FG to identify programmes, events that foster National unity
The minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Muhammed has stressed the resolve of the federal government to identify programmes and events that foster national unity and also promotes the country’s diversity.
Speaking over the weekend at the presentation of ‘Seki’, a dance drama fused with the rich cultural heritage of the Okirika people of River State, directed by Yibo Koko and supported by Heritage Bank, Lai Muhammed stated that Nigeria is blessed with unique culture and people.
The minister noted that the decision of the present administration to create the ministry of culture with responsibility also for tourism and national orientation as a one stop shop is to continue to encourage synergy among the country’s various culture, thus fostering greater unity among the various cultures.
He said events like Seki dance drama presents great opportunities because beyound entertainment, the event is a veritable source of information, education and cultural integration with one of its objective meant to promote Okrika culture, thereby promoting the development of community’s cultural awareness.
He explained further that the event also seeks to unite the Okrika people with other parts of Nigeria as well as other Africans in Diaspora through celebration of culture.
“Such a gathering of people bothered by our cultures which is so diverse has a unifying theme that is our strength and resourcefulness, our courage and pride in our costumes languages and beliefs, our rich flora and fauna as well as our rich mineral resources is worth celebrating because such celebration will only continue to foster unity. We must therefore never overlook any opportunity for us to showcase and celebrate our national cultural heritage”, he said.
The dance drama which was beautiful directed by Koko featured beautiful costumes and different dancing styles, of the Okrika, including their different masquerades and that of their neighbour, the Woji people in Ikwere local government in the state.
The dance was meant to recreate the indigenous response to the struggle in the resistance against foreign culture and promotion on indigenous tradition.
The director of the dance drama explained that one of the masquerade dance and drumer was learnt by the fishermen who during their fishing expedition on the high sea encountered the masquerade displaying their dance pattern and drums, which the fishermen took back to the community to learn for 15 months as part of their dance culture.
The dance drama attracted notable personalities like the managing director of Heritage bank, Dr. Ibie Sekibo, the former managing director of the Niger Delta Development Corporation, NDDC, Mr. Timi Alaibe among other dignitaries.