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Obaseki to boost 2019 NAFEST with Edo royalty

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…commends Runsewe for Nigeria’s cultural rebound

By Osa Mbonu

Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki, has promised to enrich the cultural content of National Festival of Arts and Culture, NAFEST with robust presence of Benin royalty and culture never seen anywhere before now.

•Otunba Runsewe presenting a gift to Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo State

Speaking at a pre-NAFEST 2019 engagement meeting with the Director-General of National Council for Arts and Culture, NCAC, Otunba Segun Runsewe at Government House in Benin City on Thursday, Obaseki noted that Edo being the cultural nerve centre of Nigeria, will bring its rich cultural experience to embellish the growing influence of NAFEST as the true face of Nigeria cultural festival and unity adding that Edo state under his watch is honoured to fly the cultural flag of the nation at a time like this in the history of Nigeria.

He commended NCAC Director- General, Otunba Segun Runsewe, for the very strategic uncommon turnaround of the fortunes of the national festival into refreshing iconic gathering of the best of Nigeria culture less than two years in office, urging him to break more records. “With what you have done with NAFEST, some of us are reassured that Nigeria can rebound in all aspects of our national life and we are proud to have you at the centre as key partner to take Nigeria out of the woods to the Promised Land,” Obaseki said.

I have always loved the Korean culture —Chiamaka Ibebunjo

To drive the 2019 edition of the festival slated for Edo State in October, Governor Obaseki immediately directed the State Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Mr. Osaze Osemwingie-Ero, to put in place a local organising committee to ensure stress-free organisation of the festival with detailed cost inputs forwarded to his office.

Addressing the governor earlier, Otunba Runsewe disclosed that he was in Benin to appreciate the governor for bidding and winning the hosting right for 2019 edition of NAFEST, promising to pay detailed attention to the full content of the festival, not excluding its marketing and promotion.

He extolled the giant strides and initiatives of the governor for being the first in Nigeria to introduce cultural clubs in Edo public schools and also the introduction of culture/tourism desk at Benin Airport as a process of reviving and sustaining Edo culture in the minds of the people and Nigerians at large.

Otunba Runsewe revealed that a national organising committee for NAFEST 2019 in Edo would be announced soon to enable NCAC to showcase another record- breaking outing in Benin possibly more than the last edition held in Rivers state last year. Notable intervention on content such as cultural golf competition, empowerment and skill acquisition, health outreach, children cultural dance and competition with a special outing with Edo State governor’s wife will brace the Edo October outing.


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