The Ijebu people are known for a lot of wonderful and amazing things, not minding that there is a perceived notion that they have a tight palm. Among many other things, the Ijebu people like to party, there’s always an event in different parts of Ijebu every weekend. The sons and daughters of Ijebu from neighboring cities like Lagos and Ibadan and even as far as London, troop down to enjoy such occasions that make the Ijebu areas tick, also not leaving out the inhabitants of various Ijebu towns. One of such events is the annual Ojude Oba Festival.
The Ojude Oba Festival is usually celebrated on the third day after the Eid-el-Kabir (This year’s Eid-el-Kabir falls on the 13th of September) and it’s an avenue for various indigenes of Ijebu land to pay homage to the Awujale (the current Awujale is Oba (Dr.) Sikiru Kayode Adetona) of Ijebu land; the traditional Ruler of the Ijebu people. The festival started over a century ago when the first converted Muslims of Ijebu land visited the then Awujale (Oba Fidipote), appreciating him for giving them a rare privilege of practicing their religion peacefully.
The Ojude Oba festival which means, “the king’s fore-court or frontage,” and could also be translated as “majestic outing”, is a remarkable event and is also regarded as the most exquisite, intriguing and spiritual occasion in Ogun State, Nigeria. This age-long tradition is celebrated irrespective of religion, age, status or any other form of bias. It features equestrian performances, harmonious musical renditions, fascinating dance routines, traditional chants, colorful parades, lineage praises, anthem recitations, gift presentations, while the Awujale sits on his throne, admiring the beautiful event and gladly receiving his people from far and wide.
The event also features a parade of different age grade societies (mostly referred to as “Wompari“) pay homage to the Awujale and also present him with gifts, this parade is known as “Regberegbe”. The “Wompari” is an ancient traditional institution, created to manage the society into age groups, male and female, and for bringing development and progress to Ijebu land. Most of these groups comprise of captains of industries, politicians, businessmen and other notable individuals. They dance before the Awujale in their elegant and traditional attires while paying homage to him.
The Ojude Oba festival has grown from a visit into an evergreen, large and important festival sponsored by Globacom and other top organisations, the chance to partner with such vital occasion and also experience it, is valuable and profound.