Better days ahead for cultural promotion in Nigeria — Runsewe
•As states rally support for NCAC new normal plans
There are indications from different quarters that more attention will be giving to cultural tourism following the recent positive approaches states are giving to the sector.
Thanks to the steps taken by stakeholders in the public and private sector who used the COVID-19 lockdown to create awareness through different creative zoom conferences to mobilise stakeholders, create and execute practical cultural tourism agenda that will engender creativity and empowerment of the people.
Walking the talk in this direction is the Director-General of the National Council for Arts and Culture, Chief Segun Runsewe, who through series of innovative zoom meetings held stakeholders in Nigeria and beyond as well as over 25 foreign ambassador spell bound on how to to face the post-COVID-19 new normal challenges.
The zoom discussions were strategic and timely to changing the future of the industry with participants setting a new pace in the ease of doing business to fit into the new normal situation.
In this regards, the zoom series also came handy with agenda setting discussions for the NCAC to redefine the way things are being done as well as chart a new course in its cultural diplomacy and empowerment programmes, which have benefitted many during NAFEST and AFAC.
Runsewe, who has since started putting the outcome of the zoom conference into practical use has also started getting signals from different state governments on areas of partnership.
Recently, the government of Kogi, Plateau, Gombe and Abia states showed their commitment to work with the National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC), by donating offices to the Council to realise its agenda of promoting the states cultural potentialities to the world.
Also the council in its innovative bid to use the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic to its advantage organised a drive-in cultural show that strictly adhered to the protocols of social distance safety procedures yet drive-in participants and guests from the 36 states and Abuja as well as international audience enjoyed the electrifying thrills and performances of the entertainers who were drawn from different cultural groups and states.
Speaking with Travelpulse&MICE, Runsewe explained that “COVID-19 pandemic is a big blow to the world and Nigeria and it came with its own perculiar threat and this so called threat which many see as weakness is what we turned into strength.
“Our approach was strategic, we studied the situation and nature of the pandemic and through the safety guidelines and protocols put in place by the government, we look for ways around it without going against the safety procedure.
“We also tied event around the whole thing, not only to entertain and maintain our normal way of life while we wait for the unfolding of the new normal but at the same time educating Nigerians on staying safe.”
Runsewe again commended the governments of Kogi, Plateau, Gombe and Abia states for donating office accommodations to the Council.
He said the presence of the council’s offices in these states is an opportunity for the NCAC to directly network with the state governments and drive the process of development of Arts and Culture in the states.
He stressed the need for the National Council for Arts and Culture to work with the state governments for the exploration and development of the vast potentials in the culture sector.
Runsewe noted that there is no state of the country without a unique Arts and Cultural manifestations.
He said that if the various states of the federation can work with the council, identify and develop those cultural resources for which they have an advantage, the sector would not only develop rapidly, it will become a major pillar of the nation’s economy.
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