The Minister of Tourism, Culture and National Orientation, Edem Duke, said the Federal Government would help in the expansion of the Sango festival to increase tourism.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the festival in Oyo town, Duke’s address was read by Prof. Akin Alao of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife.
The minister described Sango as one of the founding fathers of the ancient Oyo Kingdom, recalling that “he left behind an enduring legacy of constitutional government, a model yet to be surpassed by any modern contraption.
“Pre-colonial system of government in Oyo was built on an elaborate system of checks and balances which made adequate provisions for and accommodated the culture and sensibilities of the people.“
“In essence, it was a people’s original design to meet the wishes and aspirations of the people and their definition of development.
“When we are looking back, we are trying to re-define the system of government in order to establish a responsible and responsive government,” he said.
He said a thorough study of the knowledge system and society that produced the archetypal African system in Oyo would provide the direction missed in the past.
The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, commended dignitaries who turned out for the event, saying they cut across the South-West states and Yorubas in the Diaspora. He urged the people not to mix religion with culture, noting that “they are two distinct features of human life and by allowing one to affect the other is to render man incomplete.’’
Adeyemi also admonished the people not to allow the younger generation to discard Yoruba language and culture.