Fela’s father’s heavy cane made me what I am today – Soyinka Amosun unveils Kuti Heritage House in Abeokuta

Wole Soyinka, an Emeritus Professor of Comparative Literature and the Nobel Laureate on Friday disclosed that strict background and discipline he received while growing up with his uncle; father of the Afrobeat legend, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, Oludotun Ransome-Kuti, shaped and toned up his life to have become what he is today.

Soyinka, who is one of extended family members of Oludotun and Olufunmilayo Ransome-Kuti, father and mother of the great musician, relived how tough it was to have spent two years at the Abeokuta Grammar School, a school that had his uncle, Oludotun Ransome-Kuti then, as the principal of the school.

The Nobel Laureate, who was one of the personalities that attended the Unveiling of the Kuti Heritage House at Isabo area of Abeokuta which was refurbished by the Ogun state government, said that the two years he spent with his uncle was enough to have toned up his life and made him what he is today though he later escaped to the Ibadan Grammar School.

“I remember my uncle, I remember that he wielded heavy cane, that was what made us. Two years were more than enough to tone me up. I spent two years at Abeokuta Grammar School before I escaped to Ibadan Grammar School, which to him, was an ‘Ajebuta’ school, a school that was only made for spoilt child”, he said.

While expressing gratitude to Governor Ibikunle Amosun and his Cabinet for the refurbishing and upgrading of Fela’s family house in Abeokuta tagged, “Kuti Heritage House and Museum, Soyinka asked African government, especially Nigeria’s government, to preserve African culture and tradition by investing in it.

Yemisi Ransome-Kuti noted that integrity, human value, hardwork, selflessness and patriotism that were put up by her family to the national development from various fields of human endeavours translated to what the people and government of the state was celebrating and not wealth and position attained by their family.

Yewande Amusan, Senior Consultant to Ogun Governor on Culture and Tourism, said that Kuti Heritage House was a well thought out idea and investment to preserve the legacies of Ransome-Kuti’s family as befitting museum was put up to tell the stories of the Fela’s family and Abeokuta as a whole.

But, Governor Ibikunle Amsoun of Ogun state, who unveiled Kuti Heritage House in company of Wole Soyinka, members of the State Executive Council and other members of Ransome-Kuti’s family, declared that the unveiling of Ransome-Kuti Heritage House was part of State government’s effort to celebrate Ogun state sons and daughters, and preserve the cultural heritage and outlook of the State and Nigeria as a whole.



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