The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, on Sunday, led members of the state Executive Council to the special thanksgiving service to mark the successful completion of Ugie Ododua and Ugie Ivie ceremonies celebrated by the Omo N’Oba N’Edo Ukuakpolokpolo, Oba Ewuare II, the Oba of Benin.
The governor and his Exco members joined prominent Palace Chiefs, Enigie, Edionwere, market women, youths and members of the public at the thanksgiving service at the Holy Aruosa Cathedral, along Akpakpava Road, in Benin City.
Members of the State Executive Council present at the service include Secretary to the State Government, Osarodion Ogie, Esq.; Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, Commissioner for Arts, Culture and Diaspora Affairs, Hon. Osazee Osemwegie-Ero, among others.
Addressing journalists, Governor Obaseki said, “Today is a day of thanksgiving and we have every reason to thank God for giving us the Oba of Benin. We just finished the celebration of a special event and we are here to thank God for the life of our Oba, his reign and the peace we have enjoyed so far.”
The governor expressed appreciation to Oba Ewuare II for assisting the Edo people in repositioning and rejuvenating the rich Edo culture to attract global appeal, noting, “Benin has a lot to sell to the world in terms of its rich cultural heritage. Holy Aruosa is one of the oldest churches in Africa and has strong historical significance. We have culture and traditions that span several centuries and we thank God for our monarch who is helping in resuscitating our culture for global consumption.”
The Ohen-Osa of Holy Aruosa Cathedral, Harrison Okao, in a sermon delivered in Edo language, cautioned youths against engaging in kidnapping, rituals and other social vices.
The Ohen-Osa also enjoined politicians to support the Oba of Benin in attracting development to Edo State. The high point of the service was paying of homage to the Oba by his chiefs, princes, princesses, Enigie and other groups as well as cultural display by a group of children.