As part of efforts to ensure peaceful coexistence amongst other ethnicities, the Niger state government has assured that it will reintroduce the annual cultural festival tagged Niger State Festivals (NIFEST) next year.
The state Commissioner for Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Fati Adamu stated this at the end of Year event and launch of the maiden magazine by the Isoko and Urhobo Young Men Association (IUYMA) at the Abdulsalam Youth Centre Minna.
The commissioner who lauded the association for their peaceful cohabitation said that their conduct has presented an avenue for the Government through the Ministry to harness unity.
The Commissioner who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry Dr. Idris Legbo explained the Ministry’s readiness to foster unity between Nigerlites and the people of Isoko/Urhobo amd other ethic groups living in Niger state.
According to her “the state government has created an enabling environment for the success of the people of Delta state and to further foster oneness, we will ensure the Isoko and Urhobo people participate in the anticipated NIFEST coming up in April 2024.”
Speaking also, the Delta State Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Darlington Ijeh encouraged Deltans living in Niger state to continue to live in peace and harmony and ensure they teach their children the norms and values of the people.
Ijeh who was represented by Ambassador Yunusa Musa urged Deltans in the northern part of Nigeria to cohabit with their host but ensure they do all they can to preserve their culture.
Earlier, in his welcome remarks, President of the IUYMA, Wilson Atujiyor called on sons of Isoko and Urhobo extract based in the state to identify with the Association.
According to him “wherever you reside try to identify and associate with your people, because they are your family either in good or bad times. This way, you will get closer to the people and understand the culture.”
In their separate goodwill messages, the Patron of IUYMA Mr. Albert Ukale and Shaka Adaba explained that the Isoko and Urhobo people are the most culturally attached people in Nigeria and urged them to teach their children the mother tongue, noting the importance of cultural values.
Reviewing the content of the Magazine, the Editor of the Magazine Daniel Atori said it will serve as a guide to children and to non Isoko and Urhobo spouses, adding that, it will aid their quick understanding of the languages as well as play a vital roll in educating their children.
Highlights of the event were thanksgiving service at the St. Luke Military Church, Barracks, Minna, cultural display by IUYMA members and launching of the magazine.