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Ibadan; New Obas Host Masquerade dance festival in spite of Olubadan’s ban

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By Trevor Olakunle

Despite the order given by the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji that hosting masquerade dance in the Compounds of the recently crowned Obas in Ibadanland this year was banned for security reasons, the newly coronated Kings hosted this year’s masqurade dance festival at the Oba Balogun’s Aliiwo residence in Ibadan.

There has been speculations as to weather the ban will be regarded or not as the new KIngs has earlier issued a counter statement to Oba Saliu Adetunji’s ban. As to this, there were hundreds of people including majority of the new kings installed by the Governor Abiola Ajimobi at the residence of Oba Balogun.

Before the arrival of other Masqurades, prominent masquerade, Atipako performed the ritual by beheading a dog to appease Ogun the god of Iron,after which the masquerades took turns to entertain their hosts.

While addressing the joyful crowd, Oba Balogun said, “I don’t know what the Olubadan stood to gain from his ban action. He went to the extent of stopping the Atipako, a prominent masquerade and also some people from coming. I have hosted this event for more than 6-7 years.” This is our culture and Himself as a custordian of the culture must do what is necessary to promote and uplift our culture, that is what we stand for..

“Olubadan does a lot of strange things. This is one of them, it is very strange. He (Olubadan) applied to the former Olubadan while He was still a Chief, that he wanted to host the Masqurades and he was allowed. He now became the Olubadan, he wanted to stop others from hosting it.”

Present at the occasion is the Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Toye Arulogun represennting the State Government, others were Oba Tajudeen Ajibola, Otun Balogun, Oba Eddy Oyewole, Ashipa Olubadan, Oba Amidu Ajibade, Ekaarun Olubadan, Oba Kolawole Adegbola, Ekeerin Balogun, Oba Abiodun Kola-Daisi, Ekerin Olubadan, Oba
Owolabi Olakulehin, and Balogun of Ibadanland and Mogajis (family Heads).

Commenting at the event of the Masqurade dance festival, one of the crowd, a middle age man who simply introduced himself as Saheed said he was happy that this year’s Masqurade dance event holds, despite the ban made by the Olubadan, he said it is always a thing of joy for him to come out and watch the masqurades dance, something he has been doing for over a decade now, he said it is a way of upholding the cultural beliefs of our fore fathers as masqurade festival in Yoruba land indicates visitation of the Spirit of our fore fathers from the land of the Dead to the land of the living and it holds once in a year, though there has been cases of rival clashes by hoodlums during previous occasions, but that is not a justification for Olubadan to have issue a ban on the festival, he added.

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