By Kolawole Olayinka, Abeokuta
Ogun State Government in partnership with the Federal Government has begin plan to immortalise the popular Fela family by turning the family house in Abeokuta to a museum.
Named ‘Heritage Museum’, the family house located at NEPA road in Isabo, Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital is wearing a new look when the Minister of information, culture and tourism, Alhaji Lai Muhammed came calling on Wednesday.
The Minister, who arrived the site with governor of the state, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, lauded the initiative with a pledge to partner the state government in achieving the project.
He said the restoration and preservation of the family house was more symbolic at a time when the 20th anniversary of Fela’s death is being celebrated adding that the project will be a model for inspiration to youths.
He said, “It is laudable in the sense that this is one of the most positive steps to actually put our theoretic into action. We’ve always said that one of the important asset we have is our cultural heritage, our history and this project which is going to immortalise Kuti’s family, I think its very laudable and admirable.
“The Kuti family, as you know, they represent different things to different people, either you talk about education; emancipation; music; entertainment; therefore, this attempt by the government immortalising the family by preserving and restoring the ancestral home of the great family, I think it is very commendable.
“This is the period we are celebrating the 20th anniversary of the death of the maestro himself and I am sure this is within time to be commissioned very soon, probably next year or thereabout.
“The emphasis of this government weather state or federal is that creative industry must be turn to creative economy and I think this center is going to be a good model to encourage and inspire the youths.”
Governor Amosun who promised to deliver the project soonest posited that Fela’s family was one of the giants that laid the foundation of a greater Ogun State.
The Governor promised to construct museum for other industrious sons and daughter of the state in order to preserve the heritage.
He said, “All our icons, they have special place in out administration, these are people that defines us, when we go our there and said we are Ogun State, we can’t call ourselves who we said we are without those giants that lived before us that laid the foundation that we are all building upon.
“And clearly, the Kuti family is one of those illustrious families that conquered the world, not only Ogun Sate or Abeokuta or Nigeria. Indeed, sometime when I was away in US and I took a cab, the music I was hearing was the music of great Fela himself.
“Fela was far ahead of his time, for us, it will be in our interest to let people know his origin, his root, where he was from, and somehow the way the Kuti family, there’s none of them that is not a book and history on his own that people will love to read any day anytime.
“We are going to have museum for all of them, it is not just the Kuti Family alone, we have several of them here; we talk about Baba Ogunde; great Ebenezer Obe, thank God he’s still here with us, this is just one of those things we are going to do and we are happy that next year, people will be using this and we will commission this.”