Ogun to host National Drum Festival
• Govt to promote Nigeria’s rich culture
The Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr. Lai Mohammed said yesterday that his Ministry would spare no effort in promoting and showcasing Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage and values to the world.
The Minister who spoke in Abeokuta while launching and unveiling the logo of the maiden edition of the “National Drums Festival” to be hosted by Ogun State, stated that the festival was in line with the ministry’s efforts, of not only preserving the cultural heritage of the country, but also to foster unity among the people.
The National Drums Festival, first of its kind to be staged by the State is scheduled to hold between Tuesday, April 19 and Friday, April 22.
The 36 States, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), according to the Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Muyiwa Oladipo would participate in the four-day event saying the festival is meant to showcase the country’s rich culture and values by the various ethnic groups in the country. It is also aimed at uniting the people.
The Minister revealed that on assumption of office, the Ministry embarked on extensive research aimed at ensuring that traditional musical instrument does not go into extinction, disclosing that Ogun State was one of the States in the country blessed with abundant traditional musical instruments.
Mohammed who was represented by the Director of Entertainment and Creative Services, Miss Grace Isu Gekpe challenged the State to make the festival a force to reckon with among other festivals in the country. He would like it to be at par with the famous annual Calabar Festival in terms of glamour and elegance “and if possible surpass it.”
Outlining some of the benefits of the festival, Mohammed said that it would attract tourists from all over the world to the State as well as boost the Hospitality business in the State.
His words “It is gladden that Ogun State is doing what the Ministry likes. It is a good platform to showcase our cultural heritage and traditional musical instrument to the world.”
He said during the festival, the tallest drum in the world, measuring about 14-feet would be unveiled, disclosing that all the 36 States, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) would participate in the festival.
The State Deputy Governor, Mrs. Yetunde Onanuga expressed the view that the festival would boost the economy of the State.
Onanuga said the festival would also afford local artisans the opportunity to showcase their expertise and products, describing the festival as an avenue to promote the cultural heritage and the unity of Nigerians.
The Culture Commissioner, Oladipo in his closing remarks said the festival was aimed at enhancing tourism opportunities and to create employment opportunities for the people.