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Ozo Chinedu Idezuna
Culture and peaceful co-existence in Lagos will be highlighted at the 2022 edition of Eko Oni Baje Festival as its core focus when the grand finale of the annual event opens from September 27 to October 2, 2022.
The event which will hold at the Festival Ground, ABAT CBD Market, Elesakan, Ibeju Lekki, Lagos, as one of Nigeria’s offerings to the World Tourism Day event has outlined programmes that will foster peaceful co-existence amongst the various ethnic nationalities in Lagos, as well as feature activities such as New Yam Festival, Soccer Competition, Children’s Art Competition/Exhibition, Beauty pageantry and Traditional Wrestling contest.
Unveiling the 2022 programme, Ozo Chinedu Idezuna, Project Coordinator of Castledown Arts Centre, curators of the festival, said this year’s edition was strategic, considering that Nigeria is preparing for national elections a few months from now.
Said he: “We are excited to announce that everything is set for the 14th annual Eko Oni Baje New Yam Festival, which has over the years served as the cultural hub of Lagos State, where the various ethnic groups in the state, gather to celebrate our cultures by understanding our differences and strengthening our bond of unity as a nation.
“As we head into a crucial election year, the event will no less stress our common purpose as a nation, which is to foster peaceful co-existence amongst all the tribes co-habiting in Lagos. We will continue to stress that while making our political preferences, peace must be at the back of our minds. Our message remains that Nigeria is one.
“The Festival has always highlighted what unites us as Nigerians, and that is our culture, expressed through sports, our cuisine, the yam as a crop and our beautiful women. The average Nigerian has no problem with people from other ethnic groups. He interacts with his compatriots as neighbours at business places and in the various estates. We should not allow anyone divide us with politics. We need peace”.
The 2022 edition of the festival is being held in partnership with the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation, NTDC and Grandmaster range of drinks.