COVID-19: Ondo Restricts Attendance at Akeredolu’s Inauguration Ceremony

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Oluwarotimi Akeredolu

James Sowole in Akure

The Ondo State Government yesterday said attendance at programmes for the inauguration ceremony of Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu’s second term in office would be restricted to maximum of 500 guests.

The Chairman of the 25-man Inauguration Committee and Deputy Governor-elect, Mr. Lucky Ayedatiwa, stated this while briefing journalists on the activities lined up for the ceremony that would commence on Tuesday, February 22,2021.
The Deputy Governor-elect, said the restriction for the events was due to the ravaging COVID-19 Pandemic.

Ayedatiwa, who was flanked by the former Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Donald Ojogo who is the Chairman of the Media Sub Committee of the ceremony, said all the programmes, would be indoor.
The inauguration programmes, according to him, would be held inside the State International Events Centre, The Dome while the Jumat Prayer would be held at Central Mosque Owo and the Church Thanksgiving Service, would be held at St. Andrews Anglican Church, Imola Owo.

Specifically, Ayedatiwa emphasised that attendance at all events, would be strictly by invitation.
He explained that those that would attend the proper inauguration ceremony, on Wednesday, February 23, at the International Event Centre, Akure, the state capital would not be more than 500 while 400 people would be allowed to attend the dinner coming up in the evening of the inauguration day.

He said, “It is important to stress that attendance at every function will be strictly by invitation. This is in order to control the crowd and reduce the risks associated with COVID -19. In other words, the venues will be a no-go area for individuals without official invitation cards.

“For more emphasis, the Dome which sits full capacity of 1,800 guests will now sit 500 for the inauguration while it will accommodate only 400 for the state dinner later in the evening,” Ayedatiwa said.
A major event of the inauguration ceremony, is the inauguration lecture entitled ‘Towards a New Nigeria from Federal Fatherism to Commonwealth’ to be delivered by the President of African Development Bank, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, which comes up on Tuesday, February 22.
Other events lined up include School Debate among secondary schools, World Gyration by Kegites Club, Anniversary Dinner and commissioning of projects.

Ayedatiwa described the school debate and the presentation of awards won by Ondo State public schools, which is one of the activities for the inauguration ceremony, as a well-thought-out component of the ceremony with a specific focus to elevate and celebrate our youths in the state.

“It is also to serve as the melting pot for the general public consisting of parent, teachers and students and government thereby ensuring the involvement of all layers in the society in the enthroning of the government they truly voted in,” he said.

Ayedatiwa also disclosed that there would be inaugural feasts in the 18 local governments areas of the state on Saturday.