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Runsewe hails Governor Fayemi over cultural strides 

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The Director-General, National Council of Arts and Culture, Otunba Olusegun Runsewe has commended the Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi for his keen interest at the promotion of culture and arts in the state

The DG described Governor Fayemi as “one of the greatest cultural assets in Nigeria who is stoking the arts and cultural sector for the overall development of Ekiti State and its wonderful homogenous indigenes “

Otunba Runsewe made this observation about Governor Fayemi   after the Director-General, Ekiti – State Council for Arts and Culture, Ambassador Wale Ojo Lanre highlighted  the cultural strides  in Ekiti State  at the 49th National Stakeholders  Meeting on the National Festival of Arts and Culture ( NAFEST) held in Benin, Edo State last week.

Otunba Runsewe declared “I am not surprised about the stories of good news emanating from Ekiti State because Governor Fayemi is not only a brilliant and cosmopolitan personality who understands the import of culture as the base for value restoration, moral rectification and attitude shaping but an exceptional human being who is determined to employ arts and culture to drive commerce, investment and investors to the state. And going by the testimonies and reports from Ekiti State   one is convinced that Ekiti State which has come back to take its front-row position in the cultural agenda of Nigeria “

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Ambassador Ojo – Lanre who attended the meeting with two directors of the Council, Messer Banji Adelusi, (Culture) and Adeoye Adewuyi, ( Arts), has briefed the body of the cultural strides being made by Governor Fayemi at enhancing the cultural potentialities of the state

“I am bold to tell this distinguished gathering of  cultural administrators of 36 states of the Federation that  Governor Kayode Fayemi has brought to life the hitherto lifeless, moribund , sterile  and dead Arts and Cultural sector  thus empowering  it as one of the essential agents of value restoration and reorientation “

Ojo – Lanre, also disclosed that the state has commenced the implementation of the Ekiti State Council for Arts and Culture 2012 Law which was enacted   by Governor Fayemi during his first tenure and which was relegated and put into the cooler by the previous government.

He revealed that Ekiti State also, via the Law has legally established Council for Arts and Culture which has been mobilized and reinforced to promote, enhance and market the cultural ingredients, values, arts, crafts and heritage sites from being sources of entertainment but of empowerment, revenue generation and employment creation.

Ojo – Lanre  hinted that within the last two months of inaugurating the Council, Governor Fayemi has empowered   it to attend the 2019 Drum Festival in Abeokuta, rebranded the State Standing Cultural Troupe, accelerating the work on the Cultural and the civic centre, approved the hosting of Stakeholder Forum and  Creative workshop, stoking of indigenous industry clusters , ensured the harmonisation, the unification  of the various hitherto disorganised sectoral association players  and rejuvenation of cultural festivals like Ogun, Oladunwo in Okemesi, Ekiti Parapo War Festival and institutionalization of culture and arts as the fulcrum of value reorientation

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 He pointed out that one of the signs that Governor Fayemi is doing well in the state was the presence and attendance of the Ekiti delegate at the Pre NAFEST Technical Forum being held in Edo State.

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Ekiti moves to rebrand Ere  Ayo Arin for global  acceptability 

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The Ekiti state government through its Council for Arts and Culture is set to rebrand Ere  Ayo Arin for cultural visibility, public embracement  and global  acceptability 

The Director-General, Ekiti State Council for Arts and Culture, Ambassador Wale Ojo -Lanre made this revelation on Thursday  after a presentation of Ere Ayo  Arin by members of staff of the Council at the Ekiti State Cultural Centre, Ado Ekiti, the state capital.

Ambassador Ojo – Lanre explained that Ere Ayo  Arin is one of the notable traditional games and entertainment values which are the cultural  heritage of  Ekiti and Yoruba land but one which is trending fast into the abyss of forgetfulness and extinction

Speaking further, he disclosed that the Council embarked on the rebranding of Ere Ayo  Arin in line with the cultural  vision of Dr Kayode Fayemi which tasked the Council to rejuvenate and resuscitate notable traditional games  of Yoruba which are agents of values building and moulders of growth ethics but which are  now  decreasing in popularity and visibility

Ambassador Ojo – Lanre added that  Ere Ayo Arin is not just only a recreational and entertainment act but a game which hone and sharpens  the intelligence board, tasks the mental plate and stokes the goal getting  skills of players while it injects excitement, cultivates active participation of the spectators and the audience

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He revealed that it is one game which grinds the players’ ability to plan, calculate, strategise, target and achieve a set goal, which are all the growth valves which a typical human being needs to accomplish his vision on Earth. ,

Ambassador Ojo – Lanre revealed that research and investigation so far conducted showed that a large percentage of our youths has never watched  Ere Ayo  Arin being played in its cultural form as well as not even seen the seed being used.

He  said he was not surprised when three out of five students on an internship with the Council revealed that they have never watched or played neither have they set their eyes on the seed used in playing the game

Ambassador Ojo – Lanre disclosed that Ere Ayo  Arin would be formally presented and performed in Ado Ekiti before being taken on a tour of other local government councils in the state.

He revealed that  Ere Ayo Arin tour would be tailored according to the cultural vision of Dr Fayemi which targets the pupils, secondary school students and the youths most of who are in the oblivion of these pristine traditional games which equip and launder the brain for effective functioning in day to day engagement in life.

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Creating Separate Arts, Culture and Tourism Ministry: Fayemi Set The Pace In Ekiti | By Olaoluwa Mimiola

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The role of tourism in enhancing inclusive economic growth and development of both advanced and emerging economies cannot be overemphasized. Tourism stimulates economic growth by generating income, employment, investments, exports and it serves as a catalyst for socio-economic development.

In fact, tourism has been included as a target in goals 8, 12 and 14 of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDGs). Despite the increasing and unpredictable shocks from terrorist attacks and political instability, health pandemics and natural disasters, Travel and tourism continued to show it’s resilience in 2016 and accounted for about 30% of total global service exports.

Investment in tourism is particularly important for Nigeria due to dwindling government revenue and economic contraction as a result of the drastic fall in crude oil prices, and with the vision to be rated among the top 20 economies of the world today by 2020. Hence, tourism industry press t’s an alternative source of revenue for the government and job opportunities for the youthful population.

The landscape of Nigerian is, no doubt, dotted with innumerable enviable tourism potentials, both natural and man-made. But, the country could be said to be lagging behind in tourism promotion and development, in spite of the many tourism potentialities, both in material and human resources. This has continued to give stakeholders in the industry serious concerns.

Stakeholders in the industry including the press, have suggested a legal framework and creation of a separate Culture and Tourism Ministry, to improve accelerate development in the Nigerian Tourism industry. As at the time of publishing this piece, Tourism is buried in the Information and Culture Ministry, which Alhaji Lai Mohammed heads.

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In the bid to ensure a favourable legal framework for the Nigerian Tourism industry, was the Bill for an Act on the Nigerian Tourism Development Authority (NTDA) Act Cap N137 LFN, 2004 (Repeal and Enactment) Bill, 2017 (AN.429) on Thursday, August 17, 2017, on Conference Hall 022, Senate Building (New Wing), National Assembly complex. The bill successfully passed through three hearings by the Senate, hence the approval of the 8th Legislative arm of government, headed by Senator Bukola Saraki, to sequester the Tourism Ministry.

However, President Muhammadu Buhari conveyed to the Senate his decision to withhold assent to the Nigeria Tourism Development Authority (NTDA), among other 30 bills he rejected in his first term.

In a letter read by the then Senate President, Bukola Saraki, at plenary the President gave reasons for withholding assent to the bill.

Buhari said section 14(d), section 30(2d) of the Nigeria Tourism Development Authority (Repeal and re-enactment) bill contradicts section 4 (1-3) and paragraph 60 (d) of the second schedule of Nigeria’s Constitution.

Section 30 of the bill proposing to levy a tourism fee on all inbound international travellers, a tourism levy on all outbound travellers and a tourism departure contribution fee of 1 per cent per hotel room rate.

“Such a flat fee has been fixed by the authority and a corporate tourism development levy of 1 per cent to be charged on the revenue of banks, telecommunications and other corporate entities. This will be inimical to the growth of the tourism and hospitality industry in Nigeria and constitute an additional burden on the tourism business,” the letter reads.

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Director-General, Ekiti State Council for Arts and Culture, Ambassador Wale Ojo-Lanre, prior his appointment, in the one-man campaign to some Media Houses in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital charged President Buhari to create a separate ministry for Culture and Tourism.

The efforts yielded no positive result at the federal level. In fact, no Governor in Nigeria has seen the need for a separate Ministry for Culture and Tourism.

But, Ekiti State Governor, Dr John Kayode Fayemi, on Wednesday, December 11, 2019, took the giant and unprecedented step of creating a separate ministry for Arts, Culture and Tourism.

He made the pronunciation at the opening ceremony of the 2019 edition of the Ekiti State Festival of Arts and Culture (EKIFEST), by upgrading the state’s Council for Arts and Culture to the Ministry of Arts, Culture andTourism.

Fayemi also disclosed the determination of his administration to increase its investment and exploits in the arts and culture sector for the economic prosperity of the state and its citizens.

This singular, bold and laudable act of Governor Fayemi would no doubt speed up the development of Tourism in Ekiti State, boosting the state’s economy, creating wealth for her people and jobs for the youths, and exposing the state to the world for better patronage.

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The Nigerian Tourism industry would, no doubt, develope at a faster pace if President Muhammadu Buhari could reason with the rightly-thinking stakeholders in the Tourism industry and borrow a leaf from other countries that are doing well in the industry, and sequester the Tourism Ministry.

Let Governors of another state in the country emulate Governor Fayemi and sequester the Culture and Tourism Ministry for faster and better development of the industry, which will no doubt better than lots of the states and the people therein.

 

 

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Fayemi flags off EKIFEST, upgrades Bureau of Arts and Culture to a Ministry

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L-R: Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi; his wife and chairperson, Planning Committee 2019 EKIFEST, Erelu Bisi Fayemi; Director-General, Ekiti State Council of Arts and Culture, Amb. Wale Ojo-Lanre; and an Ekiti based Artist, Tope Adebiyi; at the opening session of Ekiti State Festival of Arts and Culture (EKIFEST) at the Ekiti Parapo Pavilion, Ado-Ekiti, on Wednesday

Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi on Wednesday reiterated his administration’s determination towards increasing its investment and exploits in the arts and culture sector for the economic prosperity of the State and its citizenry .

The Governor who stated this resolve in Ado Ekiti, the state capital while declaring open the 2019 Ekiti State Festival of Arts and Culture (EKIFEST), equally announced an upgrade of the state’s Council of Arts and Culture to the Ministry of Arts, Culture and Tourism

Fayemi gave the new Ministry the directive to consolidate on its various achievements, enhance the potential of creative practitioners and boost the Internally Generated Revenue of the State.

He added that the role of Arts and Culture as catalysts to progressive multiculturalism is gaining more recognition.

The Governor further described EKIFEST as an economic and social strategy aimed at repositioning the creative industry of the State for optimal performance and drawing attention of the global public to the unique landmarks of the State in tourism and culture.

“In Ekiti State, our cultural heritage keeps our memories alive of how beliefs and cultural expressions have contributed to the development of our society. Ekiti is a state of rich artistic and cultural heritage and endowed with the abundance of talents. Our riches are well demonstrated through arts, dance, literature, music, food and folklore.”

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“I commend the efforts of the Ekiti State Council for Arts and Culture towards the attainment of the target set for it. We still want the council to go a step further by consolidating on the various achievements, enhancing the potential of creative practitioners and boosting the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of Ekiti State. And to enhance the progress already made in the last year, I have decided to re-establish the Ministry of Arts, Culture and Tourism for better synergy and integration”, the governor said.

Governor Fayemi who assured investors of necessary support and encouragement called on entrepreneurs to visit the various tourism corridors in the State and invest in them, stressing that their investment is not only secured, but bound to yield good dividends.

Also speaking at the event, the Chairperson of EKIFEST 2019 planning committee and Wife of the Governor, Erelu Bisi Fayemi, said the festival was aimed at creating tourism attraction and enhance investment opportunities as well as create viable markets for local businesses.

Mrs Fayemi noted that the previous editions of the festival in 2012 and 2013 increased tourism visits to the State and created the needed exposure for the cultural infrastructure.

“EKIFEST 2019 is designed towards the restoration of our core values as well as empowerment against the scourge of poverty. Our culture is a viable solution to several problems bedeviling our society. It is in our culture to be diligent, honest and peace-loving. Our culture abhors laziness; our culture goes against the shirking of responsibilities”, she said.

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In his address, the Director General of the Council of Arts and Culture, Mr Wale Ojo-Lanre said Ekiti people are gradually getting used to EKIFEST as an economic diversification project. He urged the people to promote Ekiti tradition for excellence.

Ojo-Lanre thanked Fayemi for providing the wherewithal for the resuscitation of the Council which has helped remove the State from the blacklist of absentee States at both local and international cultural festivals.

He disclosed that the State Cultural Troupe had been sponsored by Fayemi to Budapest, Edo State and Ogun State to promote the State’s cultural heritage.

Highlights of the opening session of the festival were colourful and carnival-like parade by all the 16 local government areas, Nollywood stars, artists and ethnic groups in the state as well as musical jamboree round the major streets of Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.

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