Fadahunsi’s example: one Nigeria at Ilase Ijesa.

By Bolaji O. Akinyemi.

A grieving nation was yet to come out of her mourning. The blood flow upon the hills of the plateau hasn’t ceased. Fresh was still the bodies of about 200 people murdered by marauding Fulani herders in Bokos Local Government Area of Plateau State, the wounded still lies critical, at the border of life and death not knowing their fate! When I arrived Ilase-Ijesa, tensed was the atmosphere over the country.

The underlying factor of religious intolerance usually associated with such experience was visible everywhere in the country.

Sheikh Abubakar Gumi minced not his words. His men of faith kept in the bush will continue to kill more christians until hospital and schools are built for them!

But nay! Ilase-Ijesha hasn’t been captured by the intolerance spirit of persons like Abubakar Gumi!

The foundation of unity and oneness was long laid by the Asiwaju of Ilase-Ijesa, Senator Ade Fadahunsi, whose developmental strides before he ever became the Senator saw all Mosques and Churches in the town renovated! Fadahunsi is a Christian, the Baba Ijo of Saint Paul Anglican Church Ilase-Ijesa. Asiwaju in Yoruba is a traditional title for the leader. Holders of the title must be above partisan politics and religious division in leadership duty. Ilase-Ijesa people are bonded because their Asiwaju has demonstrated same. A politician whose empowerment programmes and development projects bear no colour of religion or partisanship.

A three days annual crusade is hosted by the Christian Association of Nigeria, Ilase Ijesa branch, I am privileged to be the initiator of the idea some 20 years ago; 2004 to be precise. 2023 edition held with a difference. The Crusade was powered by Christian Association of Ilase-Ijesa under the leadership of Pastor Jacob Opoola, the Acting Chairman of CAN Ilase-Ijesa. This year’s theme is; ARISE & SHINE, it started on Thursday 28th December 2023 and ended Saturday 30th December 2023. It was officially supported by Voice of His Word Ministries and its President, my humble self Apostle, Dr. Bolaji Akinyemi.
The crusade started 4pm each day.
Signs of success of the program began to manifest on Tuesday 26th of December when a crusade rally was observed. It witnessed a long train consequently the massive turnout of people from the nooks and crannies of Obokun local government for the Crusade was expected!

Day 1- Thursday 28th; The crusade started at about 4:15pm with CAN members, church choir and christian leaders from Ilase and environs all clad in their customized T-shirt for the program. Also in attendance at the opening are chiefs and Obas in and around Ilase.
During his opening speech, the convener of the project introduced the Guest Ministers in attendance and urge the indigenes to encourage the project and be prayerful towards the progress of the town and ijeshaland.
The preacher and the guest minister for the day Venerable Blessing Ajayi used the opportunity to pray for the town.

Olaniyi Fadipe of the “Ijinle ninu Ijinle” fame was the guest song minister on the first day!

Day 2. 29th Dec. ; The program started as usual at about 4pm with the host choristers group followed by prayers from various ministers to God to heal the land. The guest artist for the evening; sensational Ijobukky Gospel Bata brought everyone out of their houses!

The Hausa Community could not resist the glamour of Bata Gospel and the traditional steppings that goes with it. The Fulani were also captivated by the sound of Bata drums out of the forest to become part of the audience on the crusade ground. The dynamic me found partnership with the pragmatic local organising committee and had no problem responding to the needs of the moment as they got someone to interprete in Hausa to the delight of the crowd, while the guest minister Pastor Olaitan Aromolaran from Lagos uses his own sermon to encourage and shower blessings on everyone in attendance and diaspora. Bro Edward Olubunmi, a mysterious gift of grace packaged in human weakness yet showing the excellency of God brought forth words of prophecy regarding the throne of Ilase-Ijesa. The throne, he said they have hurt and it needs healing. A man with sight challenge being led about yet, can read the Bible, I didn’t say recite, but read!

He came to stand in for Daddy John Adejoro-Oluwa and the Plummet Mission the Apostolic authority we report to!

3rd Day, 30th Dec; The day marks the grand finale of the crusade and it was a great success which witnessed massive turnout, greater number than the previous days. Seyi Crown, a popular Music Artist, was the artist for the evening.
A re-known Man of God, Prophet Prof. Peter Adeniyi Olowoporoku, an indigenes of Ile-Ife and frontline Gospeller in Nigeria ministered to the congregants with his different mode of preaching and prophetic declarations. Hitherto, the day was blessed and memorable.
In attendance were the Chiefs and Dignitaries from Ilase-Ijesa. The Alase of Ilase-Ijesa Oba Isiaka Adesina, Ajarabiolu; Odundun Asoludero came with his Oloris, 3 beautiful women.

Apostle Dr Bolaji O Akinyemi assured the Kabiyesi of developmental strides between the 2023 and the 2024 crusade and led the audience to pray for a University and at least 4 cottage industries!

Participants spoken to during the Crusade admitted that this year’s event is the best in many years!

They talked of the state of the arts equipment used. Customized T-shirts for all categories of Crusade officials and many other new developments. They are already enthusiastic about 2024 Crusade! Ilase-Ijesa is the birthplace of the People’s Senator; Chief Ade Fadahunsi representing Osun East; Ife-Ijesa at the senate. He was also prayed for during the Crusade.
May the good Lord keep us till December 28, 29 and 30th 2024. (AMEN). See you in Ilase-Ijesa.

Dr Bolaji O. Akinyemi is an Apostle and Nation Builder, President Voice Of His Word Ministries, Convener Apostolic Round Table; ART

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