Osun Osogbo festival ceremonies might have ended, but the glamour and public cultural exhibition added to the festival will continue to linger in the memory of the tourists and the people of the state at large.
Not fewer than 50 categories of masquerades participated in the annual festival, while hundreds of hunters, Sango, Obatala worshipers are in their full regalia to make the grand finale more colourful. Members of Odua People’s Congress (OPC) are also in thousands.
Most of the traditional rulers at the festival also appeared in competitive traditional attires dancing joyfully around the grove to pay homage to Osun Goddess to the admiration of foreign and local tourists.
Last Friday was the real market day of traditional accessories, costumes, and water containers used to fetch Osun water which the worshipers strongly believe in its spiritual efficacy and healing power.
The Ataoja of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Olanipekun, was surrounded by his Queens and the Osogbo High Chiefs to welcome social and cultural groups who were paying home to the royal father at the Osun Osogbo grove.
The grand finale, chaired by Senator Babajide Omoworare, representing Osun East Senatorial District, has in attendance, state government top functionaries and political office holders.
Governor, State of Osun, Rauf Aregbesola, represented by the Commissioner for Home Affairs, Dr. Simeon Obawale said that the state was blessed with different tourist sites, noting that the Osun Osogbo Festival is unique for attracting local and foreign tourists.
He promised that the government would continue to support Yoruba culture through tourism site development and encourage necessary documentations to showcase the rich culture of Osogbo people.
He congratulated the Ataoja for successfully hosting the 2017 edition of the festival and residents for creating an atmosphere of peace.
Oba Olanipekun, who is the host, expressed delight on the turnout of visitors at the festival.
He thanked Aregbesola and Sen. Omoworare for their support in ensuring the success of the festival.
Omoworare, in his remarks said the law establishing the Nigeria Tourism Development Commission would be reviewed to strengthen tourism development in the country.