2019 INAC: China, Bangladesh seek cultural exchange programmes with Nigeria



The Representatives of China and Bangladesh at the ongoing International Arts and Crafts Expo (INAC) on Wednesday in Abuja said they were interested in some cultural exchange programmes with Nigeria and other countries present.

The expo held at the FCT Exhibition Pavilion with the theme: “Networking Nigerian Crafts to the World”.

The representatives of the countries told the Nigeria News Agency that the exchange programme envisaged would be on teaching Nigerians most of their arts and crafts while they learn the same from Nigerians.

According to them, this will further foster unity and harmony among the countries and that INAC was the best platform to perfect such mutual interest.

Mr Wang Guiping, First Secretary of Culture, Chinese Embassy, said the country would like to teach Nigerians and other countries at the fair most of the arts and crafts peculiar to their country.

He listed most of the arts as: Terracotta, Ceramics, Paintings, Martial Arts and more.

According to him, this will broaden the knowledge of individuals from the both countries on arts and crafts, urging interested individuals to visit the China stand.

“As many people that will be interested in this, they will be given audience even after the fair at the Chinese Embassy and special classes will be organised for them.

“We are also interested in people learning our language and culture,” he said.

Mr Ahmed Ullah, Director, Bangladesh Folk Arts and Crafts Foundation, said that the country was prepared to train Nigerians and other countries’ delegates on how to make local fabric peculiar to Bangladesh.

He said that the fabric was referred to as “Nakshi Kathe” which were processed through wooden looms to make bedsheet and duvet.

He noted that it would take three months for an individual to learn, adding that a woman had been stationed at the Bangladesh tent to train people after which arrangement would be made to continue after the expo.

“We are here to promote Nigerian arts and crafts, likewise ours, we want people to explore our arts and crafts, especially the making of our local fabric.

“We have come with the loom with which we can train interested persons in learning how to make the fabric.

“Nigerians can use this fabric because they are light and soothing to the body.

“We also have other home decorations locally made in the country which could be learnt by Nigerians and other countries,” he said.

(Edited by Dorcas Jonah/Peter Ejiofor (NAN))


Practitioner stresses professionalism in hospitality industry



A practitioner in hospitality sector, Mr Ibrahim Baba, has called on those dreaming making career in the industry to acquire skills that would make them professionals in order to move it forward.

Buba, who is Head of Hospitality, National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), made the call in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency on Wednesday in Abuja.

He said on such persons could leverage on the opportunity of the institute to leverage of the various courses being run by institute to acquire the requisite knowledge to perform better and grow the industry.

NIHOTOUR runs various courses ranging from post graduate diploma in hospitality management to innovative diplomas and various certificates in hospitality.

The idea is to see how we can effectively bridge the gap between those that belong and those that do no to belong.

Research has shown that there are people whose specialisation is not really hospitality, but they find themselves working in the industry.

They can professionalise in the hospitality industry by enrolling in the post graduate programme in NIHOTOUR.

At the end of their programme, they must have acquired enough skills to fit into the industry,’’ he said.

He said that the innovative diploma was designed to impact practical knowledge on the students.

“We understand that players in the industry require technical skills and the curriculum is focused more on practical.

Edited by: Dada Ahmed

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FG to establish community museums to boost tourism – Lai Mohammed



The Federal Government has announced plans to establish community museums as part of efforts to ensure that local communities benefit from tourism.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, announced the plan on Thursday at the ongoing 4th World World Conference on Tourism and Culture in Kyoto, Japan.

A statement on the event was made available to newsmen in Abuja by Mr. Segun Adeyemi,

Special Assistant to the President (Media) Office of the Minister of Information and Culture

”In Nigeria, we observed that tourists stay in the big cities when they visit.

‘They visit the museums in the cities where objects gotten from different parts, including the rural areas, are displayed but they hardly go to the rural areas.

”To encourage tourists to visit the rural areas where money spent is quickly reflected in the local economy, we are trying to establish community museums,” the minister said.

According to Mohammed, the government will, in particular, encourage the establishment of palace museums.

”Parts of ancient residencies of traditional rulers and important chiefs are being turned to museums.

‘Thus, we are not limiting museums to the big cities. Money spent by tourists while visiting these rustic places stay longer in these areas.

Lamido Adamawa now has the Fombina Palace museum, just like the Emir of Potiskum has palace museum,” he said.

The Minister said the government, through high-level representation, training of festival managers and the provision of enabling environment, is supporting and promoting festivals and cultural tourism all over the country.

He said the programme would ultimately ensure that local communities benefitted.

The minister said that a national calendar of festivals would soon be unveiled to assist tourists who are coming to Nigeria in planning their visits.

He said that Nigeria has continued to leverage on the areas in which it enjoys comparative advantage, citing music, movies and fashion as some of such areas.

Mohammed served as one of the panellists at the Ministerial Segment of the conference, dedicated to discussing and exchanging policies and government models impacting the future of cultural tourism.

Edited by: Felix Ajide

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Expert harps on improving tourism sector



Mr Edwin Enenta, a tourism expert, has urged the Federal government to show more commitment to improve the tourism sector in order to tap inherent benefits from it.

Enenta, Head of Travel and Tourism Department, National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), Abuja who gave the advice in an interview with Nigeria News Agency on Wednesday in Abuja described tourism as a goldmine waiting to be tapped.

Tourism is a multifaceted and multidimensional activity. It is not just about fun; it is business and government should look at it as business.

It makes more money than most other industries.

Saudi Arabia has more oil than Nigeria, but what Saudi gets from “religious tourism“ is unquantifiable.

I want us to join hands to sell tourism because oil is finishing, and even where there is oil, there is usually crisis,’’ he said.

According to him, Nigeria is rich in tourist destination that can yield good return on investment.

Every local government area you go in Nigeria, there is an investible tourist potential and tourism is consumed at source.

Those sites, like beaches cannot be moved to other location, So, the local communities will always benefit.

It is the only viable alternative to oil and government should place more priority on tourism.

“ Countries like Kenya, Gambia are earning immense benefits from tourism, but Nigeria is even more endowed than these countries.’’

Ementa said that the mandate of NIHOTOUR was to raise manpower for the industry and make it more attractive.

The mandate of the institute is to raise manpower in the hospitality and tourism industry, to fill the gap.

The bane of the industry is lack of adequate manpower. In many hotels, you do not find career professionals. People usually start up with family and friends.

The burden is on us to sell tourism. Tourism, now, is the biggest employer of labour going by UN statistics,’’ he said.

He said that tourism might not be very quick on investment but overtime, it would overtake other businesses.

“ Nigeria is so endowed in tourism, looking at the cultural diversity and the natural environment.’’

Edited by: Dada Ahmed

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Artist explores animal kingdom setting to sensitise Nigerians on imbibing good morals



A Nigerian artist, Phillip Nzekwe, on Wednesday said that he used animals as figurative expressions in his art exhibition to sensitise viewers on imbibing good morals.


Nzekwe spoke to the Nigeria News Agency at the ongoing weeklong exhibition which started on Dec. 7 and would end on Dec. 14 in Lagos.


NAN reports that the exhibition divided into two series titled: `The Lazy Dog; Windows of the Soul and Curious Mind’ has `Raw Intuition’ as its theme.


The artist said that the work was as a result of his fascination for nature, animals, plants, architecture and colours.


He said that the dog figures were used to convey messages that would help people abide by laws and order, develop courage to face life challenges and avoid insecurity.


He said that another segment of the exhibition was to sensitise parents to discover the potential of their children early through close examination.


I use art to highlight issues that affect my daily life as an African. I know that artworks are to draw attention of the public to societal problems.


My works investigate the complex of human behavioural pattern emanating from the need to express their identities with the world.


Dogs and children are a case study for my intuitive study presented from my state of mind,” he said.


Nzekwe said that his artworks are made from concrete, wood fibre and other natural materials which would fascinate viewers.


He said that one of his works titled: “Two Captains in a Boat” expressed the insecurity faced by people in authority by the emergence of others.


The artist advised people to face challenges of life regardless of what it threw at them.


He urged parents to create adequate time for their children, read their feelings and discover their talents early in life in order to raise a complete child.


He called on Nigerians to visit the museum, get entertained and be educated about the exhibition and various works of art deposited there by several artists.


Edited by: Chinyere Bassey/Peter Dada



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Winner of Best Nigerian Tour Guide advises on research, development



The winner of Best Nigerian Tour Guide, Mr Anago Osho, on Tuesday urged tour guides in the country to

embrace  research and development to be able to relay unique stories of the nation to tourists.

Osho gave this advice in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Lagos.

According to him, Nigerian tour guides should be committed to research, and  develop themselves to carry out their duties well.

He also urged governments  to train tour guides, who he described as ambassadors because of their  vital roles in attracting tourists.

“I will advise my colleagues to engage in constant research for their personal development to be able to relay history as it is.

“ Government at all levels should also look into training of tour guides on the history of their localities and ethics.

“This will enable them to woo more tourists into the country,” he said.

Osho, also President, West African Tour Guide Association, Nigeria Chapter, said that he would ensure exposure of more Nigerian tour guides to international trainings.

He said this would  help to ensure that Nigerian tour guides were equipped with detailed information as regards tour guiding.

According to him, the training is highly needed now that  Nigeria is exploring more means of income generation through the tourism industry.

“I will be making  impacts in ensuring that more Nigerian tour guides are exposed to International trainings to further equip them with necessary information they need to excel and place Nigeria on the tourism global map.

“I have received several commendations locally and Internationally but the award has only come to motivate me more to work harder in ensuring that the tourism industry is improved on,” he said.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that Osho was awarded the best Nigerian tour guide by the Nigerian Travel Week Balearica awards (Nigeria Tourism Awards) on Nov, 22.

Osho, who had authored three books, `Lekeleke’, `How the Slave Trade Began’ and `The History of Seriki Williams Abass of Badagry’ said his fourth book will come out in 2020.

Edited by: Chidinma Agu/Ijeoma Popoola

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