Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, says his visit to Kuje Custodial Centre in the FCT was part of advocacy to commemorate his 8th-year ascension to the throne.
He said in his palace on Thursday that his visit to the centre was not to visit embattled former CBN governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, as reported by some sections of the media.
Ooni made the clarification while receiving two vehicles and three motorcycles presented to him by an indigenous vehicles manufacturing company, Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Ltd.
“I don’t understand why people just misread things in this country. A letter was written to the Nigeria Correctional Service and to the custodial centre in Ile-Ife about my visits.
“I had an assignment in Abuja and Kuje Correctional Centre happened to be nearby. Then, as part of my coronation anniversary, I visited the custodial centre.
“The Hope Alive Initiative, a pet project of one of my queens had a programme in Abuja and I joined to give hope to the hopeless,’’ the Ooni said.
He stressed that he decided to give hope to people in custodial centres regardless of their statuses and it was a humbling experience.
The traditional ruler expressed consternation that some sections of the media misrepresented and misconstrued his visit.
Oba Ogunwusi called on Nigerians to focus on positive issues and on how the country would improve, rather than dwelling on inanities.
The Ooni expressed appreciation of Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing Company Ltd. and appealed to leaders and Nigerians to embrace the use of Made-in-Nigeria products instead of promoting foreign goods.
“We should not allow our local industries to die. We don’t need to benchmark our economy on the dollar.
“I am using this anniversary to appeal to our leaders to stop promoting foreign products. We are the ones killing our industries in this country.
“We must continue to support local companies to grow our economy. It is time we looked inwards in the area of manufacturing.
“Our leaders must promote the local economy through indigenous companies. Let our leaders support local industries to allow our unemployed youths to be gainfully employed,’’ the Ooni admonished.
The paramount ruler charged the National Assembly to make laws to ensure that 70 per cent of goods consumed in the country are locally-made.
“If we consistently patronise Made-in-Nigeria goods, standardisation will set in and the country will develop the more.
“Most of the products I use are locally-made. I want this nation to grow,’’ he stressed.
Ooni Ogunwusi also enjoined Nigerians to support the administration of President Bola Tinubu so it could deliver the dividends of democracy to the citizenry. (NAN)