The Olojo Festival is one of the most celebrated festivals amongst the Yorubas. In summary, it is a Festival that celebrates the dawn of creation.
According to Yoruba myth, Ife is the sit of creation. Hence, life began in Ife and spread to the other parts of the world.
Thusly, the Olojo Festival is a celebration of this dawn of creation. It is a celebration once every year and it is for seven days.
Beyond the festivities and merrymaking, the Olojo is a spiritual journey. Therefore a significant part of the festival is that the Ooni of Ife, goes into seclusion for 7days. In that time he will be away from his people, as he performs the necessary rituals and sacrifices.
After seven days has elapsed, the Ooni will wear the ancient crown of his ancestors, called the Ade Arè crown.
Furthermore, Yoruba culture says the ancient Ade Arè crown originally belonged to Oduduwa, the father of the Yorubas. Therefore the Ooni of Ife, Oonirisa Adeyeye Enitan Babatunde Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, is the only man who wears the Ade Arè crown.
The Ooni of Ife, as a regent of Oduduwa, wears the ancient sacred crown, once a year.
After his imperial majesty comes out of seclusion, having donned the sacred crown, Yoruba belief says none must look him in the eye. Consequently, the ancient Ade Arè crown is heavily beaded.
With the burdensome crown on his head, the Ooni of Ife, leads a procession to the Okemogun Shrine. In the Okemogun Shrine, the Ooni as the royal father of the Yoruba race, prays to Ogun, the god of Thunder, for Yorubas far and wide.
Several people, from all over the world, were in Ile Ife to celebrate the Olojo festival. Foreigners and Nigerians in diaspora also took part in this exclusive event.
The theme of Olojo festival 2018, is ‘ One Yoruba, One Source, One Festival’.