Yoruba Nation Loading…Thank You Akeredolu!

The governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Akeredolu sets the pace for what is to come.

The Yoruba National Anthem will be sang all over Yorubaland.

The process has started and it will develop until Yoruba Nation is comfirmed.

There is no force under the sun that will stop the emergence and declaration of Oduduwa Nation.

The Re-education Of The African

The Re-education Of The African

By Adeola Aderounmu

Adeola Aderounmu

I have no doubts that we need to educate and re-educate Africans. My blog is not a source of historical facts, but I can reflect on what has been and I have a right to write based on my observations and inspirations.

There is no doubt that we have challenges in Africa. We do.

Sometimes I wish I could go out and preach, not as a lazy religious leader ripping the people of their hard earned monies, but as a preacherman asking the people to look deep into their souls and search within for the meaning of their lives and the significance of their existence in relation to their immediate habitat and in a global context.

In matters of African policy and politics, the intellectuals have been relegated and rendered insignificant. They have been pushed to the background, relegated and made voiceless.

Why do we need to educate and re-educate Africans?

We have lost touch with our culture.

We don’t speak our languages.

We don’t write in our languages. I am Yoruba and have not written Yoruba in several decades. I don’t know how to put marks on Yoruba letters. I am guilty. I need education

We need to teach us our culture and languages.

We need to teach us the goodness of our spiritualities and educate ourselves how to remove the evil part of our spiritualities.

We need to go back to our civilization. It was modern and progressive.

We need to find out why we lost the mind games that brought slavery and colonization to our lands. We shall not make the same mistakes now or in the future.

We need to wear our natural hairs and natural looks.

We need to write our own books and read them along with others. But ours must be the priority.

We need to educate ourselves and our children on the need to work together and build together.

We need the education and the re-education that will bring us glory.

We are AFRICANS.

Our stories and our existence go far beyond the origin of the Bible and Koran.

We owe it to ourselves to find out what went wrong.

I heard a brother asked: how did we fall to the foreign forces if our gods and ancestors were so powerful? It is a stupid question. It is like asking how the lizard got into your room despite the walls and windows. If you know how the lizard got into your room, you know the answer to your foolishness or carelessness.

We must with haste, re-educate everyone.

My generation may not achieve so much, but these things we write will help us and those coming after us to know that AFRICAN is the NUCLEUS of the world.

We need education and re-education.

This short essay does not say it all. I just wanted to wake you up. You’ve been sleeping since you were born.

Wake up and start your own re-education.

Start now!

aderounmu@gmail.com

The African Woman On Social Media: Where Is Your Dignity?

In a recent article, l wrote about how the Nigerian women in Nollywood have misrepresented the African woman. This article is a follow up to it.

The African Woman On Social Media, Where Is Your Dignity?

By Adeola Aderounmu

Adeola_2016

Adeola Aderounmu

In a recent article, l wrote about how the Nigerian women in Nollywood have misrepresented the African woman.  (https://adeola.blog/2018/02/24/nollywood-is-failing-africa-in-the-appearances-of-african-women/).This article is a follow up to it.

It is now generally accepted that for the African woman to be accepted as pretty or beautiful, she needs to be wearing a foreign hair popularly called wigs. The wigs come in various colours, sizes, forms and dimensions. As I previously pointed out, the industry provides jobs for several women and is a multibillion-dollar industry in Africa and globally.

The target is simple. It is the African woman who has lost her pride and sense of dignity. The present generation of African women dominating the social media, film industry and other social platforms have lost it completely. They are rich, they are famous and they are celebrities. But they lack one thing: self-dignity.

Again, l will go back memory lane. I am 46 years old and I remember growing up in Lagos, South-West Nigeria. My mother never liked the idea of my sisters putting chemicals on their hair and she frowned at it. Her take was that my sisters must always braid their hair the African way. It was the same for many families. Our parents did all they could to persuade our sisters and even some of us guys from using chemicals on our hair. The barber shop it was for us.

But just a couple of years down the lane. The dignity of the African woman has been completely eroded. She takes no pride in the colour of her skin. She takes no pride in the texture of her hair. She takes no pride in her curly, tangled hair. The African woman wants straight hair. It is so bad that so many African girls and ladies would not appear in public without the foreign hair.

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Omotola Talade-Ekeinde (@realomosexy)

It is going to be one of those huge tasks that we have ahead of us in Africa to reverse and revert the trend. But it is a cause some of us must continue to remind ourselves of. The celebrities and stars on Nigerian and African screens have failed Nigeria and Africa. They are big stars and they are the biggest hope of a trend reverse.

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Funke Akindele Bello (@funkejenifaakindele)

A few of our stars are featured here. There are several more. But we just need all of them to take up the cause and help us reverse the trend. They may also need help themselves because they will not be able to do something about it if they don’t realise that they too have lost their sense of dignity and African-ness. But with several million followers on Instagram and twitter, the best way to bring back the pride of the African woman is through these social celebrities and actresses.

Some may argue that they use the wigs for acting and work, but that argument does not hold water. What is wrong with acting and working with the African hair? Why must we act, work, live and go around with foreign hair? Why are we not proud of who we are and what nature endowed us with?

 

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Toyin Abraham (@toyin_abraham)

We need Africans to promote Africa. We need ourselves to sustain and maintain our values, culture and way of life. We have lost our languages. We have lost our mode of dressings. We cannot afford to lose our heads and our brains with the hairs. Something urgent need to be done.

In our schools, from the primary to the university, awareness need to be created about the pride of the African woman. One day l wrote to @iamlizzyjay about her natural hair and l implored her to keep it African. But l see how hard it is to remain pure and natural in the industry because she wore wigs a few times and went back to natural a few times.

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Linda Ikeji (@officiallindaikeji)

@calabarchic does not even know where to stay. She is also back and forth. She’s trying to keep her natural hair but the industry and the “norm” for what a woman in Nigeria should look like is creating a lot of confusion. It is like if you are not wearing wig or a foreign hair, you are local. That is how terrible the image and dignity of the African woman had been battered.

 

You have to feel sorry for the African woman especially from the entertainment industry point of view. They need help. We need help because their takes have destroyed our values and expectations of the women that nature gave us. We need a return to the basics.

 

 

We need role models of African origins to keep African culture and tradition.

I look forward to the day that African women will look 100% African again.

 

 

Oyinlola: How One Man’s Greed Destroyed The Centre For Black Culture

“The entire continent of Africa continues to be deprived of the services of the Centre for Black Culture and International Understanding because of the greed of just one man”

Oyinlola: How One Man’s Greed Destroyed The Centre For Black Culture

By Adeola Aderounmu

There are so many things happening in Nigeria that have contributed to the underdevelopment and retrogression in the land.

That we sometimes talk about these things without necessarily following them to logical conclusions means that Nigeria has an overwhelming loads of atrocities to drag along with her daily.

Since the atrocities are many and varied, it is too convenient to let go or forget some of them despite their grave implications either in deeping the crises that Nigeria faces as a country or in setting more precedents that give way to even more atrocities and crimes across Nigeria.

These crimes are profound among Nigerian politicians.

The story of how a greedy and corrupt Nigerian politician, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, grounded all the activities at the Centre For Black Culture and International Understanding (CBCIU) in Osogbo Osun State is a very sad one.

Oyinlola, Corrupt and Greedy

Oyinlola, Corrupt and Greedy

The CBCIU was established in 2007 during the tenure of Olagunsoye Oyinlola as the governor of Osun State. The establishment of the centre was under the cooperation agreement with the UNESCO Paris and in collaboration with acclaimed cultural experts Ulli and Georgina Beier, the government of Osun State and curiously the Olusegun Obasanjo Library.

Seriously, what has Olusegun Obasanjo Library got to do with the centre? Was it a clandestime plan to falsely acquire what belongs to others and a way to divert public funds to Mr. Obasanjo? It was not a surprise that Professor Wole Soyinka was vehemently opposed to the inclusion of the Olusegun Obasanjo Library as part of the partners setting up the centre.

The Osun State government paid 700 000 USD for the acquisition of the precious archives of the Beiers which would form the nucleus of the collections at the centre. The collections include documentation of various aspects of the Yoruba culture and tradition. The entire collection that should come from the Beiers are actually unknown but it is reported as being massive.

Apart from serving as a centre where records/archives are stored, the CBCIU was also expected to serve several other functions. CBCIU should have been the nerve centre of various cultural activities locally and internationally. The CBCIU was supposed to receive cultural troops from various parts of Africa and the rest of the world.

If it had been functional the CBCIU would have had conferences, seminars, lectures and syposia for all kinds of performing artists in Nigeria and from around the world.

It was such a prospect that made the federal government of Nigeria under whose laws the centre was established to pledge 400 million naira as annual allocation to the centre.

It must be restated that Oyinlola was the governor of Osun State and chairman of CBCIU when it was established in 2007.

In 2008 Oyinlola formally signed a law establishing the CBCIU.

According to that law, Oyinlola (stupidly) made himself the lifetime chairman of the CBCIU.

Unless one is arguing with a mad man, it is easy to see that this law is self-serving and deserves to land Oyinlola in jail. Only a criminal will convert a public institution into a personal or family business venture.

During his tenure as the governor of Osun State and doubling as the chairman of CBCIU, Oyinlola collected 400 million naira annually on behalf of the centre. When he was bundled out of office by the court in 2010, he became the National Secretary of the PDP, a position that was still strong enough to ensure that the 400 million naira landed safely on his table.

With a new government in Osun State under the governorship of Rauf Aregbesola,  the opportunity arose to end the reign of Oyinlola as the lifetime chairman of CBCIU. The board constituted by Oyinlola was dissolved.

The Osun State legislators enacted an ammendment in 2012 that allows a serving governor to be chairman of the board of CBCIU. The governor may also appoint anyone for this purpose.

Governor Aregbesola appointed Professor Wole Soyinka as the chairman of the center and Dr. Wale Adeniran became the Executive Director.

Dr. Wale Adeniran knows the history of the centre because in 2007 Oyinlola had asked him to write a letter of approval for the establishment of the centre. At that time Dr. Wale Adeniran was the director of the lnstitute of Cultural Studies at Obafemi Awolowo University.

Since this means of siphoning public funds for private use had been taken away from Olagunsoye Oyinlola, he continues to fight back. He has gone as far as protesting to UNESCO in Paris on a number of occasions. Is this the meaning of a fool’s mission?

Until this day, Oyinlola has continued to parade himself around the world as the chairman of the CBCIU.

There are allegations that the materials which may have included valuable art works and artifact that should be displayed at the centre were also carted away to Oyinlola’s private residence.

When his reign as the chairman of CBCIU was cut short in 2012 by the law enacted by the Osun State legislators, Oyinlola carted away all the files from the centre including all the financial records. These are clearly some of the traits of a criminal. In essence, Oyinlola and his team of tropical gangsters made sure that it was not possible to take over from them.

Today the CBCIU lies in ruin, covered with weeds and grasses and totally non-fucntional. It is noteworthy that Oyinlola did not act alone. With 400 million naira, it was easy for him to find staff, move them around or tell them what to do at all times, all just to make sure that he remains the chairman of the board.

The nucleus of the centre was to be the archive that was purchased from Beier family. Today the digitalisation of the archive continues in Germany. If Oyinlola hadn’t run the CBCIU as a private or family enterprise, the delivery of what was purchased or ordered would have been completed and all the functions of CBCIU, some of which are stated earlier would have been up and running.

It is also of interest that the Osun state government has refused to deliver the allocation of the centre to the present board that is supposed to be running the CBCIU. There are reports that the allocation appears on the budget of the Osun State government annually. So what happens to the money? Why is it not released?

It is ridiculous that the Osun State government under Ogbeni Aregbesola expects Professor Wole Soyinka and Dr. Wale Adeniran to give financial acount of the centre when in fact funds have never been released to them. Where is the funding for the CBCIU since 2012?

On Monday the 12th of October this case (yes it is now in court) will continue at the High Court in Osun State. Oyinlola and his lawyers will argue in favour of allowing Nigerian politicians to use their positions to acquire public properties and converting tax payers monies into family hereditary funds.

They will argue that Oyinlola does not have to explain what he did with 400 million naira that was given to him between 2007 and 2011. But really what did he do with the money? Is this the same Oyinlola that some people are speculating will appear on the ministerial list? Well, that won’t be a shock. Buhari has wasted 3 months only to assemble the same old corrupt people we know.

But seriously, there should be a public outcry against Oyinlola and he should be covering his head in shame at this time. Western Nigeria, Nigeria and the entire continent of Africa continue to be deprived of the services of the Centre for Black Culture and International Understanding because of his greediness. It’s shocking!

aderounmu@gmail.com

References

CBCIU: For Culture or Penkelemes? By Wole Soyinka. Chairman Centre For Black Culture and International Understanding, Oshogbo, Osun State, Nigeria.

CBCIU and the Lilliputians of Culture by Wale Adeniran, Executive Director, Centre For Black Culture and International Understanding, Oshogbo, Osun State, Nigeria.

STOP PRESS

Professor Soyinka resigned from his post as the chairman on saturday 10th of october 2015.

Dr. Wale Adeniran also resigned as the Executive director of the centre.

The primary reason for their resignations is because of the way the Nigerian press/media presented the story even until this moment. The media made it sound as if the problem is between Wole Soyinka and Oyinlola whereas the problem is actually between Osun State and Oyinlola.

Nigerian media sometimes does not show common sense when reporting issues. How can they fail to crucify Oyinlola for making himself the life time chairman of a public institution?

CBCIU: for CULTURE? Or ‘PENKELEMES’?

By Wole Soyinka

TEXT of Professor WOLE SOYINKA’S ADDRESS to the NIGERIAN MEDIA on the  “CENTRE FOR BLACK CULTURE AND INTERNATIONAL UNDERSTANDING,” Oshogbo, on September 1, 2015 at Freedom Park, Broad Street, LAGOS.

CBCIU: for CULTURE?  Or  ‘PENKELEMES’?

Gentlemen of the Press,

One way to summarize the situation of the Centre for Black Culture and International Understanding (CBCIU) at this moment requires no deep elaboration. It goes thus: There is Law, and there is Ethics. Wherever these two arbiters of public conduct appear to clash, even Ethics must bow to Law.  On the other hand, it is useful to remember also that the sinews that bind civilized society together are strengthened when both – Law and  Ethics – converge, and are harmonized in a public cause.

To come down to the specifics of the Centre for Black Culture and International Understanding, I require no convincing that this ideal harmonization was manifested when the lawmakers of Osun State enacted, in 2012, an amendment to the original CBCIU law that had been signed into law by Governor Oyinlola on 29th December 2008. That origjnal law, in my view, was profoundly unethical.  The Amendment, by the succeeding House of Assembly, signed into law on the 31st day of July, 2012, was clearly designed to inject an ethical corrective into the original law.

I am not qualified to comment on the legal intricacies of the provisions in either, if any – this must be left to “our learned friends” of the legal profession. They have however advised that the July 2012 amendment supersedes the original, and that this Amendment constitutes the current law within under which the CBCIU obtains its validity, until overturned under a new Law enacted by a chamber of equal or superior jurisdiction. For direct public enlightenment, the heading of the Document of Assent goes thus:

STATE OF OSUN, NIGERIA

OSUN STATE CENTRE FOR BLACK CULTURE AND

INTERNATIONAL UNDERSTANDING

(AMENDMENT) LAW, 2012

Assented to by the Governor of Osun State on the 31st of July 2012

No court judgment exists that voids a single provision of this law – including the setting up of a new board – or its entirety.

It is important that this nation, and the entire world of culture and ethical pursuit understand this. Contrary to whatever has been propagated so assiduously by some parties of interest in various quarters, NO court order exists that prevents the Board that was established under the 2012 Amendment from exercising its rights and responsibilities. NO court order exists that compels the Governor or House of Assembly to reinstate the former Board Chairman of 2008.

NO relief has been granted to the ex-governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola, that authorizes him to present himself to the nation and the world as the substantive chairman of the CBCIU (or ‘Emeritus Chairman’ – among other titles that he has since accorded himself.) This is the legal position – as the Board remains advised by Osun State government’s legal department.

If these experts are proven wrong, then the current board will bow out without one second’s delay, led by its current chairman. It will most gladly hand over all CBCIU effects in its possession and even tender a public apology to the ex-governor, his ‘Board Members’, his campaign team and indeed any other interested parties.

From the corporate, we move to the individual. Here, I wish to outline the  section of the Amendment by the Osun House of Assembly that remains of primary interest to me, personally. It is that portion which articulates, in accessible language, that much desired convergence of Law and Ethics which, as earlier proposed, offers society a basis for civilized existence. I quote:

“Section 8 of the Principal Law is hereby amended by substituting

thereof the following provisions:

(a) The Board shall consist of the following members:

(i)  The Chairman of the Board who shall be the Governor or anyone appointed by him for this purpose…..

For emphasis, I call attention to that section again which states: “who shall be the governor….

In contrast, the parallel provision in the original, now ineffectual law, signed by Prince Oyinlola, states –  “who shall be Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola”.  Oyinlola to Oyinlola, and Oyinlola for ever and ever – Oyinlola!

What the Amendment legislates is that the CBCIU is public property, established and maintained with state funds, funded by the state, housed by the state, instituted by elected representatives of the people. It is not private, hereditary property, not even of the most elevated royalty.

To my ears, this is ethical music.

It should be of interest to reveal that I had a private meeting on this issue with the Director-General of UNESCO, Madam Irina Bokova, when she and I attended an event nearly exactly two years ago in Kazakhstan. I had learnt, not too surprisingly, that the former governor of Osun State, Prince Oyinlola, had made forays into UNESCO headquarters, Paris, to protest his removal from a position he had created for himself while governor – and in perpetuity.  Invited to that meeting, once I raised the issue, was Hans d’Orville, one of Madame Bokova’s most senior aides. I asked her how UNESCO proposed to handle what was gearing up to become quite a penkelemes  (courtesy Adelabu) for all parties in this unseemly development.

Hans d’Orville confirmed that the Prince had indeed written protest letters to UNESCO and also shown up a number of times in his own person, sometimes with a delegation.  Hans d’Orville informed his Director-General and I that he had already responded to Oyinlola’s written appeals, and that, on each personal visit, he repeated exactly what he had written to the prince, namely, that CBCIU was set up under the laws of the host country – that is, of Osun State, Nigeria – thus, UNESCO could not interfere in a situation that would contradict the provisions of such laws.

UNESCO’s Director-General nodded in agreement, saying: “That is exactly my understanding.”

Then she, in turn, wanted to know what was the real story behind the development. I warned her that the issue had a very long history. We were all rather pressed for time, needed to catch flights in different directions. So I proposed that, instead of rehashing the tortuous details, I would pose a hypothetical question to her. I said:

“Let me ask you a simple question. If you decided to leave UNESCO tomorrow, would you use UNESCO funds to set up an entity, any kind of institution, use your position to channel an annual disbursement from UNESCO’s coffers, receive and dispense funds, and make yourself, in your personal capacity, head of that organization – and for life?”

She recoiled in horror. “No-o! That would be highly unethical. Such a thing is not possible”.

I added: “That about sums it up. The incoming governor of Osun State took exactly such a position, embarked on steps to dissolve the board and constitute a new one. The erstwhile, self-appointed Life Chairman has gone to court to contest that position. My advice is that you keep UNESCO away from the ensuing splatter while we clean up our own mess internally – we are quite used to it.”

That was in September 2013. As a member of UNESCO’s High Panel for Peace, I have interacted with Madame Bokova at a number of events since then, as well as with Hans d’Orville before his departure from UNESCO. I was made aware – from numerous sources – that Oyinlola, aided by the  former Nigerian representative to UNESCO, Dr. Omolewa, continued to wear out carpets leading to the Africa desk, to numerous offices and national delegations to UNESCO.

However, I studiously refrained from raising my concerns with the Director-General or indeed any other serving UNESCO official, right up to this press conference – which shall be copied to UNESCO.  Moreover, the Prince continued to make overtures to Governor Arigbesola, and myself, and to leaders in his new political party, pleading that they intervene so that he could be reinstated on the board in any capacity, however subordinate.

I left that plea to the governor entirely – since it remains his prerogative. I did assure him however that I would not stand in the way. I shall reveal here that I went even further – albeit against the grain – but in order to save the nation from international embarrassment through an obsession that I could not yet fully understand – I accommodated Mr. Oyinlola so far as to propose to the governor a Special Board Membership, tasked with responsibility for traditional royal cultures.

Simultaneously however, as was certainly within his fundamental rights, Mr. Oyinlola pursued his legal challenges, having first made off, even till today, with all the files – including every scrap of financial records – of the Centre. While the courts tried to address the conundrum of a life appointee being dispossessed while still very much alive, Mr. Oyinlola chose to pre-empt the courts’ decision. Aided, and even physically accompanied by Nigeria’s former representative to UNESCO, Dr. Omolewa, who was familiar with the interstices of that institution, Oyinlola commenced a campaign, both internally and externally, to disseminate a fraudulent version of the court proceeding. The prince has claimed – and still does! – that the courts had indeed found for him, and that he is back in office as chairman of CBCIU.

Our legal advice is that no basis for such a claim exists! What we do know – and this is clear from the actual court records, not the disseminated, bowdlerized versions, even for the “unlearned” – is that the Court has not even touched the substance of Prince Oyinlola’s appeal for reinstatement!  The only effective law, we are firmly advised, remains the July 2012 Law enacted by Osun State House of Assembly.

That leaves us – at least for now – with what primarily interests me, as a citizen dedicated, not only to the Rule of Law – but to the ethics of governance.  Without incurring the wrath of the courts for “contempt”, I believe we are entitled to indulge in a transformative debate on the ethics that underlie the provisions of both laws, taken together and in contrast.  That debate, the genesis of much of a continent’s post-colonial woes of devastating dimensions, is sometimes described as the “sit-tight syndrome”. It consists of the corrupt privatization of  public entities – including nations – with all their assets, even the intangibles! My ever growing conviction that this is a long overdue discourse, limitless in scope and ramifications, to be pursued as a continent-wide undertaking

My immediate contribution to that debate shall be phrased along the same terms as I addressed Madame Bokova in Kazakhstan, only, this time, it is addressed to this nation’s president, General Buhari, who has unusually elevated the anti-corruption struggle to the very top of his governance agenda. I must warn General Buhari – in the absence of a Foreign Minister – that, as a consequence of activities of this “CBCIU” double, the nation is being dragged into a sleazy situation through the attempted co-option of its foreign missions into logistical support for their global enterprises.

And so to the question:  “When you leave office, General Buhari, will you also carve out a privatized entity  – cultural, educational, political, religious, socio-economic, perhaps even a military unit or whatever – for yourself from public funds, provide it an annuity from the nation’s treasury, empower it to receive funds from internal and external sources, and make yourself, in your own individual person – that is, as Muhammadu Buhari – its Executive Chairman, and for life?”

Wole SOYINKA

Chairman, Centre for Black Culture and International Understanding (CBCIU)

Oshogbo, Osun State, NIGERIA.

 

DISTRIBUTION LIST:

Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, Governor, Osun State

Director-General, UNESCO, Paris

CHAIRMAN, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission

Chairman, The Presidential Advisory Commission on Corruption

The Nigerian Ambassador to Brazil.

The Brazilian Ambassador to Nigeria, Abuja

IPEAFRO, Brazil

The Director, Iwalewa-Haus, Bayreuth University, Germany