The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi Ojaja II has been accorded the highest honour of the city of San Jose, State of Minas Gerais, Brazil.
A statement by the spokesperson for Ooni, Moses Olafare, explained that the honour was accorded to the monarch during a visit to ‘Ile Ase Isegun Itesiwaju Aterosun,’ San Jose by the representative of Mayor of the city, Sergio de Paula.
Sergio noted the contributions of Ooni to the promotion of religious tolerance globally through his campaign for peaceful coexistence.
He added that, with proper education about other faiths and respect to the right of individuals to align with preferred religion, people from various religious preferences could co-exist peacefully.
Responding, Ooni of Ife, who was accompanied by a delegation of 105 people that included 17 monarchs, priests, culture promoters, artistes, academics and journalists, urged adherents of traditional African religion to educate adherents of other faith regarding misconceptions about their faith.
He commended the leader of the ‘Ile Ase’, Iyanifa Ifadaara and the authorities of San Jose for promoting peace amount people of diverse faith residing in the city.
The Co-chairman of National Traditional Rulers Council Of Nigeria urged people of other faith to seek for information about traditional African religion and advised them to desist from unwarranted attacks of the religion.
“If we are not attacking them for worshipping God in the manner they like, they should not stand in our way too. They should allow us worship God in the manner we like too.
“Lets us show love to those that hate us. Love conquers hate. More importantly, let’s educate those attacking us. They don’t know what we do. And we owe them that duty to explain to them why we worship God the way we do”, Ooni concluded.
Earlier in her welcome address, Iyanifa Ifadaara, told her guests that the worship centre has several adherents converging weekly to worship.
She pleaded with the African foremost monarch to visit Brazil on regular basis and work more towards uniting various interests among Afro-Brazilians community in the Latin American country.
Meanwhile, residents of Kilombo, otherwise known as ‘place of refuge for the slaves’ in Belo Horizonte, have called for an end to discriminations against them.
They accused the municipal government of Belo Horizonte of deliberately starving them of basic amenities, simply because they are blacks and pleaded with Ooni Ogunwusi to intervene on their behalf.
Ooni Ogunwusi told the residents not to be depressed but to unite and shame their aggressors with commitment to common cause and unity of purpose.
He promised not to neglect them and declared the residents royal blood separated from the origin by circumstances beyond their control.
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