By Oluwafemi Popoola
Many support groups and a legion of supporters of the Nigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, on Tuesday, flooded the presentation and launching of the Yoruba World Centre project known as the International Center For Yoruba Arts and Culture (NCEYAC) in Ibadan.
The arrival of Vice President Osinbajo to the programme which kicked off 11:00 a.m. at John Paul 11 hall, opposite U.I Bookshop, University of Ibadan, was greeted with a rousing fanfare by the general audience happy to behold the physical presence of Nigeria’s second-in-command at the event.
On his arrival, Vice President Osinbajo, was ushered in to the Ibadan campus by the Vice Chancellor, University of Ibadan, Prof. Kayode Adebowale, and other management staff members of the institution, to the novel event which began under the chairmanship of the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, who also at the event.
Prior to the arrival of the Vice President as the special guest of honour at the event had witnessed a massive political campaign of songs for the Vice President by different support groups, members of the ruling All Progressives Congress, (APC) and many of his supporters.
The supporters are seen in a viral video holding welcoming and campaign posters which had the portrait of Osinbajo, dancing, singing and chanting the name of the Vice President in Yoruba language, tipping him to succeed his boss ahead of the 2023 presidential run.
The International Centre for Yoruba Arts and Culture (INCEYAC) was unveiled by the University of Ibadan in April 2020 by eminent Yoruba leaders.
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The Centre was put together by the Alaroye Newspapers Group as a research centre for researchers, journalists, writers and members of the general public interested in Yoruba history, arts and culture.
The organisers of the event in an earlier statement said, “the three-in-one occasion is being put together by the International Centre for Yoruba Arts And Culture (INCEYAC), the Institute of African Studies and the Yoruba Language Centre of the University.”
As stated, the programme will feature the opening of the Centre’s temporary base, the presentation of a full documentary on the Yoruba world Centre and the laying of the first foundation at the permanent site by the Vice President.
“The Yoruba World Centre when completed will have a big library, an archive, a museum, a recreation, reconstruction and digitising centre, a broadcasting and film village and an artificial forest (Zoo).
“The purpose of this according to Mr Alao Adedayo, a member of the Board of Trustees of INCEYAC and Publisher of Alaroye Newspaper, is to make the centre to serve as a one-stop shop, offering old, new, recreated and reconstructed materials for researchers, lecturers, students, authors, journalists, historians and members of the public interested in Yoruba history, arts and culture as a tool for nation building, national cohesiveness and mutual understanding,” the organisers said.
The publisher of a Yoruba newspaper, Alaroye, Alao Adedayo, one of the organisers, commenting in the statement, said: “Being the largest user of Yoruba language (in print) in the world today, and because of our daily interactions with the language, arts, culture and history of the people, through our newspaper, Alaroye, we can confirm that there is no one institution in the entire world where researchers, or anyone at all, can stay to conduct and complete works on the history, arts and culture of the Yoruba people.
“And we believe there should be one to help us in nation building. Thus, it is a great development that INCEYAC and the University of Ibadan are in this together.”