Osun Osogbo festival kicked off yesterday amid pomp and celebration as worshipers, devotees, traditional rulers and some government officials trooped out to participate in the traditional cleansing of the City of Osogbo called ‘Iwopopo’ by locals.
Ataoja of Osogbo, Kaabiyesi, Oba Jimoh, Oyetunji (Olaonipekun Larooye II) led the crowd in a march through designated routes in the symbolic cleansing of the city, which marked the official commencement of the 2021 edition of the annual sacrifice in celebration of the Osun River goddess.
The occasion, which witnessed drumming, singing and dancing brought the city of Osogbo to a halt for hours as residents trooped out in obeisance celebrating the flag-off of the biggest annual religious festival among the Yoruba. After the march, different age and social groups, communities and title chiefs paid homage to the king who was seated in the centre of the town.
Other key activities to mark this year’s Osun Osogbo Festival include the lighting of the 500-year-old 16-point lamp called ‘Ina Olojumerindinlogun’ slated for Thursday, August 5, also ‘Iboriade’, a unique assemblage and display of the crowns of past Ataojas of Osogbo for blessings, which will come up on August 9.
The grand finale comes up on Friday August 13, and would be live streamed for diaspora devotees and worshippers. It would be the sacrificial offering by “Arugba” at the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove designated as UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.