The need to reawaken the consciousness of people to indigenous Traditional Board Game popularly known as Ayo”‘ which not only challenges intellectual capabilities of the players but also enhances relaxation and unity of people from different ethnic groups has been brought to the fore.
Declaring open the Traditional Board Game Competition. ( Ayo) which is part of the activities lined up at the on going 34th edition of the National Festival Of Arts and Culture, NAFEST, 2021 taking place at Ado-Ekiti, the Director general of the National Council For Arts and Culture Otunba Olusegun Runsewe emphasized on the need to preserve the rich cultural heritage particularly the traditional games that binds different ethnic groups together.
Traditional Board Game ‘Ayo: otherwise known as “” Game of the intellectual” ‘played on a carved wooden board is usually between two persons.
The Ayo seeds used in playing the game is believed to be named after the plant that bears the ‘Ayo” seeds.
Over the years the traditional board game competition “”Ayo’: olopon. has been among the line up of activities at NAFEST.
This is to reawaken the consciousness of people, educate and as well introduce the game to the younger generation particularly the children taking part in NAFEST.
The NCAC Director General, Otunba Olusegun Runsewe who went down memory lane on the importance of the game, said the ‘Ayo’ puts the brain at alert more than most of the trending mobile games , pointing out that it is the interest of the council to continue to reawaken people’s consciousness to what makes the country thick and binding people together in the early years by celebrating the country’s unity in diversity.
He said this is the time Nigerians need to come together and understand each other’s cultural values by appreciating each other’s culture and tell our stories .
Otunba Runsewe listed Culture and Sports as two important tools that unites Nigerians and urged the states taking part in the Traditional Board Game Competition not to feel bad if they loose out in the game.
In a remark, the Head of Civil Service, Ekiti state Mrs Peju Babafemi who commended NCAC for said she is a fan of Ayo game because she was brought up to love the game.
She described the game as a relaxing game that keeps one thinking out of the box..
For a Professor of Chemical engineering, Professor Mobolaji Aluko Ayo is a geometrical and mathematical game that tasks the brain given the calculation involved in playing the game.
Ten states Bayelsa, Delta, Ekiti, Lagos Ogun, Rivers, Ondo, Nassarawa, Niger state and the Federal Capital territory participated in the Ayo Olopon competition with laid down rules guiding the competition.
The result of the winner will be announced November 20 during the Grand finale.