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John Randle Centre for Yoruba Culture and History inaugurated by President Buhari in Lagos

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday opened the John Randle Centre for Yoruba Culture and History in Lagos.

The President, along with the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, and the Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, inspected the entire complex.

”I declare this site open,” the President said.

The urban redevelopment at the centre of Lagos Island, a region of the city steeped in rich history, includes the John Randle Center for Yoruba Culture and History.


Originally constructed in 1928, the centre was formerly a focal point for leisure, entertainment, and cultural tourism.

Currently being redeveloped as a cultural attraction to tell visitors the traditional tale of the Yoruba ethnicity, one of the most significant ethnic groups in Nigeria.

The facility’s site architect, Mr. Damilare Ojewole, who gave guests a tour of the building, noted that the centre highlights the genesis of Yoruba culture.

Ojewole claimed that the centre uses “Ile-Ori,” “Ori-Olokun,” “Esu,” and other techniques to teach people about the founding of the Yoruba empire.

He claims that there is an additional recreation section with a large swimming pool and eateries.

“This place, you will learn about happenings in the Yoruba empire in the olden days and now, the customs and practices.

“We have exhibitions on how naming ceremonies were conducted in the old, divinations, it reveals the various masquerades in Yoruba land, we have contemporary art section, fashion and more.

“At another section, we have a gadget for visitors to check the meaning of their names and we have a good ambience  for tales by moonlight.

“The permanent exhibition here celebrates the language, rituals, festivals, deities and ancestry of the Yoruba people at this time and  will ensure that the legacy of Yoruba culture and history is kept alive in Lagos,” he said.

The centre will enable both Yoruba experts and beginners to delve into the tales, myths, and customs of Yoruba heritage.

For educational programmes, art exhibitions, and live music events, the location offers an unmatched atmosphere.

According to reports, the centre offers yoruba people from Southwest Nigeria and other countries in the Americas and the Caribbean, including Cuba, Brazil, Haiti, and Haiti, a space for reflection and reconnection.
It demonstrates how Yoruba culture is still having an impact on musicians, artists, and creative thinkers today.

The center’s architecture draws inspiration from traditional Yoruba craftsmanship and architecture, using visual metaphors to express the language and culture’s deep artistic and philosophical roots.

The fractal-like building form, which rises from the ground and leans forward (O tesiwaju) to depict the Yoruba people’s progressive nature, responds to its environment.

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