4,000 contingents expected as Ekiti hosts national cultural festival – The Sun Nigeria

By Priscilla Ediare, Ado-Ekiti

As Ekiti State hosts this year’s edition of the National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFEST), the State Commissioner for Arts, Culture and Tourism, Professor Razaq Ojo Bakare, revealed that a total of 4,000 contingents from the 36 federation states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) are expected to attend the national event.

The commissioner, who hinted that everything that will be necessary for the successful organization of the cultural festival was in place, said the festival would help showcase the state’s vast tourism opportunities and cultural values, adding that he would also increase his income.

Bakare, who spoke to Ado Ekiti, the state capital at a press conference announcing the hosting of NAFEST 2021, scheduled for November 13-20, described the annual cultural jamboree as a flagship festival in Nigeria. for the unification of the diversity of the country, which he said was conceptualized after the civil war for a strong and lasting national integration.

The theater arts teacher said: “NAFEST has had a huge impact on trade and commerce, it has sparked innovation and creativity and encouraged entrepreneurship. Aside from the fact that the festival promoted autonomy through job creation.

“Between 2010 and 2014, tourism development was at the center of the administration headed by Governor Kayode Fayemi. It was at this time that the idea of ​​a flagship festival that will generate tourist traffic; The Ekiti arts and culture festival was mentioned. With Governor Fayemi’s return in 2018, further developments have taken place.

“Ekiti State is blessed with many things that should normally drive tourist traffic to Ekiti. However, there remains a need to give global attention to these unique endowments before they can start to attract global sponsorship and give potential investors the opportunity to come and see, feel and explore them all, ”said Bakare.

Bakare postulated that the vision of the hosting right granted to the state is for Ekiti to set a new model for other states to follow in hosting future events, saying the state is determined to win all the laurels of the competitions. , to promote his talents.

Speaking about the state’s readiness for the cultural festival, the Commissioner added: “Facilities are being put in place, security is stepped up more than ever despite the fact that Ekiti is one of the most peaceful states in Nigeria. .

“We meet with associations of traders to sell their products at reasonable prices during the time. We are also meeting with the leaders of the transport unions so as not to increase their prices during this period. “

The Commissioner added that the direct impact of the festival cannot be underestimated, stating: “About 1,000 artists are at various locations in Ekiti practicing, hoping to participate in the festival and all those involved. would be paid to motivate them ”.

He assured that the state was devising strong security measures that would ensure the safety of those who will visit Ekiti during the cultural festival.

The commissioner added that many tourism potentials such as Ikogosi Hot Spring, Arinta Waterfall and Fajuyi Park and Museum are now being tapped by private investors to generate more income and a better maintenance culture.

Bakare said: “The government is looking for investors to manage Ogun Onire Groove in Ire Ekiti and other potentials that have not been privatized, it is because individuals can manage better and it will help our internally generated income. “

Darcy J. Skinner

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