Lately,there have been clamours for Nigeria to diversify her mono source of foreign exchange earning,crude oil exportation,to agriculture-based industries,tourism,entertainment,creative spheres etc
Apart from a massive expansion of her foreign exchange earning base,there will also be a boom in employment opportunities for her citizens.
The above-stated were part of the reasons that my humble self, Oloye ‘Lekan Alabi,Ekefa Olubadan of Ibadanland and the first Culture
Ambassador of the National Museum and Monument,Ile Ife,was invited by the Irefin Royal Family of Oke Ofa Babasale, Ibadan,Oyo State of Nigeria,to the Family Meeting on Thursday,23rd April,this year,at the Olubadan Irefin Palace,Ibadan.
The Irefin Royal Family spokesman,Prince Irefin,explained that the royal family had started private initiatives to rehabilitate the Olubadan Irefin Palace and turn it into a tourist attraction centre,like the Buckingham Palace in London,Great Britain.
He said it was in this wise,among other cultural reasons,that the Irefin Royal Family decided to invite me as an adviser.
In my response,I thanked the Irefin Royal Family for the honour of inviting me to join the private initiative of rehabilitating the Palace.
I advised that it is imperative to involve Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State,the State Ministry of Information,Tourism and Culture and His Imperial Majesty Oba Saliu Adetunji,Aje Ogungunniso 1,Olubadan of Ibadanland,in the lofty plan.
I emphasised that because of the increasing clamours for Nigeria to broaden her tourism industry ,thereby increasing her foreign exchange capacity,apart from creating more job opportunities,the Irefin Royal Family initiative was not only timely,but would be profitable and sustainable.
I cited the great contributions of tourism to the huge revenue generation of countries like Brazil,the United Kingdom,Kenya,Sierra Leone,Jamaica,etc
For the record,Olubadan Irefin Omo Ogundeyi,the 21st Olubadan,reigned from 1912 to 1914,the year the Amalgamation of Nigeria was signed in London,United Kingdom.