Hammed Shittu in Ilorin
No fewer than 500 beautifully decorated horses and dignitaries would on Wednesday participate in the Ilorin emirate grand durbar that would be led by the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari to mark this year’s Eid-el-kabir festival.
The cultural celebration will take place on the second day of Eid-el- kabir celebration at the frontage of Emir’s palace in Ilorin.
The chairman of the durbar committee, Mr. Sulyman Yahaya Alapansanpa, who briefed journalists about the significance of durbar celebration at the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), press center, Ilorin yesterday ahead of the event said that unlike in the past, this year’s durbar will be extended beyond the emir and royalty.
He explained: “Durbar is the unique ceremonial display and cultural processions of well decorated and garrisoned horses usually and beautifully mounted by the royals , chiefs, princes and some other eminent citizens of a given emirate to celebrate an important cultural epoch or religious event or , sometimes ,the presence or visit of an August dignitaries. Thus the forthcoming durbar cultural festival has no any political intention’’.
Alapansanpa said the event was being organised to promote the rich cultural heritage of Ilorin emirate and guard against cultural imperialism that was fast eroding the cultural values of the people.
“Durbar is to prepare the entire Ilorin emirate community against the deep danger inherent in unguarded Cultural dynamism of our contemporary time and the threat of growing cultural imperialism which if left unchecked may destroy the fabrics, essence and organic foundation of our basis as a unique people within the context of the Nigerian nation.”
He further added: “The organisation of durbar will also discourage the penetration of foreign culture into the psyche and consciousness of our often impressionistic younger ones, who opened and often exposed to attractive but destructive cultural products of the western world and their allies.
“With the continuous future and regular organisation and their participation in one way or the other by our growing population they will surely develop affinity for what it is ours and do away with what is detestable”.
He further explained that durbar will also douse the acrimonious tension and socio-cultural apathy “the perennial haphazard staging of baseless, meaningless and pernicious social carnivals by some restive, and poorly guarded youthful groups across the emirate and halt the appalling tendencies of promoting cultural illicits , drug addiction, thuggery and sexual misdemeanor that come with it and among participants and which are sometimes visited on innocuous, helpless and innocent young members of our community.”
In his speech, the National President of Ilorin Emirate Descendants Progressives Union (IEDPU), Ambassador Abdulazeez Usman called on indigenes of Ilorin, living outside the town to come home and be part of the unifying culture.
The secretary of the committee, Dr. Ibrahim Jawondo, who is also the Director for Center for Ilorin Studies, University of Ilorin, assured all the invited dignitaries and corporate organisations coming to showcase their products of adequate security.