The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, has landed in the United States of America, where he will be hosted to a grand reception by Ile-Ife indigenes living in the country on Saturday.
The Ooni was on Thursday received at the J. F. Kennedy Airport, New York, by leaders of Ife indigenes and other Nigerians.
The union, known as Ife Ooye North America, will be hosting the monarch at the Ukraine Center in the city of Somerset, New Jersey. The reception will be attended by local governmental officials including mayors and legislators.
There are other events lined up for the Ooni’s visit:
Sunday, June 12
The Ooni will be the Special Guest of Honor at the prestigious Odunde festival. ODUNDE, created in 1975 by Lois Fernandez and Ruth Arthur, is a festival that attracts attendance of about 500,000 people annually. The festival, whose concept originates from the Yoruba people of Nigeria, West Africa, celebrates the coming of another year for African Americans and Africanized people around the world, and is the largest African American street festivals held in the country.
Monday, June 13
The Amarachi Restaurant in New York will hold a reception honoring Ooni Ogunwusi. There, he would receive the state senator Kevin Parker and the Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams who have secured NYC proclamation of Monday June 13, 2016 as Yoruba day in honour of the visiting monarch.
The Museum of the Contemporary African Diaspora Arts (MoCADA) will receive the monarch in a private reception as well as public forum session on the same day. Brooklyn Borough President and New York City Public Advocate, Leticia James are expected at the event.
Visit to the White House
The monarch will then move to the Mid-west and other parts of the country to attend economic and leadership summits before being received by President Barack Obama through The White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
The Chairman of the Grand Reception Planning Committee and one of the leaders of Ife Ooye North America group, Chief Olubunmi Awopileda, in a statement, said:
“All Ife natives in the US are excited and energized for this epochal occasion. It will be an occasion to showcase our very rich culture with our king as the symbol”
The Ife Ooye North America is a union of about 3,000 Ife indigenes in America
Other details of the Ooni’s tour of America are as follows:
June 10, 2016
Press Conference & Global Iamness Lioness Economic & Empowerment Summit “Unleashing Your Roar 2016”, at the UN, New York
June 11, 2016
Ooni’s Grand Reception, Ukrainian Cultural Center, New Jersey
June 12, 2016
Odunde Festival, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
June 13, 2016
Museum of Contemporary African Diasporian Art (MoCADA), New York
June 15, 2016
Symposium at Howard University, Washington, DC
June 16-18, 2016
Oduduwa Economic Development/Transformation Leadership Summit 2016 & Awards Dinner, Gaylord Hotels, National Harbor, Maryland
June 21-22, 2016
State Department & White House Briefing & Reception
June 23, 2016
Forums & Reception US Congress Captol Hill
June 24, 2016
Peace Ambassador Awards Dinner at the Howard University, Washington, DC
where over 500 members of the association will gather.
The event will provide an opportunity for the monarch to meet his subjects one-on-one and interact with them on how to further develop Ile-Ife.
Ooni is in the USA on official tour. He will also visit the
Oba Ogunwusi’s visit comes against the backdrop of his widely commended efforts to promote peace and love among Yoruba and leaders of various ethnic groups in Nigeria. The visit is also intended to promote the economic well-being of the people of his immediate community in particular to which he has been committed since he ascended the throne.