The Chairman of Badagry Local Government, Mr Olusegun Onilude, on Saturday said that the development of the tourism sector was one of the cardinal programmes of his administration.
Onilude stated this during the 2018 Zangbeto Traditional Festival in Ajido Kingdom, Badagry, Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Zangbeto in Ajido land is regarded as the symbol of authority of Ogu people.
The symbol is believed to be a royal emissary between the Aholu and the ancestors.
NAN also reports that Zangbeto is, therefore, an intermediary meant to guide and connect the people to the ancestors through the Aholu.
The chairman said that his administration recognised the economic importance of tourism to the development of Badagry people.
“Badagry is globally recognised as the tourism headquarters of Nigeria in terms of potential.
“I seize this opportunity to call on well-meaning investors, either corporate or private individuals to bring forth ideas for the development of our tourism,’’ he said.
Onilude congratulated the indigenes of Ajido land on the celebration of culture, tradition and heritage as a people.
According to the chairman, a people’s heritage is the link between the past and their future.
“The identity of a people is destroyed when they forget their heritage,’’ he said.
The Aholu of Ajido Kingdom, Oba Saheed Adamson, Topon Toyiaga 1, said that this year’s festival was historic because this was the first time in history when 300 Zangbeto masqueraders were being exhibited.
Adamson called on sons and daughters of Ajido and Badagry, both at home and in diaspora, to utilise opportunities at their disposal in promoting their fatherland.
The traditional ruler commended the state government for the on-going reconstruction of Aradagun-Ajido-Iworo-Epeme road.
He said that this had shown that the government was concerned about the yearning of the people and was ready at all times in assuaging the challenges of the people.
Adamson commended the state government for contributing to the realisation of the festival.
In his remarks, Mr Adeyinka Amosu, the Chairman, Central Planning Committee, said that it had become imperative at a time like this to start borrowing from the foundation of our religious past as laid by our ancestors to link and fortify the future.
Amosu said: “This is imperative, in view of the current youth restiveness, drug and substance abuse, lawlessness and a host of other challenges.
“Somehow, our forefathers had successfully used some formidable institutions to stabilise the society and ensured peaceful living, devoid of rancor.’’
He said that Zangbeto institution in Ogu Land was one of such instruments of administration that worked well in the olden days.
Amosu said that crime was well controlled, saying that peace, love and affection were fostered.
He urged the people that came from different parts of the world including Nigerians to relax and explore the beautiful ambience of Ajido town, the land of peace, culture and tradition.
NAN reports that the festival was marked with different displays and magics by Zangbeto masqueraders.
The indigenes of Ajidoland, foreigners, tourists and well-wishers defied the heavy rainfall to celebrate the festival. (NAN)