The Erelu Kuti IV of Lagos, Abiola Dosunmu, has stated that the controversy over ownership of Lagos would soon be put to rest with her new initiative.
Dosunmu, who is also the Erelu Yeye Oodua, stated this while briefing journalists on the forthcoming inauguration of EYO Cultural Renaissance Centre which will hold on December 3, 2023, in Lagos.
Speaking on the controversy trailing the history of Lagos State original settlers, she said one of the reasons her foundation (Erelu Yeye Oodua Foundation) instituted the new centre was to address such controversy relating to history, culture, art, lifestyle, and other traditions of Africans.
Erelu Dosunmu disclosed that very soon, the new centre, which is hinged on research, empowerment, education, training and promotion of culture and languages, would unveil a book to put end to the controversy on who owns Lagos.
She said the issue on who founded Lagos should be based on documented evidence and not hearsay or sentiment.
According to her, “First of all, have spoken about this issue several times. And you see, if the people refuse to use common sense and do research and use relics for their argument, why do you waste your time.
“All these things that have been said, you have the evidence, relics and proofs for a whole lot of them, to be able to bring the story to the right perspective.
“Everybody is talking from different corners of their mouths, especially those who don’t even know anything about it.
“How old are they, how many of them who are kings today actually grew up within the environment where they could be impacted with the authentic history of their people.”
The cultural icon said: “I became Erelu at my early twenties, and I was sitting with 80 and 90 year old men, and those men had at least another 90 years of experience and narrative verbatim before I started getting it from them. So already, 200 years verbatim story, I got it from the source. I am almost 80 and I have acquired another century of information by myself.
“If I say anything, I am saying it from at least 300 years of verbatim fact. So, some people talk from here another one from there, who are they, what was the point of their entry?”
Speaking further, Erelu Dosumu said it is important for the government and critical stakeholders to collaborate towards rekindling the interest and increase consciousness of people to promote the potential of their culture to the world.
She stated that the Oodua Cultural Renaissance Centre would be a training ground for languages, promotion of local cuisine, art and in the long run build talents and the economy.
“Nigeria is blessed and rich in culture and the sector can add enormous value to the national GDP if well harness, as government must ensure continued support for individuals and groups working to scale up the enhancement of the country’s cultural heritage,” she added.