This is a topic very dear to my heart because the Yoruba race is yet to recover from the huge assault dealt on it by the combined forces of transatlantic and transcontinental slave trade, the British colonisation, the invasion of Islam and Christianity, the mental colonisation of our cherished world view, the forced amalgamation and the dysfuntionality of the Nigerian contraption.
We also have as a quick fall-out of the above, the serious encroachment of our rich traditions, cultures and cultural values, the loss of our history, the near-loss of our language, the obvious loss of our identity, the aping of eccentric values of the United State of America, arrant inferiority complex, and loss of both our political and hitherto buoyant economic structures.
But let us begin by exploring what in fact constitutes a people’s culture. This will be the first leg of our discourse today. Thereafter, we shall examine our identity and follow it up with the role culture and identity play in a society’s emancipation. We will then cap it up with the erosion of cherished values which the Yoruba have suffered as a race and a clarion call to awaken ourselves and reposition for survival, emancipation and permanent preservation. In all of these, I am going to quote profusely from scholars and leading authorities whose researches, thoughts and opinions have guided our own efforts in this submission.
Now, to culture.
Culture (Latin: cultura, lit. “Cultivation”)  is a term that has many different inter-related meanings. For example, in 1952, Alfred Kroeber and Clyde Kluckhohn compiled a list of 164 definitions of “culture” in Culture: A Critical Review of Concepts and Definitions. However, the word “culture” is most commonly used in three basic senses:
Excellence of taste in the fine arts and humanities, also known as high culture
An integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief, and behaviour that depends upon the capacity for symbolic thought and social learning
The set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices that characterizes an institution, organization, or group
In German German Romanticism
the quality in a person or society that arises from a concern for what is regarded as excellent in arts, letters, manners, scholarly pursuits, etc.
that which is excellent in the arts, manners, etc.
a particular form or stage of civilization, as that of a certain nation or period: Greek culture.
development or improvement of the mind by education or training.
the behaviours and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group: the youth culture; the drug culture
a : the integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief, and behaviour that depends upon the capacity for learning and transmitting knowledge to succeeding generations b : the customary beliefs, social forms, and material traits of a racial, religious, or social group; also : the characteristic features of everyday existence (as diversions or a way of life} shared by people in a place or time
What is Culture?
The word culture has many different meanings. For some it refers to an appreciation of good literature, music, art, and food. For a biologist, it is likely to be a colony of bacteria or other microorganisms growing in a nutrient medium in a laboratory Petri dish. However, for anthropologists and other behavioral scientists, culture is the full range of learned human behavior patterns. The term was first used in this way by the pioneer English Anthropologist Edward B. Tylor in his book, Primitive Culture, published in 1871. Tylor said that culture is “that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, law, morals, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society.” Of course, it is not limited to men. Women possess and create it as well. Since Tylor’s time, the concept of culture has become the central focus of anthropology.
Culture is a powerful human tool for survival, but it is a fragile phenomenon. It is constantly changing and easily lost because it exists only in our minds. Our written languages, governments, buildings, and other man-made things are merely the products of culture. They are not culture in themselves. For this reason, archaeologists can not dig up culture directly in their excavations. The broken pots and other artifacts of ancient people that they uncover are only material remains that reflect cultural patterns–they are things that were made and used through cultural knowledge and skills.
Layers of Culture
There are very likely three layers or levels of culture that are part of your learned behaviour patterns and perceptions. Most obviously is the body of cultural traditions that distinguish your specific society. When people speak of Italian, Samoan, or Japanese culture, they are referring to the shared language, traditions, and beliefs that set each of these peoples apart from others. In most cases, those who share your culture do so because they acquired it as they were raised by parents and other family members who have it.
The second layer of culture that may be part of your identity is a subculture In complex, diverse societies in which people have come from many different parts of the world, they often retain much of their original cultural traditions. As a result, they are likely to be part of an identifiable subculture in their new society. The shared cultural traits of subcultures set them apart from the rest of their society. Examples of easily identifiable subcultures in the United States include ethnic groups such as Vietnamese Americans, African Americans, and Mexican Americans. Members of each of these subcultures share a common identity, food tradition, dialect or language, and other cultural traits that come from their common ancestral background and experience. As the cultural differences between members of a subculture and the dominant national culture blur and eventually disappear, the subculture ceases to exist except as a group of people who claim a common ancestry. That is generally the case with German Americans and Irish Americans in the United States today. Most of them identify themselves as Americans first. They also see themselves as being part of the cultural mainstream of the nation.
These Cuban American women in Miami, Florida have a shared subculture identity that is reinforced through their language, food, and other traditions
The third layer of culture consists of cultural universals. These are learned behavior patterns that are shared by all of humanity collectively. No matter where people live in the world, they share these universal traits. Examples of such “human cultural” traits include:
communicating with a verbal language consisting of a limited set of sounds and grammatical rules for constructing sentences
using age and gender to classify people (e.g., teenager, senior citizen, woman, man)
classifying people based on marriage and descent relationships and having kinship terms to refer to them (e.g., wife, mother, uncle, cousin)
raising children in some sort of family setting
having a sexual division of labour (e.g., men’s work versus women’s work)
having a concept of privacy
having rules to regulate sexual behaviour
distinguishing between good and bad behaviour
having some sort of body ornamentation
making jokes and playing games
having some sort of leadership roles for the implementation of community decisions
While all cultures have these and possibly many other universal traits, different cultures have developed their own specific ways of carrying out or expressing them. For instance, people in deaf subcultures frequently use their hands to communicate with sign language instead of verbal language. However, sign languages have grammatical rules just as verbal ones do.
Is Culture Limited to Humans?
Non-human culture? This orangutan mother is using a specially prepared stick to “fish out” food from a crevice. She learned this skill and is now teaching it to her child who is hanging on her shoulder and intently watching.
There is a difference of opinion in the behavioral sciences about whether or not we are the only animal that creates and uses culture. The answer to this question depends on how narrow culture is defined. If it is used broadly to refer to a complex of learned behavior patterns, then it is clear that we are not alone in creating and using culture. Many other animal species teach their young what they themselves learned in order to survive. This is especially true of the chimpanzees and other relatively intelligent apes and monkeys. Wild chimpanzee mothers typically teach their children about several hundred food and medicinal plants. Their children also have to learn about the dominance hierarchy and the social rules within their communities. As males become teenagers, they acquire hunting skills from adults. Females have to learn how to nurse and care for their babies. Chimpanzees even have to learn such basic skills as how to perform sexual intercourse. This knowledge is not hardwired into their brains at birth. They are all learned patterns of behaviour just as they are for humans.
Let us now examine the identity of the Yoruba person. What are the traditions that sharpened the Yoruba identity? What are the values that threw up their culture? Or in another way, what cultures have combined to shape up their values?
We may spend a whole day to itemise the salient structures that constitute the Yoruba plethora of cultures and traditions. But the most prominent are the Yoruba political structure, the social fabric, the sociology of the race, especially in areas relating to love, marriage, inheritance, in-laws, respect for elders, and unmatched love for neighbours and every body a Yoruba person has contact with. The communalism in labour matters, and the Esusu, a Yoruba co-operative banking system are some of the cultural tenets that define the Yoruba.
The Yoruba identity is summarised in the age long concept of OMOLUWABI. Omoluwabi is quintessential Yoruba. Omoluwabi is not lazy. Omoluwabi cherishes industry and he gets respected through hardwork and the accomplishments hardwork brings his way.
Omoluwabi is ever truthful. An Omluwabi will NEVER tell lies under any circumstance. Omoluwabi is bold and courageous. And when he is on the battlefield, he will defend his rights with his blood if need be. But he is not foolhardy. Moja-mosa ni Akin ogun!
An Omoluwabi will not steal, because he hates anything that will bring shame to his family or to himself. To the Yoruba man, Iku ya j’esin! Death is preferable to disgrace!
The sum total of Yoruba philosophy is Iwa l’ewa. Character is beauty. And to the Yoruba, Your attitude determines your altitude!
The Yoruba are very philosophical, and hence most of their day-to-day conversations are laden with proverbs and rich idioms.
E wo oju obe k’e mu’yan! Iyan is work, obe is character!
But the richness of our culture, tradition, wisdom, witticism and varied expressions lie in our language. Take away a man’s language, hiw entire being is rendered postrate. There is therefore a crying need to restore our language to its historic dignity and pride of place.
One of the dominant features of Yoruba culture and of Yoruba identity is the institution of Punishment and Reward Systems. And because punishment is severe, crime in a pure Yoruba state is almost unknown. Stealing is punished with ostracisation, banishment and even death. And this is in addition to public disgrace and humiliation that will be heaped on the culprit. Adultery is very rare. And a man who tries it stands the risk of death through Magun!
Reward systems include a generous chieftaincy title by the Monarch, admission into high sacred institutions, and the person may be made a Cousellor in the community.
Thus the Yoruba identity is found in his personal pride and dignity, willingness to work and cooperate with others in the community to advance communal good and general uprightness that is uncommon to many other races.
A Yoruba would leave his wares and goods by the road side, and purchasers would pick items and leave whatever is the item of money for the owner of the goods to collect in the evening!
It is pertinent to mention here the most cherished world view of the Yoruba. Money which is worshipped by many cultures occupies bottom position in the Yoruba scale of Value system. Wisdom, Knowledge and Intelligence known collectively as Ogbon, Imo Oye top the scale to be followed closely by Valour. Integrity comes third while Industry comes fourth. It is after these four attributes would have taken their seats on the high table would the man with money and material wealth be considered for the last seat. The first four are embraced by the Man of Character!
It is this concept of Omoluwabi coupled with the cherished value system of the Yoruba that gave them the prosperity advancement and civilization in the early period of their evolution, and still make them one of the most studied and engaging races on planet earth.
We may now examine the damage which erosion has done to the Yoruba culture and their identity and in doing so examine in what areas this erosion has done the most debilitating damage. Let us look at religion. This is so because religion is the second most vital component of culture apart from language. Religion is actually a way of life. It is difficult to differentiate between an Arab and Islam or between a Jew and Judaism.
Please permit me to quote from my book Theatre on Wheels  on the subject of Yoruba religion.
Religion of the Yoruba
The Yoruba believe in one Supreme Being variously called Olorun ["the Owner of Heaven" or the Lord who dwells in Heaven], Odumare or Olodumare [ " the Owner of destinies"], Oluwa, [ "the Owner of Us"] and who is believed to dwell in heaven. Olorun is the Creator of the Universe and all that dwell therein. All prayers are directed at Him or Her. The Yoruba Olorun is not gendered. Olodumare, the Adiitu, the Inscrutable; limitless, timeless, ubiquitous, and genderless.
Subordinate to the Supreme Being are a number of deities [some say 401] who are held in an elaborate hierarchical order, and to whom are attached special duties and functions. Each has attendant priests and followers. Except for Olorun, the deities are believed to have lived on earth, but instead of dying they became gods, or after their death were deified by their people, in the same manner founders of some other major religions were deified by their followers.
The most important of these Divinities is Orisa Nla,[the great Divinity] or Obatala [the "Immaculate King" because of his legendary association with white colours] who is believed to be the god who creates the human form and is believed to be a close Assistant to Olorun. He is actually an Archangel in the Yoruba pantheon.
Next to him is Orunmila, otherwise known as Agbonniregun, who is the god of Divination. He is the all-wise Counsellor of Obatala and a spiritual link to Olodumare. His is the Ifa Oracle that must be consulted through the Babalawo [Ifa Priest] before a Yoruba man embarks on any venture whatsoever..
Next in the pantheon is Esu Elegbara, believed to be youngest and cleverest of the three deities so far mentioned. He is the divine Messenger who delivers sacrifices prescribed by the Ifa priest to other gods. He is a trickster who delights in provoking troubles, but he serves the lesser deities by causing trouble for human beings who offend the code of conduct as given by the Supreme Being and interpreted by His/Her Divinities. Esu is not the equivalent of the Christian Satan or the Muslim Shaetan. The nearest Western equivalent to him is Mercury, messenger of gods in the classical pantheon, or the modern Chief Whip in a parliamentary democracy whose duty is to maintain discipline and curb individual excesses. Let me quickly emphasise here that there is a world of difference between the Yoruba Olorun, the Supreme Being, Who is genderless and does not possess a feminine and the Judaic God and the Arab Allah.,
Next in the hierarchy is Ogun, the god of iron, metals and war. He is the patron god of hunters, warriors, blacksmiths, barbers, surgeons [ one of his praise names is Onikola-the symbolic meaning of which is surgeon].He is today the most widely worshipped among all the Yoruba gods, and even given official recognition in the Western-type courts, as non-Muslims and non-Christians are asked to swear by Ogun for affidavits and in court proceedings.
Another powerful god is Sango, the god of thunder and lightning. He is the deified third King of Oyo, and historically the son of Oranmiyan by his wife Yemoja.
Although Oduduwa is the most important Deity in Ile Ife, the recognition accorded him by all the Yoruba as the prime ancestor, spiritual head and imperial Monarch makes his worship of less universal importance. Although, his name may be used in prayer or invoked in times of extreme stress, he is not worshipped as Obatala, or Orunmila, or Ogun, or Sango is.
Other important deities whose shrines are found in most parts of Yorubaland include Sonponno, the god of smallpox, Orisa Oko, the god of agriculture, and Oranyan who has sizeable worshippers in Ife and Oyo.
Apart from these universal Deities there are lesser spirits who are nonetheless important to the individuals and localities that embrace their worship. These are gods and goddesses associated with physical or physiological phenomena, such as hills, rivers, the ocean, seas and lagoons, rocks, and the human head. There are also cults which may have derived their existence from the traditional political structure since in the ancient times spiritual and secular matters were merged in one cult hero- the head of the community. Such cults include the Oro, the Egungun, and the Ogboni. Thus we have Yemoja, the goddess of Ogun River, Oya, the goddess of River Niger, and Osun, the goddess of the river of Osun and of fertility. Kori or Orisa Oko is also known as god of the youths. Olumo rock in Abeokuta and Oke-Ibadan in Ibadan are among several physical structures which provided protection for early settlers in the time of the ferocious intra-ethnic wars, and which till today are worshipped by some indigenes.
A person’s head is also worshipped in the manner the physical structures that were once crucial [and perhaps are still crucial] to a people’s survival are worshipped.
Unlike the Middle Eastern religions Judaism, Christianity and Islam which place the human essence- the spirit in the soul, the Yoruba religious orientation regards the Head as being very vital, very potent and possessing its own distinct spirit. Believed to be of crucial factor in determining one’s success or bad luck in life, Ori ["the head"] is worshipped and revered on daily basis. Hence the saying “oogun l’ojo iponju, ori l’ojo gbogbo”[ we summon the use of metaphysical properties on critical days, but we invoke the spirit of the Head every day.] The spirit of the head is distinct from the spirit of the entire body. There is Eda mi, the alter ego, the guardian angel created also by Eleda, the Creator, who is Olorun. The Yoruba distinguish between the two and believe each of the two has its distinct but complimentary powers. “Ori mi aa gbe mi ni’ja [ my head spirit will help me succeed in a fight]. Or, “eda mi aa ja fun mi” [ implying almost the same thing but substituting my head Spirit with my Guardian Angel].
It should be emphasized that the Yoruba basically believe in one Universe and one Central Authority, Olodumare. Rocks, insects, rivers, the sun, the moon, the earth, air, fire, in fact everything in the universe is considered the handiwork of the Supreme Being and therefore deserving of respect and veneration. It also has to be reiterated that the Yoruba never worshipped idols. I cannot speak for the Catholics! While the Yoruba celebrate their Deities; their patron-saints; the way the Catholics do, all their prayers are directed to Olorun- the Supreme Being. The closest to Yoruba religion is Orthodox Judaism which offers sacrifices and invokes the names of its archangels, prophets and such other eminent historical personages.
The word ‘worship’ as it relates to the Yoruba reverence for their Deities is the old English original ‘weorthscipe’ which is, ” to show intense love or devotion to” [Collins Compact English Dictionary] Even while sacrifices are being offered at the shrine of Ogun or any other Deity, the Yoruba direct their prayer to Olorun. Hence the prayer: “Gbogbo ebo ti a ru l’oni ki Olorun je o gba. Ase.”
[May Olorun the Supreme Being accept the prayers offered with these sacrifices: Amen]
The Yoruba also believe in reincarnation and in the spirit world the same way the Arab believe in their world of Al-jinn. Incidentally the Yoruba call spirits Alijonnu. It is strongly held that the spirit of a dead relation could re-incarnate in any shape or form. The idea of death as a permanent end is not known. The physical demise of an old person is celebrated the same way, if not more elaborately than, the birth of a baby is.
Each Yoruba town, indeed every household has its own shrine and it is not uncommon to prefix the names of members of a particular compound or clan with the Divinity they worship. And so adherents of Ogun bear names such as Ogunwale, Ogungbemi ['Ogun has come home', 'Ogun is profitable to me'], and of Orunmila with names such as Ifalana ['Ifa paved the way']. Ifafunmito ['Ifa has given me this [baby] to nurse’], while adherents of Sango could have Sangodare ['Sango vindicated me'], Sangoniyi['Sango has honour'].
The institution of Egungun, and the belief in the existence of witches and witchcraft need some elaboration. The Egungun is a masked representation of the dead, and because the Yoruba believe that the dead can still influence the living, these masked figures appear in very town and village of the Yoruba for several weeks annually during which the whole community celebrate in honour of the spirits of their departed ancestors. It is the most widespread annual event in Yorubaland, and it is the Egungun that gave the Yoruba their first professional travelling theatre. I should emphasize here that Egungun is not masquerade. The Yoruba Egungun is the shrouded spirit.
Witches are feared and respected though not worshiped. They are regarded in the same light as Esu Elagbara. Oral tradition holds that they were the few women in Oduduwa’s party during his migration to Ife. While the Yoruba hold witches in awe, they also believe that they perform some good function in the society. It is the abuse of the purpose of their craft which is heavily condemned. But there is no offering the Yoruba will make without venerating both Esu Elegbara, and Aje ['witches']. Witches are euphemistically called Iya mi Osoronga, afinju eye ti nfo l’oru [ 'My mother, indigene of Osoronga, the sophisticated bird that flies in the night'], or Iya agba ‘[ 'the elder woman'].
We should also note that the Yoruba are fatalistic in their view of the events in the world and believe that a man is born into this world with his own destiny[pre-destination] which he obtains from Olodumare on bended knees. Describes as akunlegba or akunleyan ['That- which- is- received-kneeling'], this concept sums up the Yoruba attitude to tragedy.
Even with the advent of foreign religions, a Yoruba bishop or chief Imam will in a period of serious strife often goes back to consult Ifa oracle and offers sacrifices to his ancestral gods. If he shies away from doing so, his parents or relations will do it for him regardless. As Bernard Shaw puts it a nation that forgets its gods cannot survive.
It is believed that it is faster to reach Olorun the Supreme being through their own patron saint Orunmila or Ogun than through the patron saints or deities from other cultures. And consulting their own diviner or medium, the babalawo who uses Odu-Ifa or Opele, is more reassuring than a diviner using the Quran or the Bible as reference tools.
Another area where we need to refresh our memory is in the realm of Yoruba political structure, which unfortunately has experienced serious and severe battering.
The Yoruba is a Monarchy. But it is a participatory monarchy where democratic norms are practised and vigorously protected. Those who share power in the land include the Kingmakers, the War generals, The Ogboni and Leaders of religious sects, The Judiciary, and the Chamber of Commerce. In all of these institutions, women play active and prominent role.
Oyo kingdom, for example, has the Oyomesi, the council of state headed by the Prime Minister. This council comprises the traditional kingmakers who represent seven major wards of Oyo. And the Constitution of Ondo city-state shows other democratic features which are known to have been shared by most Yoruba states long before the advent of colonial rule. At its great Council, members of the public were generally present as observers, although they could not take part in the proceedings conducted by their representatives. Individual members of the public were however asked, on occasions, for their opinions on important matters. Oral tradition attests to historical claim that representational democracy was in vogue in Ondo before 900AD.
There are a number of secret and sacred societies or institutions which primarily have political and/or judicial functions. Chief amongst these are the Ogboni cult, the twin-cults Oro and Eluku. The Ogboni or Osugbo [as it is called in Egba and Ijebu kingdoms] is a well structured arm of government found in all Yorubaland and it is believed to have originated from Ile-Ife. It is the most secret, and most respected of all sacred institutions and membership is through vigorous ritualistic initiation. There is usually a woman member of the executive known as Erelu, the counterpart of Oluwo ['the head of the Mysteries'].
The Ogboni could take energetic and appropriate action in dealing with any threat to the social and political order. The closely related Eluku and Oro ['bull-roarer cult'] organizations execute their [the Ogboni's] judgements in the case of felons and other law breakers. In special cases, however, such as severe political offences, executions could take place in the Ogboni Lodge.
Our discussion on the Yoruba social, political and religious cultures would not be complete without emphasizing the urban nature of Yoruba settlements. According to Bascom,
Over half of the Nigerian Yoruba in 1952 lived in cities of over 5000, and over 30 percent lived in cities of over 40,000, of which six were larger than 100,000 including Ibadan, the largest native city in Africa. The Yoruba had an index of urbanization of 39.3 which falls below that of great Britain with 65.9, Germany with 46.1, and the united States with 42.3, but it exceeds Canada with 34.3, France with 31.2, Greece with 25.2, and Poland with 17.4. the Yoruba are the most urban of all African people, and their urban way of life is traditional, dating back to well before the period of European penetration.
It can also be claimed that the Yoruba and Bini [of the same Oduduwa ancestry] kingdoms were, as Michael Crowder puts it,
….purely African states whose growth was stimulated neither by contact with Islam nor Europe. They preserved their government, religion, and ways of life in the relative isolation until the Europeans, who had been trading on the coast from the fifteenth century onwards changed their role in the nineteenth century and became proselytes of their religion, their economy, their culture, and finally their political forms.
For the Yoruba to appreciate the challenges facing them and fashion out how to surmount them, they must recognize the depth of damage the race has gone through.
Let us begin with the hierarchy of money and money worship. Let us resolve from here and now that our forefathers did not regard money or material wealth beyond the fifth position they put it.
The United States, a country in North America basterdized our social and economic fabric of communalism and substituted it with the selfish, soulless and egocentric culture of ‘me me me’ and crass capitalism which places the worship of money and materialism above all else.
Religion has been the worst hit. The British basterdized our religion and spirituality. They came with a most illogical concept that tells you to confess your sin, however heinous, to some pastor, and pronto! You are forgiven because some one has paid for an offence that may be committed 5000 years from now!
They labelled Yoruba religious beliefs as paganism. There is nothing like ‘egbe okunkun’ because secret does not translate to darkness.
What dereliction and derision of our sacred religious values, concepts and practices caused us are incalculable. Just too horrendous and humongous to enumerate here in a brief paper such as this. [The Egbeleke example. The Malaysian convict on death row. The Telebolt, and the Telecommand. And many more examples!]
In our political structure, and at all levels, in every hamlet, village and town, our women were involved in every segment of governmental structure. Of the thirty-eight rulers in Ilesha before Owa Agunlejika, “Five Obas had been women” the last of them being Yeeyori, the eighteenth Owa of Ijeshaland [see Robert Smith, The Kingdoms of the Yoruba, page 60]. Women were also known to be involved in all wars-both as Calvary or Infantry. But when Europe and North America forced their political systems down our throats, we were inheriting systems from a people who, for centuries, did not allow franchise to their own womenfolk.
This address cannot and should not be concluded without some hard knocks. What we have been doing by way of Cultural Festivals, Culture Revivals, Dances, Songs, Re-enactments have all been mere dramatised caricatures, and even, sometimes, debasement of the cultures we pretend to celebrate.
As argued by pioneer English Anthropologist Edward B. Tylor in his book, Primitive Culture, published in 1871 and which I quoted earlier, culture is “that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, law, morals, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society.” [Emphasis mine]
It is imperative therefore that the Yoruba must go back in history and study the knowledge that produced the supernatural science or sciences which made the Egungun to transform into cobra, or make communication with people thousands of kilometres possible through invocatory wireless facility. Technology, Medicine, Pharmacology, Engineering and several other sciences grew out of people’s knowledge and culture. The potency of the Word as a purveyor of command and the credible dictum of mind over matter is product of long and well researched belief-system predicated on culture.
The Yoruba had developed and perfected the science of Travel-in time and Kanoko long before any race, just as they developed sign language, wireless telephony, invisible missiles which all belonged to their body of knowledge. No other aspect of Yoruba culture can better and faster restore their dignity than rediscovery and application of their core sciences.
In conclusion, the Yoruba must first and foremost rediscover who they are by researching into their authentic history. They must be re-educated on their cherished value system, their spiritual and religious beliefs and their technologies. They must reclaim and restore their identity and dignity, and they must collectively reclaim their destiny. If submitting slavishly to foreign faiths will forever blind them to their true identity they should reconsider their options.
And if remaining yoked in a marriage they did not negotiate will continue to pull them down, they should also reconsider their options.
The values that made them the first in every human endeavour within the context of Nigeria and even Africa should also be revisited.
But this tomfoolery is not the destiny the Yoruba chose on bended knees!
Thank you for listening.
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