With the laying of the foundation of the Oodua Heritage House by The Arole Oodua and Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II and the gaming magnate, Sir Adebutu Kessington, popularly known as Baba Ijebu, the tourism and cultural landscape of the ancient town of Ife is about to be reshaped positively.
The building which was initiated, designed and sponsored by Kessington is a multimillion naira edifice, structured to be a monument for the entire Yoruba race.
According to a breakdown given by Akogun Kola Onadipe while presenting the model of the building before a happy crowd during the foundation laying ceremony recently, the Oodua Heritage House when completed will have a museum where Yoruba artefacts and other historical materials will be kept and displayed for local and foreign tourists.
Also, it will contain a fully equipped Yoruba library for knowledge seekers, an open field for events and sporting activities as well as an Imperial Banquet Hall among others.
This development was applauded by the Ooni during the foundation laying ceremony recently.
In his words, “You have immortalized yourself with this structure and other good works you have been doing for our race. Oduduwa and other ancestors of ours are watching and I am sure that they are proud of you. We can’t but keep thanking the Almighty Olodumare for your good life which you have dedicated to prompt service to humanity. On behalf of the Yoruba race and the entire Oduduwa people worldwide, I thank you for giving us this unique gift,” Ooni said.
Responding, Adebutu thanked the Ooni for providing him with a platform through which He could serve the Yoruba race, adding that he is more passionate about the project because of its benefits to the unity of the race.
Already, Ife is home to buildings of several hundreds of years and with this latest development, the ancient town of Ife is set to welcome thousands of tourists yearly and reshape the cultural landscape of the Yoruba race.