In India, Ekiti, Niger win International Arts Competition for Nigeria
By Samuel Ogunsona
Nigeria on Friday emerged winner of the Surajkund International Arts and Crafts Festival in India.
The two- week competition is the largest arts and culture festival in the world.
The country was represented by Ekiti State Performing Company, for performance content, and Niger State Tourism Commission, for Crafts Exhibition. Prof Ojo Bakare, renowned professor of Choreography and and Performannce Aesthetics and immediate past Commissioner for Arts, Culture and Tourism in Ekiti State, is the leader of the Delegation.
Nigeria, the host Country, India and Uganda got the VIP pick in that order for the best performances in the festival that featured over 50 countries that performed daily for two weeks.
As a result of Nigeria’s exemplary performances, the leaders of Delegation for all the African countries at the festival chose Prof Bakare to lead an all African collaboration performance at the festival. The African countries also made a declaration for an All African networking organisation that will push for the development of Arts, Culture and Heritage in the continent. Prof Bakare was also selected as the President.
Prof Bakare who hailed the Federal Government for tipping Ekiti and States as her representative at the international competition, gave kudos to the 15- member troupe and their officials for the superlative performances at the world festival.
Before emerging Nigeria’s representative at the global festival, The Ekiti State Performing Company came second at NAFEST 2020 in Jos, came first at NAFEST 2021 and took the third position at NAFEST 2022 in Lagos. It won the most consistent State at NAFEST 2022. At NAFEST 2020, 2021 and 2022, Ekiti State came first in almost all the Performing Arts categories like Dance, Choral Music and Drama. Niger State was also selected for Craft exhibition because Bida had just been named UNESCO Creative City.