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Friday, 11 August 2017

PROUDLY IJESA: Festus Adewale Alonge Is Spreading Yoruba Culture in Faraway Qatar




Africans have a lot to learn from the region, especially Qatar, in terms of preservation of culture and the efforts to ensure that traditions are passed on from generation to generation, a renowned Nigerian culture promoter and media personality has said.

Festus Adewale Alonge, the CEO of Omoloju Productions (a multimedia outfit), said, “I’m highly impressed with the way the Gulf region, especially Qatar, has managed to retain its identity and uniqueness, despite the mixture of cultures as a result of human migration into the region.” “The culture and traditions of any group of people are unique to them and it is what defines them.

Unfortunately, many customs have been lost in a bid to modernise.

Westernisation has also stopped people from realising the importance of their heritage.

The people of this region have managed to rise above these challenges and I sincerely admire what they’ve done and how they were able to do it,” Alonge, an expat in Qatar, said.

The Nigerian entertainer and MC, who also operates an online radio (My Sweet FM) which is dedicated to the promotion of the culture of his tribe – the Yoruba people, added that the pain of seeing so many people, especially children, who are unable to speak their native language was one of the reasons that spurred him into taking up what he is doing at the moment.

“Though I reside in Qatar, I’ve travelled the world.

Hardly will you find a place in the world where you won’t see Africans and especially Nigerians.



It burns my heart each time I come across some of our people and I speak the native language to them and they keep looking at me as if I’m an alien.” “ T h i s shouldn’t be.

I tend to put the blame on parents who allow their own cultural values, especially the language, to erode.

Parents should endeavour to teach their children their native language right from childhood.

Being conversant with one’s native language does not in any way interfere with modern exposure.

This is something I’ve come to appreciate about the Arabs,” he added.

Speaking about his activities and the feedback on the cultural revolution project, Alonge said that the response has been overwhelming.

“Through some of our activities people are now learning the importance of returning to their roots.

Our online radio, which broadcasts almost daily, has really gone viral.

I get calls almost on daily basis especially from Europe and North America, as well as Asia, thanking us for the good job being done and informing us on how the programmes have changed people’s views.” On how the journey into media s t a r t e d , the softs p o k e n b r o a d - caster said that he has always admired TV and radio personalities while growing up and it was always his dream to pursue that as a career.

“I was also privileged to have an uncle who was in that profession and he was my childhood hero.

I’m always happy seeing him whenever he comes around but I never had the opportunity of starting until I finished secondary school when there was an opportunity for an audition in my area.

“I went there and I was initially discouraged from participating as nobody thought I could actually perform.

My performance that day was quite amazing and many asked if I had been doing this before.

Africans should appreciate their culture: Nigerian broadcaster

African Panorama | Catherine W Gichuki : Africans have a lot to learn from the region, especially Qatar, in terms of preservation of culture and the efforts to ensure that traditions are passed on from generation to generation, a renowned Nigerian culture promoter and media personality has said.

Festus Adewale Alonge, the CEO of Omoloju Productions (a multimedia outfit), said, “I’m highly impressed with the way the Gulf region, especially Qatar, has managed to retain its identity and uniqueness, despite the mixture of cultures as a result of human migration into the region.” “The culture and traditions of any group of people are unique to them and it is what defines them.

Unfortunately, many customs have been lost in a bid to modernise.

Westernisation has also stopped people from realising the importance of their heritage.

The people of this region have managed to rise above these challenges and I sincerely admire what they’ve done and how they were able to do it,” Alonge, an expat in Qatar, said.

The Nigerian entertainer and MC, who also operates an online radio (My Sweet FM) which is dedicated to the promotion of the culture of his tribe – the Yoruba people, added that the pain of seeing so many people, especially children, who are unable to speak their native language was one of the reasons that spurred him into taking up what he is doing at the moment.

“Though I reside in Qatar, I’ve travelled the world.

Hardly will you find a place in the world where you won’t see Africans and especially Nigerians.

It burns my heart each time I come across some of our people and I speak the native language to them and they keep looking at me as if I’m an alien.” “ T h i s shouldn’t be.

I tend to put the blame on parents who allow their own cultural values, especially the language, to erode.

Parents should endeavour to teach their children their native language right from childhood.

Being conversant with one’s native language does not in any way interfere with modern exposure.

This is something I’ve come to appreciate about the Arabs,” he added.

Speaking about his activities and the feedback on the cultural revolution project, Alonge said that the response has been overwhelming.

“Through some of our activities people are now learning the importance of returning to their roots.

Our online radio, which broadcasts almost daily, has really gone viral.

I get calls almost on daily basis especially from Europe and North America, as well as Asia, thanking us for the good job being done and informing us on how the programmes have changed people’s views.” On how the journey into media s t a r t e d , the softs p o k e n b r o a d - caster said that he has always admired TV and radio personalities while growing up and it was always his dream to pursue that as a career.

“I was also privileged to have an uncle who was in that profession and he was my childhood hero.

I’m always happy seeing him whenever he comes around but I never had the opportunity of starting until I finished secondary school when there was an opportunity for an audition in my area.

“I went there and I was initially discouraged from participating as nobody thought I could actually perform.

My performance that day was quite amazing and many asked if I had been doing this before.

That was how the journey started and the rest, as they say, is history,” Alonge added.

The media personality added that he is passionate about promoting the rich Yoruba culture in every way possible, particularly through the various media now available and he is ready to give his all to achieve this.

Festus Adewale Alonge hails from Ilesa, Osun state, Southwest Nigeria.

(Culled from the Qatar Tribune)



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