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GLITZ AND GLAMOUR @ OPU LAUNCH IN BAMAKO, MALI ...Convener, Otunba Dr. Gani Adams' Message To Mali OPU

The Launching of Oodua Progressive Union, Mali Chapter took place last Friday in Bamako, Mali. More pictures from the event below…


It gives me great pleasure to be here in Bamako, the capital city of Mali which world tourism experts call "The Lonely Planet", "The Ribbon of Life In The Desert". I am full of praise to ELEDUMARE, the all knowing, all seeing, omni-potent, omni-present, the only one who can say "I AM" that is the only "I AM". The giver of life, the source of humanity, the one who give ideas, and also provide the needs to see the idea turn to reality.

Today, I stand before you because it is a day ordained by God. Months back, it would have been impossible to embark on such a trip considering the Bamako Hotel attack which brought this rather former French Colony in West Africa to world attention. I thank God for the relative peace Mali is enjoying now, It is my prayer that God will continue to protect and bless all of you in Mali.

I thank God for the grace and protection to stand before Yorubas and indeed friends of Yorubas who are all gathered here to witness the birth of Oodua Progressive Union in Bamako, Mali. Toady is another history making day in the story of OPU as the launching of the Mali Chapter will be the first to be launched this new year 2016. Oodua Progressive Union    is already firmly established in 63 countries spread across all the continents, we are proud to say that OPU movement is in United States of America, Britain, Republic of Ireland, Europe, South America, North America, Asia, and not forgetting Africa.

The launching of Gambia, Senegal, Togo, Ivory Coast, chapters took place last year, and it is with sense of joy that i welcome Mali into the global scope of Oodua Progressive Union. It is always a pleasure to be in the midst of people who come from far and near, come together in unity because of our common progenitor, ODUDUWA. It is my prayer that this peaceful revolution aimed at uniting Yorubas in diaspora which started in 2011 seeking to create a common platform for Yoruba sons and daughters who are based outside the shores of Nigeria will serve as a template for one common heritage and common identity.

Let me emphasise that Oodua Progressive Union (OPU) is a non-government,non-partisan,and non-religiuos body. OPU was founded on the need to foster unity among Yorubas not minding the environment,culture and location they reside all over the world.It must be noted that the major interest that gave birth to OPU is the desire to unite all the people that have ancestral link to ODUDUWA who is our common progenitor.

It is with complete sense of fulfilment that i stand here to confirm that no ethnic group is so blessed with enormous cultural visibility and acceptance like the Yoruba race. The recent coronation of our Royal father,The Custodian of the Source of Yorubas,the landlord of all the Yorubas,His Imperial Majesy,Oba Enitan Ogunwusi,the Oonirisha,is a case study.The ceremony attracted the world media attention that no royal father commanded in a long while,the attendant publicity which heralded his historic visit to the palace of Alaafin of Oyo and the subsequent visits to other prominent Obas,Government officials and his recent induction as the Chancellor,University of Nigeria Nnsuka are visible attestations that the Yoruba traditional institution has come to stay and will continue to enjoy world wide attention.

The desire of the Oonirisha to unite all our traditional institutions and all Yorubas in Nigeria is a welcome development which the OPU is happy about,it is therefore a further boost to you Nigerians in diaspora to come together under the umbrella of Oodua Progressive Union to chart a common identity based on common heritage.If they are getting it right in Nigeria,you in diaspora have no excuse.

If you trace the history of Mali Empire which is historically referred to as the Manden Kurufaba in West Africa. The popular empire founded by Sundiata Keita which later became renowned for the wealth of its rulers,especially Mansa Musa. The Mali Empire was regarded as the largest in West Africa and profoundly influenced the culture of the region through the spread of language,laws and customs along lands adjacent to the Niger River,as well as other areas consisting of numerous vassal kingdoms and provinces.

I am taking us on this historical journey of the origin and spread of Mali Empire to show us the similarity in scope,expansion, and fame of the Oyo Empire which to me can be considered a rival in spread,organised structure which the Europeans met and even adopted when they came to colonise us. What the old Mali Empire retained today is its rich cultural tradition and language. All over the world Malians are identified  quickly in their dressing,and outward display of their tradition.This is a clarion call to Yorubas all over the world to secure the future and expansion of our race by sticking to educate the coming generations those good cultural,social and moral assets contained in our tradition.

Historical records show that Yorubas in West Africa communities is made up of mainly migrant traders who have been around even before the outbreak of the 2nd world war in the late 30's,some of the traders from Ijebu and Oyo provinces have become rooted in major West African cities on the strength of their successful trade ability. It is therefore my conviction that our race,our future and rating in the global scheme of things will be more elated and structured if we share a common platform,a pool of direction and become more united based on our origin.

Through Oodua Progressive Union,we desire to break both physical and psychological separation that kept our people apart for decades by reawakening and unifying our common link to ODUDUWA.
The OPU movement has come to stay,its spread will continue till all the countries where sons and daughters of ODUDUWA reside is covered.

Distinguished guests,based on our shared history and culture,we stand to benefit a lot if we come united under this common umbrella of Oodua Progressive Union (OPU)

I Welcome Mali to the global map of OPU,I appreciate the efforts of those who made today's launching a reality and i pray that God will reward you all, i wish safe return to our place of abode. I will tell Yorubas in Nigeria of your unique hospitality and even encourage them to come over and have a taste of your warm hospitality.

Thank you for your time and attention. 

National Coordinator, Oodua People's Congress
Chief Promoter,Olokun Festival Foundation
Convener, Oodua Progressive Union.

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