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2019 INAC: Ogun woos visitors to explore tourism assets



Ogun State Cultural Troupe performing to the delight of guests at the International Arts and Crafts Expo held at the Federal Capital Territory Exhibition Pavilion, Abuja on Friday

The Permanent Secretary, Ogun State Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Mrs Salimot Ottun, on Friday urged Nigerians and international tourists to explore the state’s tourism endowments.

Ottun made the call during Ogun Day session at the International Arts and Crafts Expo at the Federal Capital Territory Exhibition Pavilion, Abuja.

The theme of the expo was entitled: “Networking Nigerian Crafts to the world”.

She said that the state was known as the gateway state and it had lots of cultural potential which people could benefit from
According to her, the state is endowed with natural tourists’ attractions like Olumo Rock, the Centenary Hall, Osuuru Water Spring, Alake’s Palace, among others.

“The state has not relented in showcasing its assets to the world.

“ We call on all of you to visit the state and explore our tourists’ sites and also visit our exhibition stand to see the crafts and arts peculiar to the state,” she said.

Also, Mr Oluwasogo Adeyemo, Director, Ogun State Council for Arts and Culture, said aside the tourist sites, the state was also good at massive production of Adire and Kampala fabrics.

He said the state had decided to be creative with these fabrics, using them for all manner of body decoratives like bangles, earrings, bags and all.
He urged all present at the fair to embrace the various cuisines and snacks peculiar with the state such as kokoro, robo, adun, ofada rice and many more.
Ogun State has been at the forefront in the development of nation’s culture and tourism, we are all out again to market the state for global attention and patronage.
“We want you all to visit the state and see what we have in stock for you, our fabrics are soothing to the body, our cuisines are nutritious and tasteful as well.
“We look forward to welcoming you all in Ogun State,” he said.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that the State had various cultural performances and displays to the excitement of  local and international delegates at the event.

Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Wale Ojetimi


Exhibition: ‘Lagos for show’ as veteran artist depicts hussle and bussle of the city



Veteran Artist, Yemi Odetayo, on Friday
said 53 paintings for his expo opening on Saturday in Lagos depicts historical facts as well as the hussle and bussle of the city.
Odetayo told the Nigeria News Agency that some of the works to be on show from Nov. 30 to Dec. 6 at the National Museum, Lagos, dated back to 30 years when he began a career in painting.

He said some of the paintings showcase the culture surrounding the Eyo masquerade of Lagos and various stages in the development of the state.

According to him, the essence is to document some historical facts of the city.

“The theme of the exhibition is “Shades of Life” because it tells of my experiences and those of others around me within Lagos where I reside.

“One of my works showcases the hustling and bustling of Lagos which is one of its most interesting features.

“Shades of Life is a notable collection of some of my selected works over a relatively long time and some selected recent works.

“My experiences over three decades from cartooning, textile, advertising and publishing world have a say in my rendition,” he said.

Odetayo said that some of the paintings also preached some sense of morality, while “Balance Act” projected how youths must be able to balance their academics with other areas of their lives.

He said “Against all Odds” also relayed the dignity in hard work, perseverance to push through in face of challenges.

He urged Nigeians to avail themselves of the opportunity to see the works as they would be taken back memory lane as regards Lagos history and inspired to be morally upright.

Edited & Vetted By: Wale Ojetimi

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South Africa remains open for visitors —  Tourism minister



Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, South Africa Minister of Tourism and Mr Darkey Africa, South Africa Consul General during a session with the Nigerian tourism stakeholders held at Wheatbakers Hotel, Ikoyi, Lagos

Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, South Africa’s Minister of Tourism, on Thursday called on Nigerians to continue visiting the country as the rainbow nation remained open for visitors from across the globe.

Kubayi-Ngubane made the call during an engagement session with Nigerian tourism stakeholders in Lagos against the backdrop of the recent xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

She said that there was great need to advance bilateral relations between Nigeria and South Africa in the creative industry to achieve remarkable success for the two nations and the African continent.

The minister said South Africa regretted the situation, acknowledging that such attacks had happened in the past and the authorities had taken steps to ensure it was not repeated.

“I want you all to know that South Africa is open for visitors from Nigeria and other parts of the world as against insinuations by many that the country is repelling visitors.

“Friendship between South Africa and Nigeria precedes South Africa’s democracy. We didn’t achieve our democracy on our own; we stood on the shoulders of many African nations who fought with us to achieve the democracy we enjoy today.

“To ensure this does not reoccur, the President has appointed a former President of Tanzania and Mozambique as part of the people to find lasting solutions to the problem,” she said.

Kubayi-Ngubane, while acknowledging the visa procurement challenges faced by applicants, said that the country was working on establishing an Electronic Visa application system to be ready for use within the first quarter of 2020.

She said this would fast track the duration for visa procurement.

“We are piloting an E-visa application system to be rolled out early 2020, this means anyone who needs a visa to come to South Africa will be able to do that within the comfort of their homes to apply online.

“If the documents are vetted and certified correct within few days an applicant will get response for visa approval,” she said.

The minister said another problem confronting the country was the presentation of fraudulent documents for visa procurement which delayed the process as huge number of people engaged in this.

She said that South Africa visa fee has not been increased since 2016 which was deliberate to ensure affordability for those that want to visit the country.

Mr Darkey Africa, South Africa’s Consul General in Lagos, said that the country was committed to reuniting the two countries through proper exploration of the tourism industry.

He said the countries must be united in purpose to achieve remarkable growth.

“We want to see movies where Nigerians and South Africans will collaborate to produce, speaking in their unique and distinct accents to tell the world that we have greater things for the future of the two countries and Africa.

“We have enjoyed one another’s friendship for long, we have had cases of countless inter-marriages. This should continue as we explore more together.

“So, there is nothing to be scared of visiting South Africa. It is open for all,” he said.

Edited & Vetted By: Wale Ojetimi

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Ex-Museum curator seeks adequate funding of institution



Mrs Ronke Ashaye, former curator, National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM) Lagos delivering her speech during the cultural fiesta


Mrs Ronke Ashaye, former curator, National Commission for Museums and Monuments, Lagos has urged the Federal Government to ensure proper funding of museums across the country.


Ashaye made the call during a Cultural Fiesta organised at the National Museum, Onikan, Lagos on Wednesday.


The curator said that museums across the country especially the Lagos branch were in dilapidated state due to lack of maintenance and adequate funding.


She advised that the museums should be made to operate independently away from the Federal Ministry of Culture and be converted to centres of historical, archaeological and anthropological studies.


Ashaye said this would help museums function well adding that museums had been neglected over the years.


“There is need for the government to pay greater attention to museums in order to empower it to fulfill its mandate.


“Government has not given the necessary support to this institution and it needs to give culture its pride of place.


“There should be a complete overhaul of this great institution to ensure that they are properly placed on a sound footing and this will require that museums in Nigeria be removed from the supervision of the culture ministry.


“Museums should be turned into centres of historical, archeological and anthropological excellence where they will be effective in regulating, supervising and complementing the efforts of other tertiary and relevant institutions.


“These should be done to enable our museums compete favourably with those in the International community; it is a unique institution that should stand on its own.


“Each time I remember the state of these museums, I weep because this is an institution I gave 35 years of my life from 1978 to 2012,” she said.


Also, Mrs Omotayo Adeboye, Curator, National Museum, Lagos, encouraged everyone to embrace and uphold every aspect of nation’s culture in dressing, language, cuisine, dance and all.


She said the aim of the cultural fiesta was to celebrate nation’s cultural heritage, educate Nigerians on the essence of embracing culture and imbibing the spirit of love and unity.


According to her, the programme was also to preach unity and encourage Nigerians to stand united in the face of cultural diversity that existed.


“We are showcasing nation’s cultural aspects that are put together to celebrate a child at birth into a family unit which is the bedrock of the communities which when put together constitute the ethnic groupings.


“We want everyone to know that we are all one, regardless of our ethnic and cultural differences, let us all live in love and peace,” she said.


Mr Biodun Omolayo, Managing Director, Omolayo Art Gallery, urged museum staff to work tirelessly in ensuring people visit the museum to learn from its huge historical knowledge.


He advised the museum management to expand the scope of the annual cultural fiesta for people to be constantly kept abreast of nation’s rich culture and encourage them to embrace such.


Omolayo urged the museum management to create a point at the airport to bring people into the museum to benefit from its huge historical knowledge.


“This is an avenue to celebrate nation’s cultural values so I urge the museum to encourage and uphold the cultural fiesta to educate the youths and adults more.


“The museum should have a suggestion box in which they can get feedback and suggestions from the staff and public on moving the museum forward,” he said.


Nigeria News Agency reports that the members of staff were adorned in different indigenous attires, beads and other body adornments to depict the various ethnic groups the nation was blessed with.


Edited & Vetted By: Dorcas Jonah/Maureen Atuonwu





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FTAN calls for effective coordination of ministry, tourism associations



The Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN) has called on the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture to ensure effective coordination of agencies in the ministry and its associations.

A communique signed by FTAN Public Relation Officer, Mr Joesef Karim, on Tuesday in Abuja said the coordination would help to reduce the incidence of government and private tourism operators speaking at cross purposes.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that the communique was issued at the end of the 5th Edition of the Nigeria Tourism Investors Forum Exhibition (NTIFE) held in Abuja.

It added that it was incumbent on the Federal and State Government to collaborate with the private sector tourism operators to systematically increase the visibility of Nigeria’s domestic tourism destinations and products.

“In the light of 2013 Supreme Court judgment between Nigeria Tourism Development Cooperation (NTDC) and Lagos State, which stipulated that regulation of Tourism Services are the statutory right of the state governments”.

“FTAN hereby calls on the Federal and state governments’ collaboration with the organised private sector, to setup ‘Tourism Advisory Council’ for Nigeria.

“Such council will work towards the improvement of facilities in tourist destinations and the implementation of a common standard in the quality of tourist /visitor services provided in Nigeria.

“FTAN recommended that membership of the proposed Tourism Advisory Council should comprise of representatives of each of the 36 states governments in Nigeria.

“The representative of the FCT, NTDC and that of NIHOTOUR respectively as well as the organised private sector FTAN member associations, “it said.

The communique noted that Federal Ministry of Information and Culture and National Orientation, together with the state tourism departments should partner with private sectors to embark on massive national public awareness and promotional campaigns.

FTAN demanded that states and federal government tax and revenue generating agencies should coordinate to eliminate or reduce the rampant multiplicity of taxes, levies and other charges paid by hotels and travel companies in Nigeria.

It also implored governments’ tourism parastatals to involve private tourism business operators in the nation in the interest of a nationally integrated tourism development.

FTAN, therefore, appealed to government to commit more resources in constructing and repairing of inter and intra state roads, especially those leading to tourist sites.

“The cardinal principle of government is to serve the citizens and national interest.

“Nigeria tourism officials hardly ever wait to receive feedback from the tourism industry operators at a private sector tourism event.

“It is, therefore, no surprise that most Nigerian government tourism policies and programmes are characteristically disconnected from the real needs of Nigerian tourism investors, operators and tourists.

“In the future, FTAN will love to see the Minister of Information Culture and Tourism at the annual event of NTIFE.

“Attendance at such Nigerian tourism forum should be a matter of priority and national duty to tourism administration.

“FTAN is the only umbrella body for the organised tourism private sector in Nigeria, it comprises of the largest investors, operators and promoters,” it said.

The 5th edition of NTIFE was held in Abuja with the theme : An Insight into Legal Framework of Tourism’ in Nigeria” was organised by FTAN.( NAN)

Edited & Vetted By: Dorcas Jonah/Ifeyinwa Omowole

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Stakeholders commend NCAC for successful hosting of INAC



Venue of the 12th International Arts and Crafts Expo (INAC) at the Federal Capital Territory Exhibition Pavilion, Abuja

Some tourism and culture stakeholders have commended the National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC) for successfully hosting the 12th International Arts and Crafts Expo (INAC).


They gave the commendations in separate interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Abuja at the end of 2019 INAC.


The expo which began Nov. 20 and ended on Nov. 24, at the Federal Capital Territory Exhibition Pavilion, Abuja had a theme entitled: “Networking Nigerian Crafts to the World.”


The stakeholders said the annual expo had been a veritable platform for global unity and cohesion, adding that it should be sustained.


Mr Sayyed Mohammed-Azimi, Cultural Consular, Iran Embassy in Abuja said that the platform was a beautiful one, for the country to see how Nigeria and Iran could collaborate in improving their arts and crafts.


Mohammed-Azimi, commending the organisers of the fair, said that in spite the economic situation of the country, the fair came out successful.


He said that the platform had challenged countries on areas they needed to improve in their arts and crafts, having learnt from countries that were doing better.


The consular urged countries to come with improved quality of their arts and crafts next edition of the fair so that people could learn more.


”I like to appreciate NCAC for this platform and for holding this edition, in spite challenges.


”This has created thirst in most countries to be more creative, just like for my country, Iran.


”We will be improving on our arts, based on what we have learnt so far from Nigeria and other countries,” he said.


Mr Ikechi Uko, organiser of AKWAABA African Travel and Tourism Marketa also commended the organiser of the event for engaging the international communities in marketing nation’s products in the creative industry.


He said this had given Nigeria leverage over other countries, adding that citizens of other countries were more aware of Nigerian arts and crafts.


”I have always believed in engaging the international community for our products to be well marketed and that is what we do in AKWAABA,” he said.


Mr Oluwaseye Adeyemo, Executive Director, Ogun State Council for Arts and Culture said that NCAC should be commended because it had improved tremendously on the annual fair.


He said with the huge success recorded, there was room for improvement on certain areas of the organisation like focusing on adequate publicity for the fair in subsequent years.


Adeyemo also urged other states that did not participate to avail themselves of the opportunity next year, assuring them that  lots of business opportunities abound in the fair.


”The fair has been quite interesting and educating, I give kudos to the organisers, international delegates and states present who had worked tirelessly to ensure the fair comes out beautifully.


”I like to call on other countries and states not present to watch out for next edition, lots of business opportunities could be tapped here for the unemployed.


”It is a platform to network for business ideas, an avenue to draw inspiration and spur creativity,” he said.


Adeyemo said that such a platform was needed to ensure citizens of different countries come to mingle for business purposes.


Nigeria News Agency reports that over 30 countries and 18 states participated in the fair with lots of activities ranging from free skills acquisition, free medical check-up, investment forum, states and countries days.


Edited & Vetted By: Dada Ahmed

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Support Nigeria culture, tradition to promote peace – Okorocha



Sen. Rochas Okorocha , Chairman, Senate Committee on Culture and Tourism on Sunday in Abuja called for more support on the nation’s culture and tradition.

Okorocha made the call at the closing ceremony of 2019 International Arts and Crafts (INAC) expo with the theme “Networking Nigeria Crafts to the world”.

He said that culture was a tool that brought nations together and thereby advocated for more synergy between and among countries.

Okorocha, who was also the Chairman of the occasion, noted that Nigeria had the best culture and tradition saying that it was important to harness its potentials.

According to him, culture and tourism will soon become the bedrock of the nation’s economic growth in place of oil.

“The best gift God gave us is our culture and tradition and we have the best culture and tradition and very soon the world will hear us.

“Our culture is our pride and at the mention of culture all nations gather and we need more of this gathering to promote peace in Nigeria.

“Our music have taken centre stage and so shall our tourism and culture,” he said.

He appreciated the international community for their support and extension of friendship.

The former Imo governor commended Otunba Olusegun Runsewe, the Director General, National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC) for leading in the promotion of arts and culture and for a successful expo.

Earlier, Dame Pauline Tallen, Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development said that more networking would showcase the nation’s beautiful culture globally.

Tallen, who was the mother of the day, acknowledged that the expo was an avenue to strengthen the synergy between Nigeria and international community.

According to her, the synergy between Nigeria and international communities that participated in the expo is commendable.

She however, believed that the synergy would be strengthened and bonded through culture.

The minister also canvassed for more participation from other international communities and states.

Tallen also congratulated the DG NCAC for organising the expo and also showcasing the country’s heritage globally.

“I am proud to be a Nigerian and let the peace we preach go round the world and let peace go round the world,” she added.

Mr Idris Musa, Emir of Jiwa said the nation was greatly enriched with culture and tradition and advocated for posterity.

“Culture is what brings peace and nations together and because of peace everybody is seated here today without fear.

“We are trying our best to keep our culture and tradition and our dressing should showcase who we are,” he advised.

In his remarks, the DG, NCAC, Otunba Runsewe, appreciated the international community present at the expo.

He described the just concluded expo as a `place of networking’ and also a communication and interactive ground with the international community without taking a flight.

“We used this expo to tell the world that Nigeria is a place to be, come see our culture which is our pride.

“This is marking the second time we are launching the cultural diplomacy for peace and it is a new level to tell the world that our nation is interested in the peace of the world,” he added.

The DG, therefore, appreciated the countries and states that participated in the expo and also advocated for more participation in the next edition.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that about 18 states and over 30 countries participated in the just concluded 2019 INAC expo.

NAN also reports that the organizers trained over 1,000 women on skill acquisition and 200 medicated glasses were also given as part of the organisation’s social responsibility.

Edited & Vetted By: Maureen Atuonwu


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