National Social Secretary of the Ifa Council, Baba-Awo Awogbemiga Bogunmbe, has called for the introduction of Ifa religious studies as an academic discipline by universities in Southwest Nigeria.
Bogunmbe, who is also the Public Relation Officer (PRO) of the Oyo state chapter of the council, made this appeal while speaking with newsmen in Ibadan over the weekend to commemorate this year annual Isese Day.
According to the Ifa priest, who is the President of the Ogundameji TempleInternational of the Indigenous Faith of Africa, Agbala Ifa, Apata, Ibadan, the introduction of Ifa Religious Studies as an academic discipline in universities located in South-west Nigeria will go a long way in propagating the religion.
His words: “if the University of Ibadan has a department for Arabic and Islamic studies, what stops the university from having a department for Ifa religious study? This will go a long way in propagating the religion, which is our heritage. There are many people in America and Europe, who are eager to learn about the Ifa religion.”
The Ifa priest also used the opportunity to appeal to the striking Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Federal Government of Nigeria to settle their differences in the best interest of Nigerian students.
He advised the Federal Government to try as much as possible to honour the 2009 agreement with ASUU in order not to prolong the on-going strike unnecessarily, and for the students to return to their various schools for academic works on time.
Bogunmbe noted that traditional religion has been used to help many Nigerians to solve their social, economic and spiritual problems more than any other religion in the country, adding that same could be used to solve national problems like corruption and insecurity, if properly propagated.
He blamed traditional rulers, especially in Yorubaland for failing to properly propagate traditional religions, as custodians of our cultural heritage.
Bogunmbe, however, commended the efforts of people like Professor Idowu Odeyemi, Professor Wande Abimbola and Chief Yemi Elebu-Ibon, for using their knowledge, resources and personalities to promote Ifa religion.