… Festival will promote unity, rich culture – Amosun
Performance troupes and drummers from the United States of America, Haiti, and nine other countries have expressed interest to participate at the second edition of the African Drums Festival this April in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital in Southwest Nigeria.
Apart from Cuba which would grace the festival as an observer, over 12 Nigerian States have also confirmed readiness to participate.
These were made known to journalists on Tuesday by the Secretary to the Government of Ogun State, Mr Taiwo Adeoluwa, during a World press briefing about the festival at the June 12 Cultural Centre, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Adeoluwa said the State would be spending an amount less than N50 million on the Festival.
The Logo of this year’s African Drums Festival with the theme, “Reviving our Culture in Drums,” was unveiled by Governor Ibikunle Amosun, who was represented by his Deputy, Princess Yetunde Onanuga.
The Festival is been organised by the State government.
Adeoluwa cited Ghana, Togo, Benin Republic, Congo Brazzaville and Zimbabwe as some of the African countries that would attend the event.
He explained that the Festival would be both participatory and competitive, saying those who want to compete would opportunity to do so while those who don’t, would enjoy themselves.
“It will cost the State so little, what we are spending is under N50 million and it is not about the size of the budget. We are using direct labour and we are sourcing for everything locally, we are also leveraging on our friends and supporters who are partnering with us,” he said.
According to him, the 2017 edition has been expanded to take care of troupes from private and Non – Governmental Organisations (NGOs).
Before unveiling the festival’s logo, the State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, said the festival would promote unity and showcase the rich cultural heritage of the African continent as well as put the State on the world map.
Amosun said: “the unique aspect of the festival was the unveiling of the world tallest drum last year. It (festival) received greater acceptance, and it has opened doors for our brothers and sisters from other African countries. It is one way of promoting unity in the continent.”
The maiden edition of it kicked off in Abeokuta on April 19, 2016 amid glamour as drummers from every part of the country graced the festival.
While it lasted, the tallest drum in the country, standing at about 16ft was unveiled by the host Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun and witnessed by the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi and his wife, the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adetona Gbadebo, Senator Momora, representative of the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed and the Director General, Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation, Mrs. Sally Mbanefo.