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The Arole Oduduwa & Ooni of Ife, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi has lauded the Sokoto State Governor, Mr. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal for dignifying the traditional institution in the State under the leadership of the Sultan, Alhaji Sa'ad Abubakar.

Ooni Ogunwusi who made this known On Saturday during his courtesy visit to the state governor explained he was there to appreciate the state government for the unprecedented respect always accorded the traditional institution in the state.

"I have come to tell Governor Tambuwa to continue with the good works he is doing in Sokoto and beyond. I want to equally thank the Governor for respecting our culture and tradition and also for his support to the Sokoto Caliphate Council and the Emirate being led by the Sultan. I thank you for respecting us and I pray that God respect you."

In his response, the Governor explained that he was only doing his duty as a responsible subject under the noble traditional institution.

"Baba, you need not thank us for what we are doing for the Sokoto Sultanate Council through His Eminence Sultan, it is our obligation to do it. We here respect our traditional institutions as symbolized by His Eminence the Sultan of Sokoto. So, whatever we do, we consult him."

"Your Imperial Majesty, we are indeed very pleased to receive you here today at the government house in Sokoto for the very first time since your accession to the throne of Oduduwa, we are also happy that the bond between you and His Eminence the Sultan is so strong, only some weeks ago, Sultan was in your palace at Ile-Ife and both of you have been going round this country as the Co-chairmen of National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria(NCTRN) to preach peaceful coexistence among Nigerians"

"Kabiyesi, your visit to Sokoto not only this time around even in the past comes with a lot of value as you represent the culture and tradition of the Yoruba nation. This is the capital of the caliphate, your working together with His Eminence Sultan hand-in- hand for the promotion of peace and stability of this country is gloally acknowledged and very important at this time. We commend you for the good works you are doing for Nigeria..

"Let me Implore our leaders especially traditional leaders not to be daunted by cirtain development of the past. Continue to do what you are doing, God is watching and he'll uphold you. Sometimes we play politics but we must desist from playing politics with our traditional institutions, religion, security".

"These issues are beyond politics, I thereby plead with our religious leaders to keep praying together for the stability of our country. We need your support, counsels for us to to succeed." Tambuwal noted.

The Ooni and his entourage had earlier on Friday arrived Sokoto through the Sultan Abubakar III International Airport where he was received by Sultan of Sokoto from where the both proceeded straight to Argungu by road accompanied by Emir of Keffi, Dr. Shehu Usman Yamusa II, Emir of Nasarawa, Alhaji Ibrahim Usman Jibril, Emir of Nasarawa, Emir of Lere, Alhaji Garba Abubakar Mohammad and Emir of Gombe, Alhaji Abubakar Shehu Abubakar III.
They were received at the border between Sokoto and Kebbi states by the Emir of Argungu, Alhaji Samaila Mera and led to the Emirs palace in Argungu.

Welcoming his guests, Emir of Argungu eulogized Ooni Ogunwusi describing him as a great bridge building leader of Nigeria

We are very honored to have all of you here particularly our leader the Ooni of Ife for the first time coming to this part of the country, the first time I spoke about this festival to you and begged you to be our Royal Father of the Day together with His Eminence the Sultan of Sokoto, you promised you would come, I didn't know you would still remember but Alliamdulilahi you are here with us, wallahi, we can thank you enough." The Emir said.

Ooni responded by urging government to invest more in the tourism sector which he said has the capacity to generate employment for the youth.

"This is one of the major tourism potentials of our country. I grew up in the Southwestern part of this country to know Argungu festival and I am amazed today to see the revitalization of our heritage through this festival. I am particularly impressed with the reinvented rice pyramid.

"If well harnessed , tourism is a huge employment opportunity for our teeming youths as you can see the huge participation of our youths here today.

" I also feel so proud that all the vehicles displayed and given as prizes here today were assembled in Nigeria. Let us always patronize our products and we must uphold our culture if we want to be economically successful as a country which is the most populous black country in the world. " Ooni said

Colourful durbar parade display led by the Emir of Argungu, Alhaji Ismai'ila Mohammed Mera was held on Friday, followed by the Grand finale of the Argungu Fishing Festival on Saturday with thousands of fishermen, equipped with a hand net and large gourd splashed into the stream, scouring the water for the biggest freshwater fish.

The 3-day festival graced by well-esteemed dignitaries from all over Nigeria and internationally had Maiwake Sani from Sokoto as 2nd runner up with 70kg fish and Bala Yahya from Augie, Kebbi State with 75kg of fish to become the 1st runner up while Abubakar Ya'u from Augie in Kebbi came first with 78kg fish.

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