Osun Committee on Culture and Tourism disclosed that the 2021 Osun festival billed for August will hold despite COVID-19, pollution of the river.
Mr Adetoyi Michael Adeyinka, Chairman of the Committee, announced during an unscheduled visit to the Osun Grove by the Committees on Environment, Sanitation, Culture and Tourism of the state.
He said “the ongoing gold mining activities will in no way affect the traditional heritage of Osun and it will not also affect the annual Osun festival.
“I am certain that before the festival kicks off, we will be witnessing tremendous improvements and the environment will have been taken care of.”
The Chairman explained that both committees were working together to ensure everything is in good shape before the latter part of the year.
Adeyinka maintained that gold mining activities have grossly polluted the waterway and there was a need for legislation to urgently ensure that the government’s intention will not be truncated.
“Osun State House of Assembly has been informed and that is the reason for this oversight visit to see things for ourselves so that we will know which direction to come from in the proposed legislation.
“I am sure with this, there will be controls in such a manner that the objectives of government and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism will be achieved.”
Corroborating, the Chairman of the House Committee on Environment and Sanitation, Gbenga Ogundipe said since it has been established that the pollution and colour change observed in the river is directly linked to mining activities, more action would be put into the process of coming up with legislation.
He explained that the Environment and Sanitation Commissioner has assured them that steps have already been taken and within a short time, positive results would be observed.
Hon. Taofeek Badamosi, representing Osogbo constituency in the State House of Assembly, also said the Ataoja of Osogbo land expressed worries over the increasing pollution of the River and has mandated him to liaise with both House Committees.
Badamosi noted that he has been assured that something will be done to resolve the river pollution before August.