The Ooni of Ife and superstar musician have joined hands to promote peace across Nigeria and abroad.
The project, an initiative of Cally Ikpe, Nigerian Music Video Awards (NMVA) organiser, is dubbed ‘Violence free world’.
The monarch and the musician are not the only ones involved in the project. Some of the others involved are, comedian, Gbenga Adeyinka; former Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, and Catholic Bishop, Father Mathew Kukah.
2face Idibia and and Gbenga Adeyinka were decorated by Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi as ambassadors for the project at an event held at the palace on Thursday, September 29, 2016.
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Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi said of the project, “My reign is all about peace, and I’m passionate about it. Peace is the bedrock of our existence; without harmony, we can’t live well. If there is uprising, even our leaders can’t handle it. We have seen it happen in other parts of the world, and we don’t pray for it here.”
He continued, "I am very keen about the youths because they’re the ones that are usually used to perpetrate violence; you can’t see kids or elderly people bearing arms. As far as this throne is concerned, I will continue to engage the youths, not just in Ile-Ife and Nigeria alone, but all over the world, to empower them and ensure a violence-free world.”
The Oba also expressed interest in working closely with Nigerian artists in the future. He said to 2Face, “I want us to work closely together. You will give me a list of Nigerian musicians, and I will write letters to them asking for their support. I want you all to record a song that will bear a message of peace. All the acts in this country will be a part of this record, and the proceeds will be used for charitable causes. None of you will benefit from the profits though, it will solely be used to help the less-privileged.”
Idibia on the other hand, commended the king, “It is very rare to see a royalty engaging in a project like this. Anybody that knows me will be aware that I’m all about peace and I don’t joke with it. Violence affects everybody, but people tend to overlook or downplay it at times. I assure the Ooni that I’m 2000 percent in support of this.”
Cally Ikpe spoke on the inspiration behind the project. “I am very passionate about a violence-free world, I thought about the people I can partner with, and the Ooni came to mind because his antecedents have shown he is a man of peace. When I discussed the idea with him, he embraced it wholeheartedly and endorsed it as his own. It’s not possible for man to partner with God, and since the Ooni is a deity, it means this is his project, and I’m only a part of it.”