(eTN) – Ahead of the 6th edition of the Abuja Carnival being held from November 27-30, the Carnival Management Committee organized a stakeholders meeting in Abuja on Thursday, July 15, 2010.
The stakeholders meeting brought together commissioners of culture and tourism, permanent secretaries, directors of culture/tourism, and heads of related parastatals across the country to brainstorm on how best to improve the carnival.
Declaring the meeting open, the Minister of Tourism, Culture, and National Orientation, Alhaji Abubakar Sadiq Mohammed, who is also the chairman of the 2010 Abuja Carnival Organizing Committee, represented by the ministry’s permanent secretary, Alhaji Ibrahim Mahe, said that he was particularly delighted because the forum will provide a good platform to further deepen interaction among stakeholders of the Abuja Carnival.
Alhaji Mohammed stated, “Your presence here today has further strengthened my conviction in our collective resolve to use this leading platform for setting a vibrant agenda for a successful jubilee carnival.
“May I, through you, thank all the excellencies, the executive governors of the respective states of the federation, for the support they have been rendering to the ministry and for making it possible for states to actively participate at each edition of the carnival.”
According to the minister, he noted that over the years, there was a general tendency to underestimate the importance of culture and the synergy it provides between other facets of national life.
He, however, opined that recent happenings, especially the performances of the Abuja Carnival, have since changed this perception as the ministry is not resting in its laurels to galvanize and translate all existing commitments into tangible and visible progress, not only in Nigeria, but in Africa and, indeed, the world.
The minister stated further that in line with the policy thrust of the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan, the ministry will continue to build and improve upon the giant strides of repositioning the culture sector with the view of developing alternative source of revenue that will help reduce Nigeria’s over dependency on oil.
Sounding enthusiastic, he challenged the 2010 Abuja Carnival Management Committee to brace up to the enormity of the task of building a carnival that will drive the new economic vision of the government as enshrined in Vision 2020.
He concluded that, “I have no doubt in my mind that the creative and resourceful deliberations and outcome of the stakeholders meeting will be such that [it] will speak the minds of Nigeria[n] people, our beauty, color, creativity, and artistic excellence.”
In his speech at the stakeholders meeting, the Federal Capital Territory [FCT] Minister, Senator Balla Abdulkadiri Mohammed, who was represented by the FCT Secretary for Social Development, Mrs. Blessing Onuh, told the gathering that FCT is saddled with the responsibility of ensuring a successful hosting of the 2010 Abuja Carnival.
The minister said, as in the past, the FCT administration will be responsible for the provision and supervision of accommodation to participants from all the 36 states, medical facilities, security, transportation, and traffic control.