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Festival: Ondo Governor Rescinds The Monarch’s Directive To Close The Market

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The Ondo State Government on Thursday reversed the order of the Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi of market closing over a traditional festival celebration.
Oba Aladelusi, through his media aide, had earlier ordered the closure of markets to observe the annual Aheregbe Festival coming up on Friday but the government frowned at the order, saying the monarch had infringed the fundamental human rights of the residents of the community.
The state Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mrs Bamidele Ademola-Olateju, in a statement issued on Thursday evening said, the decision of the government was reached at the state Executive Council meeting.
According to the statement, the commissioner said the monarch did not get the approval of the acting governor before giving out the order of market closure.
The statement read, “On August 24, 2022, one of the decisions made by the Executive Council was that; there shall be no closure of markets in any part of the state without the approval of the acting governor.
“The statement credited to Mr. Michael Adeyeye, the Press Secretary of His Majesty, the Deji of Akure constitutes a clear violation of an existing order of the government, and an abridgement the right of Akure residents to the pursuance of their livelihood.
“The public should note that even if an approval was sought, such closure would have been limited to Ọjà Ọba (Oba’s Market) in Akure.
“We urge our respected Royal father, His Majesty, the Deji of Akure to respect the government decision and refrain from any action that can inconvenience, and, or inflict economic pain to Akure inhabitants. We also ask that the cordial relationship between the revered stool of the Deji not be drawn into open confrontation with the government.”
The statement urged the Akure residents to go about their normal business on Friday and beyond, in pursuance of their freedoms.
“No market or shop shall be closed by anyone either by coercion or threat of force before, during or after Aheregbe Festival. Whoever flies in the face of this directive will draw the ire of the government. The Government of Ondo State asks that; everyone should be law abiding and move about freely in the pursuit of happiness,” the statement submitted.
The Deji, in a statement issued by his Chiefs Press Secretary, Mr Michael Adeyeye on Thursday, ordered for closure of market in the community to observe the annual Aheregbe Festival coming up on Friday.
The statement read , “The Palace of the Deji and Paramount Ruler of Akure Kingdom wishes to notify the residents of Akure and its environ that all Markets and Shops in Akure will be shut on Friday 25th August, 2023
“The closure became necessary as part of the requirement in observing the age long tradition of the annual Aheregbe Festival. It is important to emphasize that there shall be no trading or opening of shops under any guise during the festival.
“Residents, market women and shop owners are kindly enjoined to comply with this directive.”
However, the statement exempted pharmacy shops and patent medicine stores from the closure of their shops during the festival.
“Moreover, the festival will not in any way restrict both human and vehicular movement,” the statement submitted.

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