When Lagos takes Notting Hill Carnival by storm with #LoveLagosWeekend
The Notting Hill Carnival this year was a different ball game as the sight and sound of Lagos, dominated the popular London Carnival with the #LoveLagosWeekend campaign.
Unlike the previous years, the popular Nigerian Corner on Adelaja Street at the Europe’s biggest and world second biggest carnival, transform to Lagos Corner courtesy of the Lagos branding campaign by the state government, which took the city of London by storm.
Across the United Kingdom, friends and lovers of the state converged on the Nigerian Corner, to celebrate Lagos brand during the 50th edition of the carnival and market what the state has been able to achieve under the administration of Akinwunmi Ambode.
The #LoveLagosWeekend started on Saturday morning with a town hall meeting and media parley addressed by top officials of the state government led by Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Steve Ayorinde in company of the Special Adviser to the governor on Arts and Culture, Adebimpe Akinsola and Special Adviser to the governor on Office of Overseas Affairs and Investment Prof Ademola Abass at Woburn House Conference Centre in central London.
It continued in the evening with comedy at the Discovery Centre in Barking, Essex with ‘iLaff with MC Abbey’ while comedians Gordons, Seyi Brown, Buchi, EmmaOhMaGod, and Kenny Blaq among others thrilled guests. There was musical performance by singer Nikki Laoye and saxophonist, Mike Aremu.
The laughter continued the next day as guests joined the Okombo master, Julius Agwu for the 11th edition of his ‘Crack Ya Ribs’. With Osinachi crooner, Humblesmith, as the headline musical act, the fun and dancing continued late into the night.
According to the promoter of the Lagos Corner, Ayo Sonaiya, “We are happy that at a time that Lagos State is counting down to its 50th anniversary, the administration of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode is using the huge platform of Notting Hill Carnival, which is also celebrating its 50th edition this year to reach out to millions of Nigerians and Lagosians in particular about the emerging powerful brand that Lagos has become in the areas of arts and entertainment, and in connecting with the Diaspora about the great things being recorded in Lagos.”
The Lagos Corner provided a veritable platform for performing artistes from Lagos State to showcase their talents and further give verve to brand Lagos as the home of creativity.
The Love Lagos Weekend, according to Ayorinde, is a three-day event designed to communicate the Lagos tourism brand initiative to the world. “The master brand for Lagos tourism initiative is One Lagos, which speaks to the oneness, multicultural nature and unity in diversity of the state. It’s an initiative that has taken shape in the state. But the slogan for that brand initiative is Love Lagos, which is our way of urging the world to take note and connect with us.”
He added that the Love Lagos Weekend in London was also in sync with the government’s plan to celebrate Lagos on the 27th day of every month till May 27, 2017 when Lagos will celebrate its 50th anniversary as a state.
“London and Lagos have a long rich history and choosing to start the global brand awareness campaign for Lagos in London is the right thing to do given the huge number of Lagosians and Friends of Lagos that reside and work there,” Ayorinde stated.
He further explained that the Love Lagos Weekend was also geared towards selling the state and uniting lovers of Lagos in the diaspora, adding that other objectives of the campaign are to create awareness on the new Lagos State administration, provide platform for interaction with Lagos State indigenes and lovers of Lagos State in the Diaspora and further market the state to potential investors and partners that can contribute towards the Lagos@50 celebrations.
Guests spotted in the VIP section of the Lagos Corner include rain maker, Majek Fashek, Gbenga Adeyinka, Yeni Kuti, Maleek Berry, Seyi Brown, Koker, Actress Tayo Sobola, Yaw, DJ Abass, Sammy Okposo, Sautisol, and Sope Olajide.