The House of Representatives on Tuesday urged the Federal Government to include Igbo-Ora town in Oyo State on the tentative list of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation’s (UNESCO) World Heritage Centres for being the town with the highest number of twin births in the world.
In a resolution the House passed during plenary in Abuja, it also urged UNESCO “to accord Igbo-Ora town, being the world’s twins capital, the status of World Heritage Centre.”
The House, which was presided over by the Speaker, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila, passed the resolution following a motion moved by a lawmaker from Oyo State, Rep. Ajibola Muraina.
The lawmaker told his colleagues that the twinning rate in Igbo-Ora was 50 twins out of every 1000 births.
Muraina’s detailed motion reads, “The House notes that about 1.6 million twins are born annually in the world which translates to a rate of 13.1 twins per 1000 births;
“Also notes that research reveals that Yorubaland which includes Nigeria Southwest, parts of the Republics of Benin and Togo, is the leading ethnic group across the globe for twin births, with an annual twinning rate of 40.2 twins per 1000 births;
“Aware that Igbo-Ora, a town in Ibarapa axis of Oyo State in the Southwest has the highest annual twinning rates in the world, with an annual twinning rate of 50 twins per 1000 births;
“Also aware that the child mortality rate in Nigeria fluctuates between 201 deaths per 1000 births in 1990 to 58.2 deaths per 1000 births in 2021, which implies that the actual twinning rates in Igbo-Ora would be higher than the figure quoted above;
“Worried that despite attempts by researchers to discover the cause of the uncommon high twining rate recorded in Igbo-Ora no researcher has been able to discover the cause of the twinning rate, a natural birth phenomenon in Igbo-Ora despite the different attempts;
“Believes that a successful revelation of this hidden world secret may be key to the survival of the human race in the future and be handy in solving fertility issues in the world;
“Disappointed that though the world has informally acknowledged Igbo-Ora as the World’s capital of twins, it has failed to accord the town the status of World Heritage Centre;
“Cognisant that the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) recognises, Sukur Cultural Landscape, Adamawa State, Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove, Osun State, Oban Hills, Cross River State, Oke-Idanre Hill, Ondo State, Ogbunike Caves, Anambra State, Aloklkom Monoliths, Cross River State, Ancient Kano Walts, Kano State, Gashaka-Gumpti National Park, Taraba State, Arochukwu Long Juju Slave Rute, Abia State, and Surame Cultural Landscape/ Sokoto State as the 10 World Heritage Sites in Nigeria but only Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grooove and Sukur Cultural Landscape have been accorded the Status of World Heritage Centers by UNESCO;
“Convinced that if Igbo-Ora is accorded the status of World Heritage Centre, the town shall gain instant international recognition, attract tourists to Nigeria and connects the town to the UNESCO network and partners, and positive media coverage to Nigeria;
“Also convinced that Igbo-Ora, being the World’s Twins Capital, is eminently qualified to be declared a World Heritage Centre, based on the existing UNESCO criteria for identifying such centres.”