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Sanwo-Olu declares Monday work-free day for Isese festival



Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has approved Monday, August 21, 2023, as a work-free day for all public servants in the state to commemorate the 2023 Isese Day celebration.


Pulse reports that “Isese” is used to denote different kinds of festivals held by adherents of the Yoruba traditional religion and culture, and this year’s edition will be held on Sunday, August 20, 2023.


However, to promote the indigenous culture and tradition of the people of the South West, the state government has asked workers to take Monday off.


This is contained in a circular dated August 18 and signed by the Lagos State Head of Service, Hakeem Muri-Okunola.


Muri-Okunola explained that the decision of Sanwo-Olu to declare Monday a work-free day for public servants was “with a view to promoting our indigenous culture and tradition while preserving our heritage.”


“In restating its commitment to continue to provide the necessary support to traditional institutions in the state with a view to promoting our indigenous culture and tradition while preserving our heritage, Mr. Governor, Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, has graciously declared Monday, 21st August 2023, a work-free day for public servants in the state. Work will, therefore, resume on Tuesday, 22nd August at 8 am prompt,” the circular read in part.


This development comes following appeals by the Lagos State Council of Obas and Chiefs for the state government to officially recognise and declare August 20 as Isese Day holiday in the state.


The traditional rulers, while speaking at the inauguration of the state Council of Obas and Chiefs for another tenure of five years back in July, highlighted the importance for the state to recognise Isese Day in the spirit of democracy and freedom of religion.


Speaking on behalf of the council, the Elegushi of Ikate-Elegushi Kingdom, Oba Saheed Elegushi, said, “It is a demand that has been on the table of the governor for so long.”


In a similar development, Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde has also approved August 20 of every year as “Isese Day” in the state.


Prof. Olanike Adeyemo, the Secretary to the Oyo State Government (SSG), disclosed in a statement on Friday, August 18, 2023, that Makinde also declared this Monday as the maiden public holiday to commemorate the day.

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