tough as that of the female were also down to earth to be the star winner.
The judges declared Egbe Bobagbimo Okunrin Akile as the star winner of 2014 best group outing with a golden trophy and cash prize of N500,000, while the Bobagunte Okunrin Akile slugged it out with the Tobalase Okunrin Akile as the second and third runners up with cash of N300,000 and N200,000 respectively.
The last category which showcased the dexterity of the families of warlords in Ijebuland, saw the Balogun Alatise families defending their territory as they gallantly emerged the star winner catering home a golden trophy with cash prize of N500,000, while the Balogun Kuku’s families and Balogun Soye family settled for the second and third position in their warlike display went home with cash prize of N300,000 and N200,000 respectively.
Some of the audience who were not happy with the outing of their favourite Regberegbes and Baloguns believed there was a foul play in the judgement while others took it as a stroke of luck adding that there is a next time, as they believed luck, would be on their side.
For the National Coordinator, Business Support, Globacom, Mr Yomi Ogunbamowo, who led the Globacom team to pay homage to the Awujale spoke with optimism that the proudly Nigeria telecommunication giant will continue to support and bring good tidings to the success of the annual Ojude Oba festival.
Globacom showered guests and spectators with different branded gifts.
The just concluded Ojude Oba festival had in attendance Lt. General Theophilius Danjuma and wife, Senator Daisy Ehanire Danjuma as the special guests of honour while they were joined by Governor Ibukunle Amosun, former governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, founder, First City Monument Bank (FCMB), Otunba Olasubomi Balogun and a host of others.
SOURCE: NIGERIAN TRIBUNE
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