The Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) identifies regional tourism collaboration as a major component in the actualisation of the pan African dream. It is a proposed yearly event which is set to celebrate the beauty in African culture in relation to tourism promotion, Agriculture, and prohibition of human trafficking among the West Africa states.
The event will be organise by Consumer Top Brands Limited, a private organisation that focuses on creating traffic for tourism and brand promotion.
NTDC Director-General, Mr Folorunsho Coker, in an interview at Abuja disclosed the side-lines of the preparations for the 2021 edition of the ECOWAS Cultural Festival of Unity and Advancement (ECFUA).
Speaking with the Managing Director of Consumer Top Brands Limited Mrs Modupe Oyewole, Mr. Coker emphasized that ECOWAS gathering of people within tourism of ecosystem is the first step in establishing regional collaboration.
According to him, if Africans can tour African countries, exchanging ideas and introducing culture from everything we have, in terms of diversity and our heritage, we don’t need anybody else.
“We are in a continent that is rich in everything that everybody needs to develop, he said.
“If all the regions in Africa interact with each other by sharing ideas with one another, the growth of Africa can be actualised.
“On the basis of our cultural heritage and the unique art that our cultural heritage throws up, cultural tourism is so huge.
“It is time for us to wake up.
“If Kenya comes to Nigeria to join us in the promotion of game reserves, like the Yankari, why do we need to go elsewhere outside Africa? He asked.
He, also said the COVID-19 pandemic, the social distancing in the world, coupled with the ENDSARS protests, may have had its effect on Nigeria, however, these are tentative dark periods and moments in the life of a country that would shortly adjust itself.
“Cultural tourism, which depends on people coming together to celebrate culture and tradition, is under threat.
“Apart from our old tradition or cultural events and festival, overtime, God has really blessed Nigeria with credible music with regards to the future of cultural festival.
“We cannot ignore the Ojude Oba festival in Ijebu Ode in Ogun state; the New Yam festival in Anambra state or the Argungu Fishing festival in Kebbi state.
“What we need is compliance; people are going to learn from the current climate and the world,” he said.
He urged private stakeholders in the tourism industry to wake up and smell the roses.
“The days that government do everything is over.
“We need everybody to be involved in their chosen talents in building the tourism industry.
“The future is digital; we must go digital to promote and improve our internal assessment drive of doing business.
“Stakeholders must ensure that they form an association for the purpose of self-help in the growth and development of one another.
“Above all, partner should collaborate among one another in promoting their brands.
“We should all work in unity towards a better Nigeria and see tourism as a huge source of revenue for the betterment of our country. Let us stop to portray Nigeria in a negative direction,” he said.
The event is slated from 4th of August 2021 to 7th August 2021.
ECOWAS Cultural Festival of Unity and Advancement (ECFUA) promised to be the first of its kind in West Africa which will be showcasing almost 15 countries, 2000 cultural artists, beautiful and colourful African costumes, trade exhibitions, Agricultural expo and human trafficking prohibition programmes and many more.
This will take place in the heart of Badagry while the sponsors /stakeholder day will be held in Abuja.
ECFUA has partnered with Lagos State ministry of tourism, Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Project Tourism, and Nigeria Tourism development Corporation.