Excitement as Ilorin emirate holds Durbar despite ban (PHOTOS)

In spite of the ban on the annual Durbar festival in Ilorin, Kwara State, the organisers still found a way to actualise some of their programmes.

The state government had earlier prohibited the cultural event slated for the second day of Sallah, citing security concerns.

But this development did not go down well with some members of the emirate who had spent months planning the event only to be called off on the eve of the D-day.

New honorary title holders were to be announced at the event according to plans, PREMIUM TIMES learnt.

So, rather than jettison the whole Durbar festival, the organisers, on the approval of the Emir, incorporated some Durbar programmes as an extension of Bareke.

Bareke is a royal practice, whereby the traditional institution reciprocates an earlier Sallah homage paid by the state governor in a courtesy visit to his office.

The Emir of Ilorin, Ibrahim Sulu Gambari, visited the Government House in Ilorin on Thursday, two days after the Eid-el-Kabir celebration.

Meanwhile, as against the usual practice, a grand reception was awaiting the monarch at his palace.


The unusual Bareke witnessed a mammoth crowd of onlookers and indigenes of the town, who had anticipated the spectacular cultural displays.

It also featured a glamorous display of decorated horses and music performances from Indigenous artistes, the major highlights of the Durbar.

As observed by PREMIUM TIMES’s reporter, the event showcased the culture of the ancient city that is home to different ethnic groups and extractions.

Founded in 1450, Ilorin was the provincial military headquarters of the ancient Oyo Empire.


In the postcolonial era, the city was populated by the Yoruba, Hausa, Fulani, Nupe, Baruba, Kanuri and Malian ethnic groups.

Below are moments captured

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