THE Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland and Convener of Oodua Progressive Union, OPU, Iba Gani Adams, has formally launched the OPU Canada.
The event which was held in Toronto, Canada, had in attendance Nigerians, who are core professionals in the country.
Notable personalities present at the launch were the Zaki of Arigidi Akoko, Oba Yisa Olanipekun; the Owa of Ogbagi Kingdom of Ondo State, Oba Adetona Victor, and Head of Chancery and the representative of the Canadian Ambassador, Mrs Joy Akinmoladun.Adams
In his remarks, Aare Adams said: “Efforts should be made to project the country positively to the world. We need to tell the Nigerian story to the rest of the world. And in doing this, we all have a role to play in making this dream a reality.
‘’The journey to inaugurate the first chapter of the Oodua Progressive Union, OPU, began in Britain in 2011; beginning with India in November 2012. That was how it all began seven years ago, with South Africa being our last port of call. Today, we are in Canada, one of the most successful countries in the world. The success displayed by Canada did not come so cheap; it is all about the enduring legacies of the founding fathers since its independence in July 1867,” while explaining how OPU started.
‘’Canada is today the toast of many travellers because of the huge transformation in the country. What we see today in Canada is not accidental, it was a sacrifice and calculated effort of the leaders, who believed strongly in changing the fortunes and narratives of the country positively. It was based on the fulfilment of the social contract between the leaders and the followers.”
’It is with great honour and delight that I welcome you all to the inaugural ceremony of the Canada chapter of the Oodua Progressive Union (OPU). Today’s event is a fulfillment of the dream to expand the frontiers of our group to Canada and the rest of the world”, Adams said while delivering his inaugural speech.
Earlier in her welcome address, the OPU Canada Coordinator, Mr Funmi Olumade stated that having OPU Canada was an opportunity to converge Yoruba sons and daughters to promote the Yoruba culture, which she posited must not go into extinction.
She said: “The launching of the Oodua Progressives Union (OPU Canada) is a platform for Yorubas in Diaspora to support one another, promote our cultural heritage in diaspora. Also give back to Southwestern Nigeria in form of human resources, as well as enhance effective transfer of technology from Canada to Nigeria while we keep our cultural heritage alive in Canada through engagement of Yoruba Youths in Canada, collaborating with other socio-cultural Associations as well as other Canadian bodies.”