The Osun State First Lady, Alhaja Kafayat Oyetola on Thursday, July 8, 2021 called for Once-a-Week wearing of ADIRE fabric by all Cabinet Member of the Osun State Government in order to promote and market Osun cultural heritage to boost the economy of the state.
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She made this known while declaring a 3-day-Fashion Week of the Osun State organized by the State Ministry of Culture and Tourism in collaboration with the United States Musty Great Development and Alexandria Jones Cultures.
The initiative was to resuscitate the people’s consciousness towards socio-cultural revival.
Declaring the Week open at the De-Destinguished Event Centre, Osogbo, Mrs. Oyetola described the initiative as a round peg in a round hole, noting that the concept was coming at a time the nation had resolved to diversify its economy for sustainability.
Mrs. Oyetola who commended the initiative, particularly the gesture to reposition AdireTtextile Industry, said it was heart warming to know that the State had begun to leverage on indigenous resources to grow her revenue base and boost the economy of the State.
“The reality of today demands that we begin to tap into indigenous resources to raise the necessary funds for development. There is no better source than the renewable fund that our Culture and Tourism resources promise.
“Fashion is a critical component of the Tourism Industry and I commend you for this Week.
“Globally, the Fashion industry employs over 300 million people with large number of them in the poorest countries.
Indeed, Osun cannot continue to treat the fashion industry, especially, the Adire subsector as a marginal field entity.
“Fashion sustains large number of families in the State. The industry is part of the creative industry that makes Osun known in the culture and arts world.
“Although, the bulk of productions chain has been in cloth with very small percentage of engagement in accessories, this kind of formal recognition and attention will assist in growing the diverse usages. It will also help in improving the quality of the products.
“Therefore, this event will go a long way in bringing the necessary awareness to the wonderful Adire products being made in the State. It is a right step to attract good market to the Adire subsector of the Fashion Industry,” She said.
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Mrs. Oyetola advocated the need for the members of the State Executive Council to adopt a policy which would make Adire attire a must-wear, at least one day in a week, in the various offices of government just as she also moved a motion to consider the idea of having a common market dedicated strictly to the sale of Adire and ally products.
The First Lady noted that the gesture would further enhance the industry and serve as a great economic motivation for product improvement as the result would be a great positive boost to the living standard of the entrepreneurs.
In his welcome address, the Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Dr. Adebisi Obawale, said the initiative has been designed to provide employment opportunities for the teeming youths and job seekers in the State.
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According to him, about 120 young fashion models would be retrained to broaden their skills after which some of them would be taken abroad to expand the scope of their businesses for further development.
“We launched our Master Plan and part of it is to promote the consciousness as regards indigenous fabrics popularly known as “Adire”. Osun is particularly suitable for this purpose due to its 19th century textile tradition and many unique tourist attraction sites.
“Today, we are celebrating International Fashion Week. Though it is a 3-day programme, it starts today and we are going to have the grand finale in a grand style on the last day which is Saturday, July 10, 2021.
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This is a collaboration with the State Government through the Ministry of Culture and Tourism to form a synergy that will enhance the socio-cultural development of the State.
“We have here today, professionals across sectors. This is to promote young designers, fashion models, photographers, content creators and creative artists so as to enable them to meet the icons of world fashion design and introduce them to the world of business.
“Adire Osun Scheme has three components: production, promotion and marketing. To achieve this, we have partnered our people who have excelled in this regard to link us to market the products across the globe most importantly in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Russia and Ghana.
” So, the purpose of this is to ensure that the stakeholders come together and take a marketing channel for the products. This is to assist passionate individuals who desire a career in modelling and fashion industry.
“As we can see, our State stands to gain a lot from this partnership as the initiative has the capacity to promote entrepreneurship, create markets for existing entrepreneurs in the new areas and help to groom a new set of youths to be producers and marketers.
“We have committed ourselves to this and it will be a continuous process to ensure that it is sustained,” he added.
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Speaker Osun House of Assembly, Hon. Timothy Owoeye, applauded the Administration of Governor Oyetola for giving the sector a prime and befitting position in the scheme of things.
Owoeye who was represented by the Chairman House Committee on Culture and Tourism, Hon. Adetoyi Michael Adeyinka, appraised the boundless potential embedded in the sector and urged the people to brace up to their responsibility and join hands with government to promote their heritage.
In their separate royal remarks, the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, Alayemore of Ido-Osun, Oba Adedapo Aderemi and Eburu of Iba, Oba Adekunle Okunoye, harped on the need for the black race, particularly Yoruba, to go back to the drawing board and take their position as the best cultured and values-inclined nation.
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Alaafin who was represented by her daughter, Princess Folashade Adeyemi,
urged parents and guardians to inculcate the values and virtues of their heritage in their children and wards.
According to them, culture is life and life is about culture, hence the need for the people to embrace their heritage, cherish it and take its maximum advantage for their personal and collective growth and development.
Similarly, some of the culture icons in attendance like Chief Jimoh Buraimon and Eesa of Iragbiji, Chief Muraina Oyelami, lamented the speedy way and manner in which the African culture has been going into extinction just as they advocated the need for Yoruba culture renaissance.
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