The Paramount ruler of Ife Kingdom in the South Western part of Nigeria, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II has appealed to all African descendants in the world to unite for peace. The Ooni of Ife gave the admonition during his recent visit to Brasilia, Brazil’s capital as the royal guest of honour at the unveiling of the annual African Religion Day also called ISESE DAY.
This event was hosted by the President of Brazil, His Excellency Luiz Inacio Lila Da Silva. This was during the Ooni of Ife’s 5-day global tour for the African People’s Peace and Progress Agenda which earlier prompted him to visit the states of Sao Paulo, Rio De Janeiro, Salvador Bahia and Brasilia as part of an initiative which he tagged “Back to Home” targeted towards the unification of over 100 million Afro-Brazillians.
The Ooni had earlier addressed a special parliamentary session at the Federal House of Representatives Chamber in Brasilia which was organized to honour his visit. There, he called for African descendants around the world and the legislative arm of the Brazillian government to unite, join hands and give support to President Lula’s ideals of an inclusive Afro-Brazilian bill.
According to him, “Look at the good-looking Afro-Brazilians in this chamber who have stormed here to honour me. They all look like my first cousins back home in Nigeria and in other African countries, we are one people and the earlier we recognize the strength in our unity the better for us”
“We cannot afford to be divided again. We are one, irrespective of colour and race. President Lula is our pride, he remains determined to do well for Africa. That’s all I beg of you if truly we are one big family. What we need now is to unite for the growth of all persons and be good to all regardless of religious and cultural differences”
He also urged Afro-Brazillians to visit Africa, discover more about their past rich history, and invest in the development of the African culture and states as it is their root and original legacy. “I am sitting on an ancient throne of over hundreds of centuries, a sacred throne of the kingdom where most of you all migrated from. Beyond here in Brazil, I am delighted to inform you that you all have a home in my kingdom and there are free lands for you to come and build your homes across Africa”, he added.
During a press conference after the ISESE DAY event, he stated and appreciated Afro-Brazillians for their acts of support and love for the country and urged President Lula to keep to his promise of creating an inclusive pro-African government.
He stated that “I can remember very vividly when you visited Nigeria in 2003 during the former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s term, you still have the love and respect of the African People. We have you in our prayers and we pray that the Almighty Olodumare (God) continues to be with you, with your darling wife who is my daughter and your administration. Africa is proud of you”
President Lula in return assured Ooni Ogunwusi that his government is still unswerving in its mission to strengthen the bonds between Brazil and Africa which he described as the home continent of his people.
“Your love for us and our country is indeed well appreciated and I promise you of my continued love for Africa. I have visited 44 countries in Africa and opened 19 embassies because Brazil of my administration has a historic pact with Africa. My wife and I are extremely fulfilled as your presence here assures that this ISESE DAY has come to stay”
The Deputy Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives Chamber, Hon. Deputado Vicentinho Requerente in the same vein described the African monarch as a caring father whom the Afro-Brazilian community holds in very high esteem. He also revealed that his presence in the country has added to the dignity of the people of African origin in Brazil and this day will be marked as a great and unforgettable one in history.
The Arole Oduduwa who is also the Co-chairman of the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria (NCTRN) was accompanied by his Queens; Olori Mariam Anako Ogunwusi and Olori Aderonke-Ademiluyi Ogunwusi with an entourage of well-renowned kings in the Yoruba empire like The Ajero of Ijero Ekiti, Oba Adebayo Joseph Adewole, the Alara of Ilara, Oba Olufolarin Ogunsanwo, The Alapomu of Apomu Kingdom, Oba Afolabi Kayode Adenekan and the Alayemore of Ido-Osun, Oba Adedapo Aderemi.