close

Culture & Tourism

AfricaCulture & TourismEvents

Alaafin’s legacy continues as Oyo host World Sango Festival 2022- Paula Gomes

Sango Festival is an annual festival held among the Yoruba people in honour of the Sango, thunder and fire deity who was believed to possess supernatural powers. Sango is also a warlord and the third king of the Oyo Kingdom after succeeding Ajaka his elder brother. The festival is usually held in August at the palace of the Alaafin of Oyo and is also observed in over forty countries around the world.

This year’s festival would be celebrating after the demise of Alaafin, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III, who joined his ancestors on 23rd April 2022 after reigning for fifty-two years on the throne of his forebears.

Dr. Paula Gomes Aduke who is the Cultural Ambassador to the institution of  Alaafin shares with African Development Magazine about the festivals and legacy.

“World Sango Festival is annually hosted in Oyo and our late father, Oba Adeyemi spent the latter years of his reign showcasing to the larger world on account of the historical significance of Sango to the socio-cultural development of Oyo and Yoruba land as a whole. Kabiyesi  Adeyemi III had sacrificed and resolved to give the World Sango Festival  global appeal with projection of magnetizing many more individuals and groups from foreign nations to Yoruba Land.” She said

However, the Sango Festival was included in the UNESCO inventory in 2017, only in 2019 it was submitted for nomination and finally in 2022 the full process has been completed for enlistment on the UNESCO Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

World Sango Festival is the most significant in Oyo, as it is deeply linked to the survival of the people’s identity, culture and history. The annual Sango festival represents the community’s linkage and constant connection with its ancestral world, appreciation of the productivity season, and reaffirms the spiritual power of the Throne of Oyo.

It remains a socio-cultural mechanism of extreme importance for unity, mass participation, the sense of belonging and common identity of the Yoruba people. This is also a social practice, rituals and festive events deeply linked to social, religious, cultural and political institutions. It is a fundamental element for the maintenance of the identity of the city, unity among people since time immemorial and the survival of the heart and mind of Yoruba culture. It is the maintenance of coexistence with the ancestral world and nature.

Dr. Paula and Late Alaafin, Oba Adeyemi III

The festival lasts ten days during the month of August with traditional practices and intensive beliefs that accommodate many cultural characteristics, and it is the period of heavy rains that marks the beginning of a new cycle of productivity season and a bond of renewal between the Alaafin and Sango, the ancestral spiritual world.

It is a festival that reflects the traditional diversity of its environment. Various activities take place such as traditional prayers, rituals, declamation of oral poetry to the rhythm of traditional drums, followed by traditional dance to evoke the ancestors and the exchange of traditional gifts between the royal palace and the main Shrine of Sango Koso.

This is also the period that the Orisa pilgrims will invoke the mercy and divine guidance of Sango divinity through the Olodumare. For many it is a time for devotion and supplication through belief, sharing of love and respect to the Will of Olodumare . With fervent hope and strong faith in Olodumare , all Olorisa pilgrims will receive the divine grace of Olodumare.

Sango priests are expected to be at the prayer ceremony with the blessing ceremony for the offering of bitter kola, silence and mutual co- existence. They are expected to sit by the shrine and devotionally pray to the Olodumare, while some priests will carry the bitter kola in the Calabash, open it and spray it with water. There will be a sense of fulfillment to those who make it all the way.

The highlight of the Festival takes place on the first and last day. The first day is the celebration of the Traditional NEW YEAR (Odún Ìbílè Tuntun), which begins with the new 13 monthly cycle of the Yoruba Indigenous Calendar, when the High Chief Mogba Koso accompanied by the chants of the sacred Sango Pipe along Koso performs the sacred rites to Sàngó at the main sacred shrine at Koso.

The Last day is another import day when the population of the city gathers in Koso and eagerly awaits the arrival of Elegun  Sango Koso, leading the crowd towards the palace for the final spiritual blessing of the feast. The Alaafin withdraws from the palace, as it is strictly forbidden for him to see the manifested ancestral spirit of Sango.

The Festival is a particular expression and probably the most distinctive of the intangible heritage of the city of Oyo uniting all forms of knowledge. As such, it covers the full range of techniques, skills and crafts through which the cultural values, customs and traditions of Oyo people manifest them. As an indigenous society, traditions are perpetuated as a generational legacy and transmitted through oral transmission.

The Yoruba language is still used to convey the linguistic values incorporated from the ancestral identity of the traditional community in general. For example, reciting the traditional “Oriki Sango Pipe” (praise poems) as a way of codifying historical advance in an interpretable and intelligible way, is a clear example of the rich oral heritage related to the ancestor Sango, and indispensable for the realization of the Festival. Learning “Oriki Sango Pipe” poems, songs, prayers, liturgical rites, dance, natural medicinal production, divination, percussion and even dance starts from a young age. To ensure that parts of this rich and complex oral legacy, performing arts and learning are not lost, traditional families impart their knowledge through the informal method, teaching their male and female children and other community members. This learning system is the basis of the successful resistance of Oyo traditions.

 

Legacy continues….

read more
Entertainment

ENTERTAINMENT: El Gouna film festival postponed- Organisers

The Gouna Film Festival, scheduled for October, will be held next year, organisers announced on Sunday evening, saying that “global challenges” were not conducive for the event in Egypt, which has been hit by soaring prices due to the war in Ukraine. Africanews reports

No specific date has been set for the sixth edition of the Arab film festival, which each year brings in stars from across the region and beyond, including Forest Whitaker and Owen Wilson in previous editions.

In 2017, real estate tycoon Samih Sawiris founded the festival in the town of el-Gouna, on the Red Sea, 450 kilometres southeast of Cairo. This posh seaside resort was itself created in 1989 by the Sawiris family, the richest in Egypt.

Actors and members of parliament accused the half-absurd, half-social portrait of “tarnishing the reputation” of the country where, according to the World Bank, two out of three inhabitants live below or just above the poverty line.

Stricken by galloping inflation, huge public spending on infrastructure and a brutal devaluation, Egypt is discussing a new loan with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) while the country’s budget of about $160 billion is burdened by a public debt that reaches 90% of GDP

read more
Culture & Tourism

OONI to host festival of Alaraagbo Deity in Ile-Ife

All roads lead to the cradle city of Ile-Ife as the African foremost monarch,
Arole Oduduwa Olofin Adimula, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, the Ooni of Ife will on Sunday 26 June, 2022 play host to African Traditional Religion faithfuls and guests expected from all over the world for the 2022 edition of the annual WORLD ALARAAGBO FESTIVAL
In a statement signed by Director, Media & Public Affair,Otunba Moses Olafare, It was annouced that the festival scheduled to hold on Sunday at the Ile Oodua Palace of the Ooni of Ife will also mark the official installation of Chief (Mrs) Abike Osunbunmi Ifasemilore, an Osogbo born Ibadan based Osun priestess who is the President of Omilere Alaragbo Global Foundation, and CEO of Gberanle Herbal Mixture and Adoleen Herbal Balm as Yeye Alaraagbo Oodua.
The annual festival had its maiden edition in Ile-Ife on 3rd of June last year celebrating Orisa Egbe known as Alaraagbo being a deity of covenant fulfillment and a lively spiritual entity that believes in people making good their promises made in heaven.
Like other deities; Olokun, Osun, Osara, Ogun, Oranfe, Orunmila, Obatala, Oduduwa, this Orisa Alaragbo was among the 401 super human beings seconded to the world to populate the first dynasty of mankind known as Ife Oodaye.
The 3 day festival from Friday 24th to Sunday 26th June 2022 is in fulfillment of the Ooni Ogunwusi’s vision and mission to showcase our traditional culture to the world with a view to advancing cultural tourism as veritable means for economic development.
read more
Africa

ANNOUNCEMENT: AFRIK Ultimate Hero Search to Start Audition July 1- August 30, 2022- Organiser

AUHS organiser has announced that the online audition will start in July and run through August 30, 2022.

The announcement was made recently during a briefing held in Lagos, by the convener, movie producer, and host of the new TV reality show, Thompson Ukeki.

Arrangements have been made for the premiere of AFRIK Ultimate Hero Search (AUHS), an initiative of a Nigerian movie producer, Thompson Ukeki, which aims to create a platform for multi-tasking Nigerian youths to hone their cooking skills and showcase African dishes and culinary culture.

According to him,  AUHS online audition will start in July and run through August 30, 2022. The show will commence on September 1 and end on September 30, 2022. The online audition will take place in all the state capitals across the country, including Enugu, Oyo, Lagos, Ogun, Ekiti, Abuja, Ondo, Edo, Kaduna, Rivers, Benue, Delta, Imo, Uyo, Jos, C/River, Anambra, Kwara, Ebonyi, Osun and Katsina States.

“With 30 contestants and six local chefs as judges, the show will be viewed all over Nigeria through Dstv, Gotv and Startimes channels with contestants from different backgrounds living together, undergoing rigorous training daily and carrying out tasks,” he said.

Ukeki said the show was aimed at promoting cultural decency, enlightening Nigerian youths and encouraging them to focus on their dreams and aspirations.

He noted that one of the objectives of the reality show is to improve the wellbeing of the average Nigerian youth, help to build capacity for multi-talented Nigerians.

He said, “This show is targeted at youths who are multi-talented, but not sure of their cooking skills direction. It will also enable them to gain access to what the society has denied them in terms of religion, ethnicity, responsibilities, family pride and life balancing effect.

”AFRIK Ultimate Hero Search makes a strong statement, showing that the world can be properly entertained without an iota of nudity and promiscuity, which have characterised our recent reality shows.”

“In the history of every nation, there are times when products and brands like this come up. First when I was accosted, I was very reluctant to support this programme, knowing very well that we abuse brands, and for me, anything Nigerian is my project.

“I would like to say that we the organisers of this programme have made history at a time when we are talking of the worrisome state of morals, morale and the upbringing of our youth in a country like Nigeria. The AFRIK  Hero Ultimate Search is a wakeup call and an indication that there is hope for this country.

“There is also the saying that some men like women a lot. Any man who does not like women cannot get a good wife. Because to get a good wife, you must know who is a woman. So for me, AUHS is a unique brand that has come to tell us that when others are developing programmes that show nudity among others,  we  are here to bring the best out of our youths.’

”I know that this is just meant to be a very fantastic event, a fantastic show. Which is going to bring you the real house hands as this course is going to encourage a lot of youths.

“And if you have not started at all, you begin to find yourself learning to do something. This is a very lovely initiative.

Let us believe in our African food and cultural heritage. The New reality TV show, AUHS, is to promote our cultural heritage and decency values.”

To be part of the historic event; Kindly log on to: https://www.africultimateherosearch.com

Registration is Free

read more
AfricaCulture & TourismInternationalInterview storyInterviewsPersonality Interview

I promote African culture, tradition and spirituality of our ancestors- Fabunmi, Yeyeoba of Oyotunji Kingdom

Fabunmi Adefunmi Sands is a scientist 1, licensed phlebotomist, certified orthopedic technician, and Echocardiogram reader who is currently working as an Emergency room technician II, and as a shop steward for SEIU-United Health care workers, a part-time lobbyist who assist with debating on the Capital floor in Sacramento, California, dealing with health care bills and rights for the people of California.

She graduated from American River College with an associate’s in Health and Science with an emphasis in psychology and emergency medicine and Bachelor’s degree in health and Administration with an emphasis in the  Emergency room and National.

Fabunmi is a part-time Human rights activist, a peace ambassador for the Black race, an African American Historian who hosts traditional and spiritual educational events, and the Yeyeoba of Oyotunji African Village who practice priestly ways that were learned from her parents and global travels on traditional events.

In this exclusive interview with ADEWALE ADENRELE, the Yeyeoba of Oyotunji speaks about ancestral lineage, spiritual journey in the Sango temple, and African culture and tradition, plus her major role as Yeyeoba of Oyotunji Kingdom.

Below are excerpts:

Can you tell us briefly about yourself, your family and educational background?

I am a Dahomean/ Yoruba diaspora who was born in Black Mecca, you would know it as Harlem, New York. I was born and named “Ifabunmi Olubiyi Adesoji Adefunmi’’ by way of my African naming ceremony, and my American name is Fabunmi Olubiyi Adefunmi’ which was on my American government papers.  As the daughter of Oba Adefunmi I and Olori Olubunmi Adesoji, I am a diaspora child of the Oyo and Ile Ife Empire by my diaspora blood line.

I was born to the ruling house of Adefunmi, first Oba of Oyotunji African Village ‘Osejiman Efuntola Adefunmi I, and the first Olubunmi Adesoji the queen of Lukumi and the first Queen of Oyotunji. My parents, who were very strong traditionalist Yoruba priests, were very renowned in the priesthood in North America. I was born to a clan of Obatala priest on my father’s side. My mother’s clans are warrior women / iron women as well as Christian preachers, and Native Indian (Black foot and Edisto) medicine spiritualists.

Fabunmi riding horse at Oyotunji African Village

I was raised in the USA with western colonial ideology all around me; I am a grand descendant to Alexander Hamilton, the first treasure to the United States of America, also the grand descent to Robert Smalls, the first freed slave Senator to South Carolina. I am the grand daughter to Roy King who worked alongside the General Marcus Garve to help the Black star liner and assisting with the birth of Liberia. I was at the birth of the beginning of the nation we all now call Oyotunji African Village. I was raised in the Sango temple in New York until I was age 5, where for many nights my Yeye and baba with other priest held bembe’s and called the ancient Orisas to the earth.

Who influenced you the most in life and why?

My mother was the most influential in my life, she made me to be strong and never scared of anyone or anything, she made me very proud of my blackness when in this country call America frowned on the black people. My mother instilled in me the four elements of courage and I have lived by the rules till this day.

You are the Yeye-Oba of Oyotunji Kingdom, a royal princess and an ambassador of the royal crown; At the most simplistic level, an ambassador acts as a representative which you are one, what are your responsibilities and how have you impacted lives with your position?

Yes! I am the mother of King to Oyotunji African Village, I am the daughter of the first king of Oyotunji, I am the eldest sister to the reigning king of Oyotunji. I am in perpetuity to the Royal Crown, West African culture tradition spirituality of Ancient African religions.

I am also a representative of healing of the mind and body when in crisis, which is ruled with the divinity of the creator’s touch. My responsibilities are to work hard to educate and put forth the truth about our people and to help continue pride and proof of the great royals and rulers of great empires before antiquity, before slavery interrupted our ancestor’s time in the Empires of the humblest of humanity. I helped the spiritual children understand what that force is that compel them to want to return to Momma Africa. That force that they cannot understand, for my people in the diaspora, as well as globally, I supervise, manage and negotiate for the betterment for the kingdom of Oyotunji and the nation of the Yoruba and black race.

Yeyeoba of Oyotunji Kingdom
Yeyeoba of Oyotunji Kingdom

I hosted Black history events on the west coast of the United States. I promote the Orisa festivals held in Oyotunji African village every month, which is the only authentic African village in North America. I work in collaboration with the chiefs and Egbe’s of  Oyotunji African village and villages globally to help promote the West African culture tradition and spirituality of our ancestors in its purest form.

Also, part of my responsibility to the king is to report on my findings pertaining to the family of the Adefunmi and the village of Oyotunji, also to know of the crimes against the Diaspora Africans that were scattered across the world and to make the Diaspora in America and the world to know that you have a home in Oyotunji. I educate on the name of the land called Oyo and Ile Ife, the birthplace of our ancestor. For generation we in North America were never allowed to know the names to return home to. I give the names of the ruling Kings so when they return to momma Africa, they can visit the crown that ruled over our ancestors across the ocean back in mommas Africa’s arms long before the diaspora became diaspora. I educate on how to practice our ancestors’ ways opening without religious persecution. My responsibility is to give hope to our oppressed brothers and sister who are being gun-down in cold blood here in the diaspora on how to spiritually protect them and by shielding themselves with the Orisa.

You attended the World Obatala Annual Festival 2022 edition held in Ile-Ife, Osun State, Nigeria under supreme auspices of the His Imperial Majesty, Oba Babatunde Enitan Ogunwusi Adeyeye, Ojaja II, Ooni of Ile-Ife and the leadership of His Divine Grace Oba (Isoro) O.O.O Dada, The Obalesun Obatala Worldwide. What was the inspiration and motivation that drives your spiritualism on the attendance?

Its closeness of defining me, inline that gives birth to my ancestral lineage where I originated from, they made me who ways show me the way back to the creator to better understand the quality of being.

Read Also: https://africandevmag.net/2021/04/30/oyotunji-african-village-an-institution-for-cultural-tourism-by-adewale-adenrele/

The two-weeks annual festival programme that celebrates Yoruba religion, customs, culture and tradition through spirituality in purity, with the aim to bring together a wider audience of Obatala devotees, traditional worshipers, traditional and cultural institutions. What do you like about African Culture and traditions?

Being a Diaspora African American, my ancestor’s culture is unwavering, I love the ancient customs they still hold to be true.  I love the mystic and the beauty of the beginning of humanities manifestation of traditions that survive the birth, death and rebirth of Momma Africa’s children.

Visitors from different parts of the world such as; USA, Brazil, Trinidad & Tobago, Venezuela, Argentina, Cuba and more were in attendance of the festival. Can you share with us your experience?

An awesome experience!!! I lived in America with hundreds of different ethnicities, but to spend quality time with those many different devotees from around the globe was spiritually uplifting, it made my soul feel more of a connection to being home.

The festival continuously engages in by promoting the Yoruba Cultural agenda towards a veritable socio-economic and political emancipation of our people globally as a yardstick towards global development. How would you use your visit and experience to motivate other Americans who are African descent especially Nigerians-Americans to join you?

I use all my experience to educate and give proof and facts that knowledge is power and always seek the truth, my culture; tradition spirituality has been proven through science, throughout time, our ancestors’ ways is that of the ways of divinity that lives in us all.

L-R: Fabunmi and colleagues

This year theme for International Women’s Day, is “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”. Can you tell us how to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all?

Women are the ones who give birth to nations, we are the ones that raise the children of that nation, we are the ones who half to have equal sitting at the table of building and sustaining a nation for we are the mothers of that nation.

A lot of African nations are fashioning their democracy after the west, yet we exist in some level of neo-colonialism. Well, is there a way to localize democracy that will fit the African context? 

Our ancestors left us a blueprint, remember if you look at the Ogbonis, and the Oba council, they already have what we need but the seed of evil scamming, deceitfulness has manifested, and we must remove it from our DNA. We must know how to remove the corruption tree and we must burn its roots.

Researches put forward a new narrative explaining the variations in African ancestry in the Americas and how these variations were shaped by the transatlantic trade, how has you and many others changing the narrative for development?

Tribute to Alaafin

African Ancestry in North America, the land of the free the home of the brave, those words where never meant for us Chattel Diaspora , American Africans who built this nation. USA Diaspora who still used as target practice for the white man’s fear prophesy preparation for the last stance of the pure white race. I as a decedent of chattel slaves, has study the reason for the debauchery of my people here in North America. Just the fact that I am allowed to read and write, look a white person in their eye when I speak and not be murdered for it is a gift from the great Brave Black Men and women who came before me.

The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade took my ancestors humanity for generations, along with millions of ancestral lines. The slave trade took my ancestors language for generations upon generation from us and gave us the oppressors tongue. Still to this day we struggle to learn our ancestor’s original tongue we struggle to go back to Africa for we don’t know where to go, that is until Oyotunji African Village. The strength and resilience of my people brought forth survival tactics to live in this land, first they learned to survive by speaking to one another in an invented language called Geechee talk, , the Geechee talk was invented to help talk about things so the slave master could not know what was going on and used to trade with Indigenous of the North America .

Amazing memories are unforgettable; can you share with us the most amazing memory?

My most amazing memory was with my Yeye and Baba, they both were singing and drumming to SANGO  my yeye was singing oriki (Eulogy)  while my baba was drumming and me and my sister Fabayo were dancing, best memory ever.

How many languages can you speak fluently?

I speak 2 languages fluently and several others like Yoruba and French I struggle with it . Though the language was spoken amongst the free blacks and the red skin Indians of this land. As a DESCENDANT I speak Gee Chee fluently like I speak English. In America the chattel slaves lost their culture and their spirituality. As their descendants we fight every day to return to our ancestors’ ways.

We had to fight and scratch for every breath we take on this soil which has been fertilized by the blood of my people the Diaspora of North America, time after time. We the awaken generation now know the names of our ancestors lands the names of the kings, the names of the villages, we know the names of our Gods our ancestors’ ways. We know the name and way to Oyo Empire, We now know the name and place of the Ancient Holy city of Ile Ife, we know that we are from the land of the Benin the village of Abomey where my direct royal ancestor was stolen from.  We no longer cry for home for we know where she is now…

 What advice would you give the younger ones?

I would tell them to never forget who they are and where they came from REMEMBER your culture tradition and your own people’s spirituality

Thank you for sharing with ADM

Thank you. Alaafia o!

 

         ADM 2022

read more
Culture & Tourism

Nepal has the highest mountain in the world Mount Everest 8,848 meters- Bishwombhar Lamsal

Tourism is the largest industry in Nepal and its largest source of foreign exchange and revenue before the Covid-19 outbreak that claimed lives crashed the economy and affects the growth of tourism. It suffered a setback because millions of tourism workers are jobless due to the pandemic. Even though Nepal possesses eight of the ten highest mountains in the world, Nepal is a hot spot destination for mountaineers, rock climbers, and people seeking adventure.

Bishwombhar Lamsal, a tourism expert, consultant, and founding chairman & counselor, Vraman Holidays Pvt. Ltd shares his view with ADEWALE ADENRELE on “Pandemic and its Impact on Tourism”.

Below are excerpts:

Can you tell us the major attractions in Nepal; how would you educate interested students and potential tourists to visit Nepal?

Nepal is a country that lies between two giant countries India and China. Nepal has been blessed with the youngest and highest mountain on earth also known as the Himalayas. Nepal boasts of having eight the fourteen 8k meters mountains, the highest mountain in the world Mt. Everest 8848 meters is also in Nepal.

Nepal is rich in culture. We have around 125 ethnic tribes living in Nepal and each ethnic tribe has its traditions, customs, and culture. This multi-dimensional heritage combines the varieties of Nepal’s ethnic, tribal, and social groups, and it manifests in music and dance, art and craft, languages and literature, festivals and celebrations, and foods and drinks. With the diversity in altitude ranging from the Terai region to the Himalayan range. The landscape also varies from the lowland agricultural area and deserts to the high-altitude mountain range. Each landscape has its beauty.

Nepal is famous for Trekking; Peak Climbing; Mountain Biking Tours; expedition; Day Tours; Rafting; Wilderness Trekking; Adventure Sports Activities; Helicopter Tours; Honeymoon Tour Packages and Yoga Meditation Treks/Tours among several others. You define it; we tailor-made it. We have been continuously promoting our tourism/hospitality ventures/products and NEPAL as a whole at nearly all of the major international platforms viz: WTM; FITUR; ITB: OAS; CMT Stuttgart; MTS; VIT to name a few. On such platforms, we not only promote our company’s individual products/services but also NEPAL as a whole. We distribute our promotional materials in flash drives; brochures; websites and ads. This way we not only educate; we compel people of varied professions to come to Nepal at least once in their lifetime for life experiences.

What are the challenges you faced while doing travel and tourism business and how did you overcome them?

Tourism is always evolving and it never remains the same! Because the way we were bound to do business during the 90s/2000s and now has drastically changed! Major challenges at that time were guests visiting destinations on their own and facing problems on their way… We have numerous examples of guests missing/lost and death reports simply because they chose; to travel on their own without the support/assistance from the local experts/authorized service providers. Though problems persist, it has been drastically reduced to a significant degree. We become able in educating our guests about the consequences of traveling alone! We solopreneurs in collaboration with our government entity – Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) – are working for the welfare of our industry.

 In tourism, we have aspects of tourism like educational tourism, religious tourism, medical tourism, and cultural tourism, which area is Nepal’s selling point of tourism to the world?

Nepal is diverse and rich in every aspect of Tourism/Hospitality. Nobody will return empty hands/minds once they are in this amazing piece of land! We do outstandingly promote NEPAL as a destination for Education Tourism; (concept broadening) Medical Tourism; Cultural Tourism; Photography & Movie-Shoot Tourism; Honeymoon Destination and many more…

As the founder, chairman, and counselor of Vraman Holidays Pvt Ltd. in Nepal, how long precisely do you think global travel will resume to its normal pace?

Tourism/Hospitality is the HARDEST-HIT industry sector among ALL because of the Pandemic! This is no doubt! And, an amazing part of our industry is – it is capable of rejuvenating at the FASTEST pace among ALL, as well. Let me define this; for instance, people in agriculture, under normal circumstances have to wait several months to have their product being harvested, and we cannot do this all year round! Whereas in Tourism/Hospitality, we can serve our guests all year round! The industry impacts all other sectors! Tourists’ flow means increments in activities; many people get employment; there in consumption in provisions; food, local people are deployed at specific areas as per the needs of tourists. All sectors revive just because TOURISM revives!

Thus, under normal circumstances, I presume TOURISM is the fastest-progressing industry among ALL.

Early 2020 before the pandemic outbreak, global tourism celebrated a record year of travel. Now, it’s decimated and facing a recovery that could take some time. Can you tell us how the Covid-19 pandemic has affected the travel and tourism industry?

Words will be insufficient to describe the (global) impact – adverse effect – of the Covid-19 Pandemic on Tourism/Hospitality. This is a service industry and services are meant for luxury. When there arose a situation to choose between luxury and survival; anybody can choose between the ONE. For instance, people need products/goods to survive. But services are for thriving. During the Pandemic, our quest was the SURVIVAL! Thank God, we survived! And, we are confident that now we will thrive at the fastest pace!

The pandemic affects millions of people who depend on tourism and were laid off or furloughed. How do you think tourism can bounce back and survive?

Optimism | Faith | Resilient – we tourism stakeholders bear this trait to the highest degree than anyone in another industry sector! There is no doubt that we – the tourism industry – will be the fastest recovering industry sector among ALL. Tourism/Hospitality is the HARDEST-HIT industry sector among ALL because of the Pandemic! This is no doubt! And, an amazing part of our industry is – it is capable of rejuvenating at the FASTEST pace among ALL, as well.

Let me define this; for instance, people in agriculture, under normal circumstances have to wait several months to have their product being harvested, and we cannot do this all year round! Whereas in Tourism/Hospitality, we can serve our guests all year round! The industry impacts all other sectors! Tourists flow means increments in activities; many people get employment; there in consumption in provisions; food .. local people are deployed at specific areas as per the needs of tourists. All sectors revive just because TOURISM revives!

Many destinations anticipate travelers’ behavior will change in the virus’s wake. What measures have you put in place to sensitize and educate potential tourists/travelers to erase the fear of covid-19?

We are all aware at this point that Covid-19 is no JOKE. Standard health protocols are being deployed everywhere, at least in my country – NEPAL. We are sincere; desperately; in a healthier environment – awaiting our international guests to arrive; enjoy; entertain and thrive!

 African Development Magazine would like to partner us with media tour promotion and coverage of tourism activities, would you support this development and give us a chance?

For sure; we are together at every step of your action. Please go ahead.

Thanks for sharing with ADM

Thank you too.

ADM 2022

read more
Africa

TOURISM: Botswana to translocate 500 elephants to Mozambique

Two years after pledging 500 elephants to Mozambique as a gift, Botswana says the animals are set to be translocated in the near future.

This was revealed by President Mokgweetsi Masisi during a three-day state visit by Mozambique’s President Filipe Nyusi that ends on Good Friday.

“I wish to reiterate Botswana’s donation of 500 elephants to Mozambique. We look forward to their subsequent translocation to Mozambique in the near future and are very keen to see them finally roaming their new habitat,” Masisi told journalists during Nyusi’s visit.

Masisi first made the offer in 2018 according to Todayng reports.

The 15 000-strong elephant population in Mozambique is in the Niassa Reserve, a protected area, covering 42 000km².

Last year, it was reported that conservationists had discovered female elephants in Mozambique’s Gorongosa National Park which had been born without tusks.

Some researchers said the reason behind the tuskless elephants was an evolutionary response to the brutal killing of elephants for their ivory tusks during Mozambique’s 15-year civil war.

The large-scale killings were because of a rise in demand for tusks by criminal networks to fund the civil war in Mozambique.

Keep The World Wild, an animal conservation organisation, said between 2002 and 2013, the Central African forest elephant population dropped by 65% and its range shrank by 30%.

Some populations of savannah elephants have also suffered major losses in Tanzania and Mozambique, where recent surveys show their numbers have dropped by 60% and 40%, respectively in the past five years.

Mozambique’s National Administration for Conservation Areas (ANAC) said the country had lost an estimated 10 000 elephants between 2009 and 2011 in the Niassa Reserve.

Meanwhile, in Botswana, the Journal of African Elephants reports that “two massive bulls have been killed in the last few weeks in northern Botswana”.

The journal said one of the elephants had tusks weighing 45.3kg, making it the largest elephant to be hunted in Botswana since 1996.

The other elephant hunted had tusks weighing 40.8kg.

read more
ArtsCulture & Tourism

Culture & Tourism: The Genesis of Oyo-Ondo royal family bond

The history of Ondo-Ekimogun sprang from the Palace of Alaafin of Oyo in the ancient city of Oyo when the wife of Oba Alaafin Oluaso bore him twins (a male known till today as Orere and a female also known as Olu) which is forbidden in the Palace of every Oba in Yoruba land. The then Alaafin of Oyo loves the twin’s mother called Olori Olu so much and on hearing the news of the newly born twins, he lamented that this is a mysterious child “Ese-omo-re” which later transform to Osemawe as Oba’s title in the Ondo Kingdom.

The Oba Alafin Oluaso ordered that the twins and their mother be taken out of Oyo, he also gave instruction that one stroke of the intofacial mark should be cut on each cheek of the twins as kese or ibaramu mark will cause agony for them on their journey. The single facial stroke mark became an established custom in Ondo town till today. This is how Ondos are referred till the present moment as “Omo Mula meji si oju s’eye”

The twins were accompanied by the Alaafin of Oyo warrior’s leader called ija or Uja with their mother to a place called Epin in the then Fulani Kingdom. They later return to Oyo after the death of Alaafin Oba Oluaso in 1497 AD. The new Oba Alaafin Onigbogi also ordered them out of Oyo in 1498 AD with Alaafin warrior leader to the direction of Ile-Ife. They continue the journey until they reached a place called “Ita Ijama” This is how Ondo is referred today as “Ekimogun ara ita ijama”.

They continue with their journey until they arrived at Epe where Iyanghede of Epe received them with joy and splendours Royal hospitality treatment. This is how Ondo are referred today as “Omo Mude agogo mu omi”.

Revealing Africa Afresh- ADM

After a brief stay at Epe, they continue with their desire to look for a permanent settlement. They arrived at a place which is known today as Ile Oluji, where Olori Olu (Alaafin wife) slept for days and did not wake up (Ile ti Olu sun ti ko ji). After another short stay, Olori Olu and Princess Olu the female twins left the town with one Ogunja from Epe, leaving Prince Orere behind at Ile Oluji. They continue their journey until it ended at the foot of a hill known in Ondo to the present day as Oke Agunla. This is how Ondo are referred today as “Opon inu odi Ogunja.”

At the hill, they spotted a smoke rising from below and followed that direction down the hill and saw a man who simply identify himself as Ekiri neither a farmer nor hunter but a lost warrior from Ado Binni (now Benin City) who could not trace his journey back to his origin but decided to stay back at that particular spot where he was located through a smoke rising in the air with no wife or children. He  lives in a Hut (Awue – re do mi) which he eventually vacated for the Royal Princess as a mark of honour.

The man (Ekiri) later lead them to a particular ground known till today as Oriden where they tried to stick their yam stake prove futile as instructed by an Ifa Oracle before they left Epe. They were all happy and exclaimed “Edo do, Edo du do, Idi edo” which finally transmit to Ode Ondo during the ancient days. Princess Olu, the female twins also known till today as late Oba Pupupu finally became 1st Osemawe of Ondo in 1516 AD while Prince Orere the male twins also became the 1st Jegun of Ile Oluji.

The other historical Royal mark are cut unto the right breast of the descendant of past Osemawes from both male and female lineage with prestigious birth right to Otunba title as known and practiced till today. The Royal families and Otunbas title bearers in Ondo Kingdom are headed by Olotu Omo -Oba (Lotu Omo-Oba-in-Council) with official quarter at Oke-Otunba and its environs.

The Ondos are known to be traders, farmers or produce merchants. Their staple food is iyan (pounded yam) made from yam. The Ondos have their own peculiar dialect and very hard working. It must be noted however that Ondo emigrants settlers also founded many towns like Igbado, Igbindo, Ajue, Igburowo, Odigbo, Oro, Imorun, Ilunla, Erinla, Igunshin, Araromi, Araromi Obu, Ajebandele, Agbabu, Oboto, Bolorunduro, Fagbo, Tekuile, Owena, Oke-Opa, Aiyesan, Laje, Oka, Oke-igbo and etc. Although, we have lost some villages now towns such as Ajue, Odigbo, Ore, Agbabu, Ajebandele, Omotosho and etc to the creation of old Ifesowapo Local Government now Odigbo Local Government with its Headquarter at Ore.

The first Osemawe Palace was built by late Oba Airo (first son of Oba Pupupu) who became 2nd Osemawe in 1530 AD. Late Oba Adeuga Fidipote 11 built the first ancient modern Palace in Ondo when he became 40th Osemawe in 1935 AD while late Oba Festus Ibidapo Adesanoye – Osungbedelola 11 built the multimillionaire and befitting Osemawe Palace in Ondo after  he became the 43rd Osemawe of Ondo Kingdom in 1992.

The Ondo Chieftaincy title groups are the Iwarefas, Ikules, Elegbes, Ijamas, Olojas and Baales headed by the Osemawe. The Upoji Chiefs (Female Chief) is headed by Her Royal Highness Olobun of Ondo (Oba Obirin – Female Majesty).

The Popular traditional festivals in Ondo are as follows, Odun Oba, Odun Ogun, Odun Oramfe, Odun Moko and etc. The recent society modernisation or civilisations of the 21st century generation enhance us to enact Ekimogun Day Festival for developmental efforts with aspiration to bring all Ondo sons and daughters together every year to celebrate our heritage. I pulse here with due respect to honour and say kudos to His Eminence, late High Chief Ilemobayo Oreoluwa Akinnola MFR ‘Ojo Gbogbo Bi Odun’ (Lisa of Ondo Kingdom 2001 – 2013) who mute the remarkable and historic idea in 1987.

The Ondos embraces Roman Catholic Christianity in 1875 and accepted by late Oba Ayibikitiwodi while late Oba Jimekun accepted the CMS Anglican Communion in 1884 and Islam in 1888. The first Ondo citizen Catholic Priest late Rev. Father John Akinwale was ordained in 1947. The first Ondo citizen to be ordained as Anglican Bishop was late Rev. D.O. Awosika while late Rev. T.O. Olufosoye was the first ondo citizen to be ordained as Archbishop of Anglican Communion Diocese of Nigeria. The first Chief Imam of Ondo, Alhaji Muhammed Alimi was installed in 1888.

In conclusion, the Ondos are not proud as other people think but we usually defend our integrity at all time with genuine facts.

1. Other Cities or Towns people may see us in that direction simply because of our culture and orientation as a pure Ondo origin. Even though, at a sojourn host City or Country we are easily differentiated among other tribes in Yoruba Nation.

2. We like to accommodate people quite a lots and we always stand by our conviction irrespective of whosoever involved. We are not blessed with the attitude to tolerate any nonsense from anybody or anywhere by retaliating against any form of cheating in all ramifications.

3. Our dress code traditional attires simply dignified us in any society and we are easily noticeable by our public interactions at every level that we found ourselves. We also have a unique charismatic and unquantifiable good sense of humour that distinguishes the Ondos immensely from every other tribe in Nigeria as a whole and even Worldwide.

4. We are known as pace-setters and we always wage unplanned and successful war against any known or unknown oppression or oppressors. The Ondo’s are well recognized all over the World as pace-setters in every areas of life. We always lay the standard that other Community, Group of People and Associations has to follow in the society. Here we are today with the Special Grace of God.

5. The Ondos are known for a pride, proud of what they represent and we enjoy been well educated with civilized enlightenment. We believed in ourselves so much that make it difficult for us to be a servant for too long in any capacity. We magnificently cherish to be our own master of our various businesses or captain of industries. We are not proud as people think about us but we are genuinely stubborn to a fault.

 

Authored By,  Otunba Damilola Oladimeji POH, ECHGA, GIOU.

Ojo Gbogbo Bi Odun ‘II,’ Ekimogun Cultural Heritage Global Ambassador

Source: ekimogundescendant

read more
Africa

Famous Actor Jean-Claude Van Damme Gets Congolese Diplomatic Passport

Famous Belgian action film hero Jean-Claude van Damme, also known as the Muscles from Brussels, says he is thrilled to have been given a Congolese diplomatic passport – and says he aims to get other stars to visit the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“I am going to try to convince international stars like Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Jackie Chan, and many others,” the 61-year-old said in the capital, Kinshasa, as he accepted his passport and role as cultural, youth, and wildlife ambassador for the country as reported by airnewsonline

“There are also singers like Jennifer Lopez and footballers like Messi, Ronaldinho, Cristiano Ronaldo. They must come to the country to show that it is safe, to show that Congo can protect those in showbiz.”

DR Congo has faced decades of instability, with numerous armed groups still roaming the mineral-rich east of the country, killing, raping, and looting.

Revealing Africa Afresh- ADM

A one-time martial arts champion, Van Damme went on to star in big-budget Hollywood action movies such as Cyborg, Kickboxer, and Universal Soldier – and more recently voiced Master Croc in the Kung Fu Panda films. He is known for his tough-guy persona.

He surprised people at the press conference by saying he had actually been born in DR Congo, saying he was “a native of Likasi”, a city in the southeast of the country.

This would have been in the year that the country gained its independence from Belgium.

He also highlighted the importance of attracting investment into DR Congo.

“DR Congo is worth $36tn [£27tn] in minerals… my job is to find investors who understand that they have to give first before receiving, and to have a maximum honesty with President Félix Antoine Tshisekedi.”

However, some have questioned the actor’s new passport, as DR Congo’s constitution bans dual nationality.

read more
AfricaCoverCulture & TourismOpinion

EDITORIAL COMMENT

The Canon-Ishara Mara Partnership

A game changer for Kenya, Africa’s  eco/community tourism

Mohammed Abu,ADM,Accra

Community, cultural and eco-tourism together constitute an important integral part  of Africa’s wider tourism sectorial endowment  potential.

National tourism development frameworks in African countries should have strategic  Investment in tourism infrastructure and its marketing in order  to unlock it’s fullest employment and revenue generation potential.

The desert country,United Arab Emirates(UAE),offers an important case study from which  Africa could  draw useful lessons. The UAE stands dwarfed when compared with  the average African country in terms of eco-tourism potential.

The country can only boast, desert coastal and non-coastal ecosystems without any appreciable amount biodiversity other than well managed beeches  plentiful sand dunes, the date tree, camels and a few surviving plant species native to the country.

She cannot compare her self to the average African country  in terms of quantum of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem biodiversity via abundant river systems,lakes,wetlands,waterfalls,wildlife species of all kinds,etc.

Despite the foregoing eco-tourism limitations of the country,she  embarked on  substantial investments in innovative artificial tourists attraction spot  infrastructure projects like the world’s tallest hotel building in the sea,artificial islands,world’s tallest tower,shopping Malls, among others.

Driven by a tenacity of purpose and employing state of the art technology,,the country worked to  position herself as the hob for global tourism today and which is never in question.

According to both UAE official sources and that of the World Travel and Tours Council,the United Arab Emirates’s Tourism Revenue reached 25 USD bn in Dec 2020, compared with 38 USD bn in the previous year.

Tourism now contributes 11.5 per cent of Dubai’s GDP, an official UAE  statement said, adding that Dubai has been named the third-best city for capturing direct international tourism spend in the World Travel & Tourism Council’s 2019 Cities report.

On the part of the African continent as a whole, for the same period,in 2019, the industry accounted for about seven percent of Africa’s GDP and contributed $169 billion to its economy—about the size of Côte d’Ivoire’s and Kenya’s combined GDP. Africa’s travel and tourism sector employed more than 24 million people in 2019, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

It is therefore against this background that the recent announcement of the  Canon-Ishara Mara partnership deal  to launch the Canon Experience Centre in Kenya, dedicated to supporting  education and empowerment of people,is a welcome news.

Canon’s Experience Centre aims to raise awareness about  nature and wildlife whilst empowering the indigenous Maasai people by providing a unique and immersive photography, video and print experience at the national reserve.

The importance of environmental protection and conservation awareness creation among African ethnic communities cannot be over emphasized  since they are the custodians, direct and immediate beneficiaries of the ecology and its biodiversity.

In the same vein, they are equally those who would feel the immediate adverse impact of ecological degradation be in terms of wildlife or plant life which serves their food, medicinal and other needs.

Transforming local community members into content creators on various topics such as Human Coexistence with the environment and Wildlife, Maasai Tribe and Culture, Wildlife Photography, Wildlife Beauty, Protection, Preservation and Environmental Conservation is indeed a game changer.

Likewise, the initiative of  promoting and empowering women to become Maasai tour-guides by providing various training and educational opportunities.

Further supporting  the trained guides to purchase official Canon equipment through its exclusive packages designed for the Maasai tour guides as well as a referral scheme from Canon that will allow the Maasai tour guides to earn an added commission should a Canon customer visit the experience center is lot  more laudable.

While we of the African Development magazine, wish to specially commend Canon for its important youth and tourism focused initiatives in Africa as part of its CSR,we also world like to call on African governments to take a cue from the UAE and invest heavily  in tourism development infrastructure, destination branding and tourism marketing.

Granted Africa’s relatively endowed diverse forms of tourism endowments, the continent could do a lot more better to provide more employment for the youth and to derive more revenue for developing funding as a means of scaling down the continent’s much lamented debt burden.

We dare  add that, beyond the Canon Experience Center initiative in Kenya, moving on, Africa’s tourism Ministries and promotion agencies could may be consider well crafted strategic and mutually beneficial partnerships with Canon Africa.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

read more