Traditional Festival: Ondo's confusion as the government and king exercise their power

Traditional Festival: Ondo's confusion as the government and king exercise their power

Markets and shops remained closed in Akure, the Ondo state capital as directed by the Deji of Akureland, Oba Aladetoyinbo Adedelusi in observance of the Aheregbe festival.

This was in defiance of the counter directive given by the state government to the one given by the Deji of Akureland, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi.

Ondo state government had overruled the monarch on Thursday after the issuance of the directive by his Chief Press Secretary, Micheal Adeyeye, in a statement issued in Akure, directing all shops and markets in Akure the state capital to open for business.

But, markets and shops were closed across the state capital except in lsinkan community, where they insisted that they’re not under the Deji of Akureland and do not observe the Aheregbe festival.

Commercial activities were at its peak in lsinkan, as the traders said Deji’s directive didn’t affect them because they do not observe the Aheregbe festival in Isinkan Kingdom.

Oba Aladelusi, had said that ” the closure of the markets became necessary as part of the requirement in observing the age-long tradition of the annual Aheregbe Festival.

“It is important to emphasize that there shall be no trading or opening of shops under any guise during the festival.

“Residents, market women and shop owners are kindly enjoined to comply with this directive.

“However, only pharmacy shops and patent medicine stores are exempted from the closure of their shops during the festival

” The festival will not in any way restrict both human and vehicular movement.

But, the state government in a swift reaction through the information and Orientation commissioner Mrs Bamidele Ademola-Olateju, said that the state government had last year ruled against such closure of markets in any part of the state.

Ademola-Olateju said in a statement “On August 24, 2022, one of the decisions made by the Executive Council was that; there shall be no closure of market in any part of the state without the approval of the Governor.

“The statement credited to Mr. Michael Adeyeye, the Press Secretary of His Majesty, the Deji of Akure constitutes a clear violation of an existing order of the Government, and an abridgement the right of Akure residents to the pursuance of their livelihood.

“The public should note that even if approval was sought, such closure would have been limited to Ọjà Ọba (Oba’s Market) in Akure.

“We urge our respected Royal father, His Majesty, the Deji of Akure to respect the government’s decision and refrain from any action that can inconvenience, and, or inflict economic pain on Akure inhabitants.

“We also ask that the cordial relationship between the revered stool of the Deji not be drawn into open confrontation with the government.

“Akure residents are urged to go about their normal business on Friday and beyond, in pursuance of their freedoms. No market or shop shall be closed by anyone either by coercion or threat of force before, during or after Aheregbe festival.

“Whoever flies in the face of this directive will draw the ire of the government.

The commissioner said ” The government of Ondo State ask that; everyone should be law abiding and move about freely in the pursuit of happiness.

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