Ilorin Emirate Prepares for 2024 Durbar Celebration

Tunde Akanbi, Ilorin

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Final arrangements have been completed for the highly anticipated 2024 Ilorin Emirate Durbar, set to take place on Tuesday, June 17, two days after the Eid-el-Kabir festival. This vibrant celebration, showcasing the rich cultural heritage of the Ilorin Emirate, promises to be a spectacle with over 500 horses parading through the city.

 

Engr. Suleiman Alapansanpa, Chairman of the Ilorin Emirate Durbar Committee, announced this during a news conference at the Emir’s palace in Ilorin, heralding the unique Durbar event.

He stated that the festival will be held at the forecourt of the ancient palace and throughout Ilorin from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, June 17, 2024.

He added that the horse procession, featuring over 500 horsemen, will be led by the Emir himself and accompanied by the Kwara State Governor, Mallam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, the High Chiefs of the Emirate, members of the royal family, and honorary titleholders.

Alapansanpa mentioned that large screens will be placed in strategic locations across Ilorin to help alleviate overcrowding at the palace.

He expressed delight that the festival has become a unifying event, bringing together people of various backgrounds from the Ilorin Emirate.

“It has promoted fraternity and cordial relationships among our people. It serves as a relaxation point for our people who come home from far and near. It has also boosted the local economy as more sales are recorded by traders all over Ilorin during the festival. What about the hospitality industry? The owners and operators of hotels within and around Ilorin, which provide accommodation for tourists have gained more. The same can be said of the printing, media and transportation sub-sectors. They have gained tremendously as a result of the huge patronage of their businesses during the successive Durbar festival.”

The Chairman of the committee also attested that the fame of Ilorin has been boosted, securing a prominent place on Nigeria’s tourism map due to the increasingly popular Durbar festivals

Alapansanpa expressed gratitude to Governor AbdulRazaq for his continued support in helping the Committee organize successful festivals year after year.

“The Emir particularly appreciated the exciting participations of the Governor and members of his family in the last two editions of the festival. While the Committee notes that the participation of the Governor, which was widely reported by the media, added colour to the event, the Emir expects a repeat of that feat this year,” he added.

 

“This year’s Durbar activities shall run for seven different days with different programmes. The first of the events is the Health Day that would take place on Thursday at the Emir’s Palace.”

According to him, this is done to enable indigenes and residents of Ilorin Emirate to know their health status.

He also announced that drugs and medications would be provided for patients with minor ailments while those with more serious ones would be referred to relevant hospitals.

Alapansanpa disclosed that the medications will be handled by experienced medical experts of Ilorin Emirate origin as their own contributions to the wellbeing of the people of the community.

“On Friday, June 14, 2024, a special Jumaat service would be conducted at the magnificent Ilorin Central Juma’at Mosque. The session would be presided over by the Chief Imam of Ilorin, Shaykh Muhammad Bashir Salihu . It shall be attended by the Emir and other dignitaries from far and near. This shall however be preceded at 6:30 am by endurance trek across the city that would create additional awareness for the programme.”

“Saturday, June 15, 2024 would also be dedicated to specific prayer for the all-round success of the entire Durbar programme. This would be held at the Madrasat Sheikh Alimi at the Emir’s palace beginning at 9:00am. Road shows with well decorated horses to be mounted by expert horse-riders would also be conducted round the city of Ilorin as the day would also witness the Ilorin Emirate Exhibition at the Emir’s palace.”

“Sunday (June 16,2024), which is the main day of the Idel Kabir festival, would witness the Emir leading the people and residents of Ilorin Emirate to Ilorin Eid praying ground for the observance of special two rakaat prayers. The prayers shall equally be led by the Chief Imam of Ilorin, Shaykh Muhammad Bashir Salihu”

“Immediately after the prayers, the Emir would host the state Governor , AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq to a traditional sallah homage. The venue shall be at this palace and the time shall be 11:00a.m.

“Immediately after the visit, members of the community would, thereafter, go to their various homes to conduct the sacrifice of their various sacrificial animals as mandated by the Almighty Allah”.

He disclosed that on Monday, June 17, 2024, the Emir would pay the Governor of Kwara State a sallah homage at the Government House, Ilorin while this event is shifted to the second day of the sallah instead of the usual third day because of the need to hold the main Durbar activities on the third day as against the previous second day it had been held since inception.

 

 

 

 

Oluchi Okwuego

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