|Nickname(s): Land of Virtue|
Location of Ọsun State in Nigeria
|Date created||27 August 1991|
|• Governor||Rauf Aregbesola (ACN)|
|• Total||9,251 km2 (3,572 sq mi)|
|Area rank||28th of 36|
|Population (1991 census)|
|• Estimate (2005)||4,137,627|
|• Rank||17th of 36|
|• Density||240/km2 (620/sq mi)|
|• Total||$7.28 billion|
|• Per capita||$2,076|
|Time zone||WAT (UTC+01)|
|ISO 3166 code||NG-OS|
Osun State is an inland state in south-western Nigeria. Its capital is Osogbo. It is bounded in the north by Kwara State, in the east partly by Ekiti State and partly by Ondo State, in the south by Ogun State and in the west by Oyo State. The state's current governor is Rauf Aregbesola, who was declared as the winner of 2007 election by Appeal Court in Ibadan on 26 November 2010. Osun State is home to several of Nigeria's most famous landmarks, including the campus of Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria's pre-eminent institution of higher learning. The university is also located in the ancient town of Ile-Ifẹ, an important early center of political and religious development for Yoruba culture. Other important cities and towns include the ancient kingdom-capitals of Oke-Ila Orangun, Ila Orangun, Ijebu-Jesa, Ede, Iwo, Ejigbo, Modakeke, Ibokun, Ifetedo, Esa-Oke and Ilesa.
The modern Osun State was created in 1991 from part of the old Oyo State. The state's name is derived from the River Osun, the venerated natural spring that is the manifestation of the Yoruba goddess of the same name.
The former Governor Oyinlola launched and laid the foundation for the groundbreaking of Osun State University with six campuses (Osogbo, Okuku, Ikire, Ejigbo, Ifetedo, and Ipetu-Ijesha) strategically located across the state. Important cultural events in the state include the Ori Oke and Egungun festival in Iragbiji, Olojo in Ife and the Osun Osogbo festival.
Every year, adherents and non-adherents of Osun, one of the Orisa (the traditional deities of the Yoruba people), travel from all over the world to attend the annual Osun-Osogbo festival in August. Visitors include nationals of Brazil, Cuba, Trinidad, Grenada, and other nations in the Americas with a significant Yoruba cultural heritage. Annual traditional festivities and invocations of the Osun goddess are held along the banks of the river bearing her name into which - according to Yoruba Oratory traditions - she transformed.
Ọṣun-Ọṣogbo Grove, the shrine of the annual rites of the deity and an important artistic center, was declared a World Heritage Site in 2005.
The major sub-ethnic groups in Ọṣun State are Ife, Ijesha, Oyo, Ibolo and Igbomina of the Yoruba people, although there are also people from other parts of Nigeria. Yoruba and English are the official languages. People of Osun State practice Islam, Christianity and paganism called traditional faith.
Muslims and Christians in Osun State
Osun State, created from the old Oyo State in August 1991, has a large population of both Muslims and Christians. Among the famous religious leaders from Osun State is the London-based Muslim cleric Sheikh Dr. Abu-Abdullah Adelabu, who hailed from the state's capital city, Osogbo and Pastor (Dr.) Johnson Ade Odewale of Christ Apostolic church, Calvary Assembly from Odeomu, who is based in Boston, USA. The Osun State government claims to offer services to both Muslims and Christians in the state, especially through Pilgrims Welfare Boards. Osun is the home of many Christian religious leaders in the country today, most of whom are from Ijeshaland, including Pastor Adeboye who is the general overseer of The Redeemed Christian Church of God, also Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi, the founder and General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church is from Erin-Ijesha, Osun State and many other Christian Leaders.
Osun State is divided into three federal senatorial districts, each of which is composed of two administrative zones. The state consists of thirty Local Government Areas, the primary (third tier) unit of government in Nigeria. Osun state barely has a flag
Osun State's 30 Local Government Areas are headquarters:
- See List of Governors of Osun State for a list of prior governors
- "C-GIDD (Canback Global Income Distribution Database)". Canback Dangel. Retrieved 2008-08-20.