The traditional relationship of Oba Liken of Ibefun and the people of Lagos and Ibiyeroye marriage may explain the notion that Eyo was introduced to Lagos from Ibefun. Chief Tajudeen Gbadesere revealed that, “the variant of Eyo staged was in the night entailing three consecutive outings in a performance where the use of Aropale and other paraphernalia were absent. Nevertheless, the place of Malaki and Ejilu in the historical origin of the fanciful Eyo play is brought out forcefully in a praise song rendered as: Malaki nsaye Nsaye Ejilu say a to. . . Ofi akala mode, mesi kole Olomu kole wa me Eyo Omowewe abese loni Eko Edi orikoda si irele (Chief Adisa Jinadu, 1986) Again, Ejilu and Malaki are credited for their role in the Awo Opa religion and culture especially, in the Adamuorisha in Lagos. No wonder the saying: “Mole Ejilu, Mole Malaki”.
- Omowunmi Lilian Adegunwa & Idara Isong-Ibanga
he distinct way of life of a people, define its culture and tradition, an unspoken or unwritten guide for people to identify such group with. A period when what is beyond the ordinary is celebrated with the scenic frills, and thrills of glamoursous funfair making corporate brand participant the envy of competition. This evolution is the timeless essence of an existence strong enough to provoke remarkable global interest and fellowship, draw people from far and near to a melting point of leisure seen with the finest presentation of a race's cultural heritage. It was indeed a tourist delight as well as money spinner for the organizers in Lagos State. A renaissance of a people's true way of being. The undoubted pride of Lagos. Eyo Festival. The Adamuorisha play was certainly, a heritage for Lagos State. Eko or the city of Lagos and the home of Eyo, the economic capital of Nigeria, reputed for more traditional or cultural mosaic which include Elegba, Ota and olokun among others was a beehive recently. Primordially the Eyo or Adamourisha play is shrouded in Lagos oral traditions centred on Olori Olugbani, Oba Ado's wife and Ejilu and Malaki her kinsmen who brought two Eyo Orishas: Oniko and Ologede respectively from Ibefun in the Ijebu waterside and enriches same with the Awo Opa from Oyo to honour Olugbani on her death as a royal personage. However, traditional account from Awe Adimu, according to Chief T. A. Ibikunle, the Akinshiku of Lagos, the deity called Adimu Orisa incorporating Adimu, Orisha-Oko and today reticent Ogunran came as gifts from Benin to Oba Ashipa. Initially kept at Ike-Ipa near Glover Road waterfront, Ikoyi, where play watched by the royal house and nobles were held forth-nightly. From Oke-Ipa, the deities were relocated to Ita-Ado, Iduritafa, Isale-Eko, Lagos Island under the custodian of Ejilu. Thus, Ejilu and Malaki are known to have brought the Adimu deity and therefore, Eyo to Lagos. And ever since then the story of Lagos has changed.
The beauties of
Priding itself as centre of excellence with an unequal aquatic splendour, culture tradition and socio-religious grandeur of impeccable worship. Lagos has a retinue of celebration by a people of diverse assemblage, speaking one language in one voice and one song in a season of one play. The Igbe song, the traditional music of the queens of the royal households, has become, perhaps, the theme song for the memorial ceremonial revival of a unique cultural essence, Eyo. Chief Aziz B. Akilagun II, the Onilegbale of Lagos, in “The Truth about Eyo Masquerade”, an article published in the Lagos News, December 19, 1986, stated this. 'The Eyo play and not Orisha (Adimu Oniko, Ologede and Alaketepupa or Laba) were brought to Lagos from Ibefun in about 1750 by Ejilu and Malaki, the two male cousins to Olori Olugbani, the wife of Oba Ado and mother of Erelu Kuti of Lagos… Ejilu and Malaki… came from Ibefun in search of Olugbani who was said to have died before they arrived Lagos. Fortunately, they met Olugbani's daughter, Erelu Kuti, and her two...