August 14th, 2012
Only last week I had a mild attack which
nearly cost me my life. I had been running about trying to
make some of our leaders understand that cultural revival
can perform the same magic that the late Chief Obafemi
Awolowo performed when he industrialized and propelled the
then Western Region to the most envious position in the
history of the country.
I am with this article calling on our leaders to please
listen to the voice of the people. We can not continue to
promise our people dividends of democracy without providing
jobs. There are jobs which require little government
It is on record South West Nigeria has probably the largest
cultural and historical monuments in Africa. The discovered
or yet to be discovered historical monuments that have
generated a lot of the myths and legends of Osun, Ondo,
Ekiti, Oyo, Ogun, Edo and Benin are enough tourism
destinations to generate foreign exchange more than whatever
agriculture policies we put in place. It is a business you
do not need to wait for growing time.
That is why It has become necessary for me to explain the
need for the Bilikisu/Queen of Sheba workshop billed to take
place on the 27th and 28th of August 2012 even as I strain
myself to type this article..
For over 1000 years the story that the occupant of a grave
site in Oke Eri in Ijebuland could be the legendary Queen of
Sheba in the Bible has been told. Not only have the elderly
occupants of the land confirmed that they heard the story
from their fathers, there are historical and traditional
dating that suggest this could be true. Unfortunately
traditional taboos which made Africa the “Dark Continent” in
those days still tend to persist even today. If this story
is true think of the financial and scientific returns this
would bring to the people of Ijebuland.
For example, our fathers tend to guard information about the
community as if it a sole preserve of their family. Very
often they die without passing the knowledge to their
The aim of the workshop is to create a forum where we can
ask questions and tell what we know about the Bilikisu
Sungbo story so as to put to rest some of the speculations
that has made a possible treasure lands, ghost lands.
Man would never have dared to travel to the moon if he had
believed in the taboo that he would be disturbing heavenly
spirits. Science teaches us to ask questions and find
solutions. There is need to bring civilization to the
African continent by demystifying these taboos which still
make it difficult for information to be obtained from our
The workshop is geared towards collating valuable
information on the subject and obtaining contributions on
how to encourage investment in tourism destinations in
There is need to embrace Cultural Revolution now because
this will encourage our youths to go back to their
destinations to look after them. We must realize that
functional tourism destinations are like farm settlements
because they create jobs for the community and guarantee
security and community friendliness.
You may have observed that the creation of Local Governments
in Nigeria has not brought development to communities
because there are no industries or traditional business
developed in these communities. Some tourism destinations in
the world do not need five star hotels, electricity and all.
What they need is hospitality and new living experience.
Traditional taboos have created bottle necks in every aspect
of our life making foreign values take preference.
Chief Olufemi Robinson
Author of the Movie “Bilikisu”