In its effort to consolidate on the different creative niche markets that abound in the state to drive tourism traffic and revenue like never before, the Lagos State government has unveiled Greater Lagos Fiesta to stoke up activities of the state.
The 31-day festival tagged ‘Lagos Rocks’, will feature different trends and colours of the fast-growing entertainment, creative and tourism hub of Africa.
This year’s edition will kick off on December 1 with an opening ceremony at the Mobolaji Johnson Arena, Onikan.
The cycling competition will hold on December 5, while the photography and fashion contests will be held on December 7 and 10.
The Xmas Souk Village featuring children’s corner, book exhibition, food, fashion and Santa’s Grotto, will open in Lagos’s five divisions of Ikorodu, Ikeja, Badagry, Lagos Island and Epe on December 18.
The Marina Experience, showcasing the state’s water treasures, will hold on December 26. There will then be four unbroken days of quality music from A-list musicians and upcoming ones across the five divisions from December 27 to 30.
The official closing will take place at Eko Atlantic on December 31.
Speaking during the unveiling, the governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, noted that the month-long event would help the state’s recovery efforts after the devastations of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He reemphasised that the event would feature activities including cycling, photography and fashion competitions, the Xmas Souk Village, traditional games, and the popular Greater Lagos Concerts featuring A-list artistes in all five divisions of the state.
Mr. Sanwo-Olu, represented by his deputy, Obafemi Hamzat, explained that the pandemic affected the three critical pillars of society. “Society relies on three tripods: economy, health and well-being and security of lives and property. COVID-19 has affected all the three, as well as nightlife; but this edition of the Greater Lagos Fiesta, which activities speakers have highlighted for you, will help reflate our economy.”
The Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf, explained that the 2020 edition did not hold because the Lagos State government prioritised public health and safety, but this year’s edition would be with a “blend of uniqueness and touch of innovation and creativity.”
She added that ‘Lagos Rocks’ would be “an immersive experience of entertainment like never been seen before in Nigeria.
The commissioner also said that the government “will be using the Greater Lagos Fiesta to further transform Lagos into a major African tourism and entertainment hub by exploring and promoting the potentials that abound in the state as well as integrating the trending entertainment and art industry as a viable platform to attract visitors and create job opportunities.”
She disclosed that only vaccinated persons against COVID-19 would be allowed into the Fiesta’s venues and assured of adequate security and emergency services.
Also highlighting the Fiesta’s importance, the Special Adviser to Governor Sanwo-Olu on Tourism, Arts and Culture, Solomon Bonu, said it affirms his principal’s commitment to tourism development.
“The Greater Lagos Fiesta 2021 is a reflection of Governor Sanwo-Olu’s love for tourism and entertainment and fervent belief in the ability of the ministry to organise an event that would portray the standard Lagos has been known for over the years,” he said.