The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enita Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, has said it is unfair to call Osun devotees idol worshippers.
The monarch also said the country would overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.
He made the pronouncements while playing host to Osun devotees in his palace, as the ancient city celebrated the Osun festival on Saturday.
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Ogunwusi, who admitted that the pandemic was still ravaging the country, urged Nigerians to always observe laid down precautionary measures and avoid circulation of fake news.
His words: “Unlike the way we used to have it in Ife, we were forced to restrict this celebration which is a major festival in Ife.
“Our restriction made us to ensure that we don’t create more problems, while trying to solve the one at hand.
“Osun festival, as the world knows, is the celebration of water and we all know that water is life.
“We’re using this instance to reconnect with our creator through nature to cleanse the world, and especially to end the pandemic.
“We are remembering our ancestors and it is unfair to call us idol worshipers.”
The Osun Government was represented at the event by Mrs Sola Duro-Ladipo, Director of Field Research, Festival and Documentation, Ministry of Culture and Tourism.
Other dignitaries also graced the occasion, which was held in adherence to COVID-19 precautionary measures.