The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has reiterated that the unity of Nigeria remains unshaken and “no region can do it all alone’’.
The minister re-echoed his position in Calabar, after a Command Performance by the cultural troupe of the Department of Culture and Heritage, Cross River Ministry of Culture and Tourism.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the performance is part of the activities lined up for the celebration of the 2022 World Tourism Day being hosted in Calabar.
Speaking after the command performance consisting of dances and a stage play which centered on the unity and indivisibility of Nigeria, the minister underscored the importance of peaceful coexistence in the country.
“What we have witnessed today is a performance that is world class by any rate.
“I wish that those who said Nigeria is at war, should witness what we have seen today.
“Those who said Nigeria has no future, I wish they were here today.
“On the drama on unity, it means, not one of us can do it alone and anyone that has witnessed war before, will never wish for war or separation,’’ he said.
Mohammed said from the dances presented by the troupe representing the six regions, there were lots of similarities.
He said the similarities from the dances translated to the fact that “we are all one community’’ though, with diverse traditions.
The minister hailed the cultural troupe for its outstanding performance including dexterity of steps, the symphony, the synergy and fusion of the traditional with the modern.
He particularly extolled the drummers for their seamless fusion of the traditional drums with the modern steel bands.
While thanking the state governor, Prof. Ben Ayade for organising the event, the minister appealed to the younger generation to embrace performing arts.
Mr Eric Anderson, the state Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, also thanked the minister and his entourage for coming to Calabar for the event.
He said the troupe had represented the country in Egypt in 2016, Bangkok in 2018 and had been honoured globally for its outstanding performances.
In the entourage of the minister were the Director-Generals, Nigeria Tourism Development Commission, Folorunsho Coker; Nigeria Institute of Hospitality and Tourism, Nura Kangiwa and National Commission for Museum and Monument, Prof Isa Tijani.
Others included director- generals of the National Gallery of Art, Ebeten Ivara; National Broadcasting Commission, Balarabe Ilela; the General Manager, National Arts Theatre, Prof. Sunday Ododo; Artistic Director and CEO National Dance Troupe, Ahmed Mohammed as well as Directors in the ministry.
NAN reports that World Toirism Day is celebrated annually on Sept. 27 to foster awareness on tourism’s social, cultural, political and economic values.
The 2022 celebration being hosted in Calabar, Cross River capital, has the theme “Rethinking Tourism’’.