In a move to honour and commemorate the Isese Day celebration, Lagos state government has officially declared Monday August 21, as a work-free day.
This decision was formally announced through a statement released by Hakeem Muri-Okunola, the head of service for the state.
“The move is aimed at fostering the appreciation of indigenous culture and traditions while preserving the state heritage,” Muri-Okunola said.
He added, “The announcement underscores the unwavering commitment of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to extend vital support to traditional institutions within the region.”
By designating this special holiday, the administration aims to foster the promotion of indigenous practices, particularly those associated with the Yoruba traditional religion, which the Isese festival profoundly represents.
The Isese festival, a revered annual observance falling on August 20th, holds paramount significance for adherents of the Yoruba traditional religion.
This occasion serves as a conduit for believers to honor their cultural heritage, celebrate ancient customs, and strengthen their spiritual connections.
However, the celebration has recently ignited a spirited discourse in the city of Ilorin, situated in the Kwara state. Controversy arose when proponents of the Islamic faith advised a priestess against observing the occasion.
This development resulted in a prohibition of the traditional religion practitioners from participating in the festivity within the Kwara state.
The Isese Day declaration by the Lagos state government, while celebrating cultural diversity and heritage, also signifies the need for respectful coexistence and dialogue among various religious and cultural communities in Nigeria.