By Lucky Isibor,
The Benin monarch, Oba Ewuare II has raised concern over the alleged involvement of youths in money ritual and deplored a situation where parents are now apprehensive of accepting gifts from their children for fear of being used for rituals.
He gave the advise during a Thanksgiving service at Holy Aruosa Cathedral, the Benin National Church in Benin City to round off the 2018 annual Ugie festival Celebrations on Sunday.
Oba Ewuare II, said youths who believe that they can become wealthy by stealing female underwear for ritual purposes should have their heads examined adding that such behaviour was abominable and alien to Benin customs and tradition.
The monarch interceded for Nigeria and her leaders and urged politicians and youths to shun acts that can undermine a free, fair and credible elections in 2019.
He announced N2 million cash donation welfare fund to assist the children of indigent worshipers of Holy Aruosa Cathedral and the development of the church which was built in 15th Century.
The traditional ruler also announced N50, 000 cash gift for the church choir in addition to the sum of N100, 000 donation to other departments of the church located in Akpakpava Street in the State Capital.
In his message, the Chief Priest of Holy Aruosa Cathedral (Ohen-Osa), Harrison Okao, congratulated the Oba of Benin who was clad in a white royal apparel with a beaded cap and a pair of glasses.
He implored the congregation not to adulterate Benin culture and traditions.
The Oba was accompanied by his wives to the church service which was conducted in Edo language.
Top palace functionaries including palace Chiefs, priests and priestesses of different deities, members of the Benin royal family, Dukes and the leadership of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Edo State Council led by its Chairman, Mr. Roland Osakue, took turn to pay tribute to the monarch.
The famous Guild of bronze Casters at Igun, floated a carnival across major Streets in Benin in honour of the royal father for a successful annual Ugie festival which began on December 14, 2018.
There was heavy security presence at the venue while the popular Akpakpava Street was lockdown during the service where politicians jostled to get the attention of the monarch.