• ‘We’re ready to Showcase Tourism, Export Creative Ideas to Global Market’ – Governor

Lagos State, on Wednesday, became the convergence of Nigeria’s diversity and cultures. The State literally turned the centre stage for the exhibition of local customs, arts and traditions in what appeared to be the largest cultural carnival in the country.

An array of elegantly dressed troupes from 29 states of the federation kept the guests’ attention hooked to flamboyantly rehearsed pageantry, flaunting the nation’s rich cultural heritage in the full glare of local and international audience.

The contingents are participants in the week-long festival tagged “EKO-NAFEST 2022”. The 35th National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFEST) is being organised by the Lagos State Government in collaboration with National Council of Arts and Culture (NCAC).

Top Government officials, foreign envoys, traditional rulers, cultural ambassadors, NGOs, and schoolchildren made the roll call of guests at the festival’s opening ceremony held Mobolaji Johnson Pavilion, Onikan.

Lagos became the fourth time host of NAFEST, a cultural fiesta initiated in 1970 to foster national integration, strengthen understanding and unity among diverse ethnic groups and promote the peaceful co-existence.

The event will feature various competitions and non-competitive activities, including excursion trips to various tourist sites in the host city.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu declared the fiesta opened, charging the participants and audience to exhibit “true spirit of Lagos”, which he explained to be the State’s “accommodating nature” towards visitors.

Sanwo-Olu said Lagos Government accepted the event’s hosting right in demonstration of its love for cultural advancement and promotion of togetherness.

As melting pot of culture and hub of commerce, the Governor said Lagos would continue to export the nation’s rich heritage and entertainment to the global market, thereby attracting foreign investment into the local creative and entertainment sector.

He said: “Lagos State Government is proud to be hosting NAFEST for the fourth time, having hosted the first edition in 1970. The foundational objectives of the festival is in line with our administration’s goals for the promotion of entertainment and tourism, which are a key pillar of the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda. We are deliberate about promoting every aspect of tourism, arts and culture, which is why we make it a practice to support, partner and collaborate in activities that would further strengthen our cultural heritage and promote our unity in diversity.

“For the next seven days, delegates from the states across the federation will be showcasing and celebrating our country’s cultural heterogeneity. As headquarters of entertainment and foremost commercial nerve centre of Africa, Lagos will continue to represent our country globally in creativity, music, films and culture. As a State, we are committed to supporting local talents and help them to export their creative ideas to the global market where they can exchange them for values.”

Sanwo-Olu re-echoed the need to use the cultural platform to engender peaceful co-existence and promote unity. He told the cultural troupes to eschew issues that that promote division and stoke tension.

As 2023 general elections draw close, the Governor urged the participants to use the opportunity to support leaders that would leverage the multi-cultural heritage and language to unify the country and bring back the spirit of togetherness among all citizens.

Rather than allowing differences in language and culture to divide them, Sanwo-Olu told participants to see the diversity as resources to be developed for collective advantage.

He said: “We are in the campaign season as our nation’s general elections has been scheduled to hold within the first quarter of next year. As political office holders continue to engage the electorate at this period, it is important to re-echo the message of unity and peaceful co-existence which NAFEST platform provides.

While we celebrate the Nigerian heritage and cultural diversity here today, my clarion call is that we take this an opportunity to elect leaders who will recognize and take advantage of our rich, multi-cultural heritage and language to unify us as a people and as a nation which was the intention of our founding fathers.”

Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, advised the cultural to use the opportunity of the festival to explore the tourism sites in different parts of Lagos, especially the waterway transportation system being developed by the State Government.

She said peaceful co-existence remained the catalyst for national development, urging the delegates to engage in dialogue and activities that would guarantee the peace throughout the period of the event.

NCAC Director General, Otunba Segun Runsewe, expressed appreciation of the Council to Gov. Sanwo-Olu and members of the Local Organising Committee for putting necessary facilities and logistic arrangements in place for the hosting of the event.

He said: The contents of EKO-NAFEST 2022 have been deliberately drawn to reflect and resonate the importance of peace across our nation. The event also emphasises the need to mobilise our collective conscience to fully embrace our diversity in the interest of progress and prosperity.”



The Executive Chairman of Ikosi-Isheri LCDA, Mayoress Samiat Abolanle Bada, urged the residents of Lagos State to vote for Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu for President 2023, re-elect Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Dr. Obafemi Hamzat for second terms.

She disclosed this while delivering her speech at the Ikosi-Isheri Ketu Magodo Annual Cultural Carnival 2022 edition, held at the cmd events centre, Magodo on September 30th, 2022.

She noted that those in attendance will testify that their party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), is bringing dividends of democracy to the masses at the local, state and federal levels.

While speaking on the theme of this year’s edition: OUR CULTURE, NOT OUR RELIGION, she said that as Nigerians and Africans, we have manifold cultures, some of which are intertwined with religion across the diverse tribes and ethnics in our country and continent.

In her words, “Our religious differences should not debar us from celebrating our lofty culture and traditions.

“All over the world, cultures are being celebrated not only because it unites and educates us, but because it’s a better way of celebrating our differences, as well as our common interests. We in Ikosi-isheri LCDA are proud to say that we are one Nigerian nation, living in peace and harmony; we are united in our diversity!”

According to her “the 2-day event gives us a better opportunity to celebrate our nation’s 62nd Independence Anniversary in style, as seen during the cultural parade we had earlier this morning from the Council Secretariat down to this venue.

“You would have witnessed carnival floats and pageantry of various cultures, and in addition to that, I am assuring you of maximum fun here today and tomorrow as we will be having loads of outstanding creative performers from various fields of display and socio-cultural groups such as Fuji Maestro – Alhaji Wasiu Ayinde Marshal K1 de Ultimate, Sir Shina Peters, Obesere Omorapala, Pasuma, Qdot, Saheed Balogun, Koffi, MC Mallam Audu, Bella Shmurda, OT, SATO Dancers (from Badagry), Olaijo Art & Gallery (Ibadan), Ewi and several upcoming artistes to entertain us.”

She stated that as a responsible and proactive Government, their administration has decided to use this cultural carnival characterized by entertainment and tourism to enunciate the importance of our forgotten traditions, promote unity irrespective of our religious and ethnic differences, encourage investors to come and establish in Ikosi-isheri LCDA, and to promote the cultures and colors of various ethnic groups and communities in Ikosi-isheri LCDA, Lagos State, and Nigeria at large.

She further stated her campaign promises were kept, which were roads and infrastructure, education and youth empowerment, social welfare and tourism, and health and the environment.

She also urged the people of Lagos State to vote for Senator Adetokunbo Mukhail Abiru as Senator representing Lagos-East Senatorial District, Hon. Kafilat Adetola Ogbara as Member of the Federal House of Representatives, Kosofe Constituency, and Hon. Femi Saheed for LAHA Kosofe Constituency II for a greater Lagos State and a better Nigeria.


The First Lady of Lagos State, Mrs Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, commended the Chairman of Ikosi-Isheri LCDA, Princess Samiat Abolanle Bada, for initiating and sustaining the Ikosi-Isheri Cultural Carnival, which has now become an annual festival that promotes peaceful co-existence and celebrates the rich cultural heritage of the people of Ikosi-Isheri Local Council Development Area (LCDA).

She said it is commendable that this important festival has not only been sustained but also expanded to become bigger, better, and bolder.

In his words, “Festivals, such as today’s event, are usually instrumental in laying a solid foundation for unity, good neighborliness, and peaceful co-existence among the diverse ethnic groups in any given society.

“A cultural festival is also a veritable avenue to celebrate the diverse cultures and economic endeavors of the various socio-cultural groups within a defined location or jurisdiction.”

She noted that the Ikosi-Isheri/Ketu-Magodo Cultural Carnival has contributed in a big and outstanding fashion to setting the tone for tranquility and development being witnessed in the LCDA.

She stated that it is in convergence with the objective of the administration of Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu to uphold the cultural heritage of Lagos and Lagosians in line with the THEMES Agenda for a greater Lagos of our dreams.

She disclosed that we must continue to encourage initiatives such as this cultural festival to serve as a platform to galvanize the people for good causes, promote unity in the face of threats to national cohesion, and enhance the economic prosperity of the people.

She also urged politicians and the general public to follow the rules of engagement and avoid any action that could jeopardize the peace in Lagos State as the election campaign gets underway.

She admonished the populace in attendance to support the Lagos State Government towards sustaining the peaceful co-existence that the state has always experienced.



The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, in partnership with the Temple Company of Ogidi Studios, Lekki, Lagos, has commenced capacity-building for more than 200 Youths in Music, Visual Arts, Multimedia Design and Textile, among others.

Speaking at the launch of the programme in Lagos, the Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf, disclosed that the new collaboration was designed to empower participants, particularly youths, with the right set of skills in any of the chosen fields.

Akinbile-Yussuf noted that the initiative is among several others embarked upon by the administration of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to empower residents, stressing that there had been an earlier collaboration with Ebony Life Academy and Del-York Creative Academy to train youths via its free, short courses on creative skills.

She explained that the programme covered all aspects of filmmaking and media content production including acting, directing, editing and cinematography amongst others, adding that about 1,500 young talented persons have already benefitted from the first phase of the training.


Also speaking at the event, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Oyinade Nathan-Marsh, said that the administration of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu placed a high premium on Tourism and Entertainment, which are among the six pillars of the T.H.E.M.E.S development agenda

The CEO of Temple Company, Mr. Idris Olorunimbe of Ogidi Studios explained that the training would be different and significant because the internationally acclaimed Henley School of Business is scheduled for the programme.

Dignitaries at the event included Mrs. Sheila Ojei, Director of Strategy, Funding and Stakeholder Management, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) and Talented Nollywood Actor Ope Aiyeola amongst others.

Interested applicants are enjoined to register for the training via:

Lagos Commissioner Bags Travel and Tourism Personalities of 2021 ~Ajasa-Info

Travellers’ Awards has unveiled the Personality Awards for the year 2021.

The Awards were selected by the elite members of the Tourism Community and approved by the Publishers of and Travellers Magazine.

Pharm (Mrs) Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf, the Lagos State Commissioner of Tourism has been chosen by members of the Tourism 100 Club and the Publishers of Travellers Magazine as the Best Tourism Commissioner in Nigeria in 2021.

Almost all the nominations by the members went for the Lagos Commissioner who engaged stakeholders and initiated training for Tour Operators and Creatives based in Lagos.

Lagos State has become the benchmark for most states in tourism development.

Lagos State launched its Tourism Masterplan in 2021. That is an unprecedented feat by any state in Nigeria. She initiated the Community Based Tourism, CBT projects in the 5 divisions of Lagos.

Lagos launched a Trust Fund that provides loans and grants to tourism practitioners based in Lagos.


… As Ministry Ends Three-Day Strategic Retreat on Rebranding

The Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Pharm (Mrs) Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf has charged the entire workforce of the Ministry to ensure that all visitors and tourists to the State experience the best of Lagos tourism, entertainment, arts and culture.

The Commissioner gave the charge during the staff retreat with the theme “Strategic Re-branding of MTAC for Enhanced Service Delivery”, held at Best Western Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos, stressing that a good and memorable experience would automatically make tourists become advocates of the hospitality that abounds in the State.

She stated that the overall goal of the retreat was to harness the great potentials and opportunities in the State’s tourism sector, adding that the retreat has also exposed participants to the need for a documented structure that will ensure accountability, continuity and sustainability.

The Commissioner maintained that the Ministry will henceforth be intentional in its sponsorship drive, such that only credible organisations that align with the vision of the Ministry would receive government sponsorship.

Also speaking, the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr. Solomon Bonu, said the retreat was convened to equip all the staff of the Ministry with the requisite knowledge for better relationships with numerous stakeholders and more effective service delivery.

According to him, the retreat will further expand the knowledge of the staff about the contents of the Tourism Masterplan and Policy of the Ministry.

One of the programme facilitators and a former Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr Adewale Jamiu Ashimi, while delivering a paper titled “Strategy For Implementation of Tourism Policy and Master Plan”, stressed the need to promote tourism by creating an enabling environment to attract investments and tourists, just as he advised that intellectual property must be protected and creativity encouraged.

He noted that all relevant MDAs and private sector stakeholders must be carried along to establish strong governance for a viable and sustainable implementation of the entertainment and tourism pillar of the T.H.E.M.E.S. Agenda of the current administration.

Urging the Ministry to identify tourism attraction clusters for immediate or short-term implementation, Ashimi suggested the organisation of a tourism summit for all Public and Private Sectors Participants to come up with implementable agenda, specific roles and targets for all stakeholders.

Moremi Doles Out Cash Gift, Hairdryer To Party Loyalists in Ward G Party Meeting ~Ajasa-Info

The first All Progressives Party’s Ward G meeting in Agbado-Okeodo LCDA, in the year 2022 was held yesterday, with a surprising cash gift and empowerment tools to party faithful by the Honourable Commissioner for Tourism, Arts &Culture, Pharm (Mrs) Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf.

Her presence came as a surprise to many party faithful who had already been seated without any inkling that the Commissioner will attend the Ward meeting occasioned by her busy-scheduled works.

The meeting was called to analyse the events that characterised the party activities in the year 2021.

Also, the meeting centred on the discussions to chart new courses for the party activities and events for this year.

While addressing the congregation of party members, the Honourable Commissioner thanked the members for their steadfastness and unalloyed supports for the party at all times.

She enjoined them never to be deterred by activities of some, stressing that loyalty pays for anyone who is perseverant.

The first five people who came early to the meeting received a sum of N20,000 each.

In addition, another two-party loyalist who emerged through an open ballot system gifted a hairdresser’ standing dryer

As if that was not enough, the women and youth wings received N50,000 each.

Speaking with one of the beneficiaries (name withheld),
” I am very grateful to the Hon. Commissioner for this act of generosity. If other political office holders can take a clue from her, the country will be a better place for us to live”, she disclosed.

“I am short of words. I never expected that I will leave the ward meeting with a dime. The cash gift will settle some debts I incurred during the yuletide seasons. I pray to God to continue to uplift her positions. She is just too kind and a rare gift for us in Ward G”, a beneficiary stated.

Christmas Holiday: Remain hospitable to tourists, Lagos Commissioner tells residents ~Ajasa-Info

As the yuletide season approaches, the Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Pharm. (Mrs) Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, has urged Lagos residents to be hospitable to tourists who would visit the state for the christmas and New year celebrations.

Akinbile-Yussuf , who made the call in her Christmas message through the Ministry’s Public Affairs Unit, said that Lagos residents must be willing to accommodate and create positive impression in the minds of tourists this festive period and beyond.

She said that the State, known as the city of excellence, has a lot to offer tourists during the Christmas holiday break and in the New Year celebrations, urging Lagos youths to be enterprising as they engage in massive production of souvenirs that could be purchased by visitors during this festive period and beyond.

” I advise Lagos residents to remain hospitable to tourists this Yuletide and holiday period because these individuals are the people who will give wings to the economy of Lagos State to blossom. The youths of this dear State also must be enterprising and be prepared to take economic advantage of various tourism activities that will be taking place in different parts of the State.

“Our youths should focus more on production of souvenirs that can be purchased by tourists whenever they visit Lagos and this will make them long to visit Lagos State the more,” she said.

Additionally, the Commissioner canvassed patronage for water transportation, saying that tourists should not only explore Lagos tourism potentials on the Mainland but also explore the coastal parts of the State through the waterways.

In her words, “As a way to improve transportation in the state, the Ministry of Waterfront Infrastructure Development has completed the construction of 10 new jetties for the use of the populace and a measure to further encourage water transportation for tourists and the citizens.

”Our waterways are safe and neat, we want Lagos residents and tourists to make use of the waterways,” she said.

She also enjoined owners of Tourism and Hospitality outlets to adhere to all safety and health regulations that would guarantee the safety of tourists and visitors to the State.


… As LASG Pays Glowing Tribute to Late Fela Anikulapo Kuti

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, his wife, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, members of the State Executive Council and several other top dignitaries including former Senator, Mr. Musiliu Obanikoro, were on Friday evening thrilled by array of Nigeria’s best entertainers at ‘Lagos on Show’ event.

The Show, which was organised by the State Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture to celebrate Nigeria’s 61st Independence Anniversary celebration as well as pay tribute to the late Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, took place at Muri-Okunola Park, Victoria Island under an atmosphere of fun, relaxation and entertainment.

Speaking on the success of the Eko on Show event and the enthusiasm shown by participants at the event, the Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, assured all fun-loving Lagosians, Nigerians and the world as a whole, that the entertainment scene is gradually being opened for more activities, adding that the Ministry will continue to host more entertainment programmes in order to ensure that the sector is not totally subdued by inactivity.

The Commissioner, who acknowledged the huge impact made by Fela, through his genre of music, while he was alive and even in death, described his memory as evergreen and the celebration of his posthumous birthday as a deserving one.

On his part, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr. Solomon Bonu said that the 15th of October, the birthday of the late Icon, was deliberately chosen for the ‘Eko on Show’ event to entertain Lagosians and also celebrate the life of the music legend.

He said that the State Government has been identifying with the one-week long Felabration event, which kicked off on Monday 11th October, assuring that the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture remains committed to the annual Felabration event.

Bonu enjoined Lagosians to enjoy the atmosphere of fun created by the State Government, celebrate with moderation and be mindful of the prevailing and ravaging pandemic.

Apart from the entertainment part of the show, the event also featured a fashion display by Lanre Da-Silva Ajayi, a Nigerian fashion designer and founder of Eponymous label among other designers where some of her labels including couture, ready-to-wear, jewellery, hairpieces, metallic fabrics, lace and African patterns, among others, were displayed and showcased.

There was also a display of classic artworks by Nike Art Gallery, which is arguably the largest of its kind in West Africa, boasting a collection of about 8,000 diverse artworks from various Nigerian artists.

The high point of the show was different performances by Nigerian artists including Tiwa Savage, Teni, D’banj, and veteran musicians like Dede, Kwam 1 and Shina Peters who thrilled participants at the hybrid event to the best of Lagos entertainment.

Afrobeat singer, Dede Mabiaku brought back the memory of the late legendary Afrobeat founder, Fela Anikulapo Kuti during his performance where he paid tribute to his late boss, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti.

During his performance, Dede was also joined on stage by top government officials, including the Commissioner for the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Pharm. Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf; the Special Adviser, Mr. Solomon Bonu; the Permanent Secretary, Princess Adenike Adedoyin-Ajayi as well as the Senior Special Assistant in the Ministry, Mr. Tunji Seymour as the singer played some of the old tunes of the Kalakuta Republic icon, including his popular “Omi O’lota”(Water No Get Enemy) to the admiration of all.


The Lagos State Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, will on Monday, 27th September, 2021, join other tourism enthusiasts across the world to celebrate the annual World Tourism Day with the theme “Tourism For Inclusive Growth”.

Speaking on the theme for this year’s annual celebration, which is the 42nd edition, the Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, said that the State Government will leverage on the celebration to meet and share innovative ideas and strategies with its tourism stakeholders, practitioners, and academia on ways to attain, implement and sustain the theme set by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).

She maintained that this year’s World Tourism Day presents an opportunity to rethink the future of the sector, especially its contribution to Sustainable Development Goals, through the social, cultural, political and economic value chain, saying that there is a need for recovery after the effects of COVID-19 on the sector.

The Commissioner stated that the inclusive growth concept, which is the latest approach advocated by policymakers to improve living standards in the tourism sector, is in line with the Ministry’s strategy to include residents of the various communities across the State in the development of their rich tourism potentials.

Specifically, Akinbile-Yussuf revealed that the implementation of a Community-Based Tourism, CBT, initiative has started with the creation of a Unit to oversee tourism development in different communities across the State.

The Commissioner also disclosed that some potential tour guides are presently undergoing a six-week free training programme sponsored by the State Government, stressing that the gesture will aid tourism development and in consonance with the implementation of the State’s Tourism Master Plan.

She averred that topics like ‘Tourism as a Catalyst for Growth and Sustainability, and ‘Building Inclusive Partnership For Growth Through Tourism Recovery’, among others, would be extensively examined with paper presentations by tourism professionals.

Cote d’Ivoire will be the host country for this year’s event, as globally declared and accepted by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), while other Nations including Lagos, will join in celebrating the Day from their respective countries.

Recall that World Tourism Day was initiated by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and is commemorated yearly on 27th September to foster awareness among the international community on the importance of tourism and its social, cultural and economic values.


… As Government Officials Pay Inspection Visit to Centre

Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, has said that the Government is eager to complete the ongoing re-construction of J. Randle Centre, a proposed one-stop Centre for Tourism and Cultural activities, located in Onikan on Lagos Island.

The Commissioner spoke during a recent on-the-spot assessment of construction works, alongside the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Princess Adenike Adedoyin-Ajayi, as well as other principal officials of the Ministry.

Akinbile-Yussuf said: “We are here to inspect this huge project that has been embarked upon by the State Government. I am glad to report that we met the contractor and the consultants at the site trying to ensure the quick delivery of this project”.

While underscoring the commitment of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to the project, the Commissioner disclosed that Mr. Governor recently led a delegation to the United Kingdom to firm up arrangements for the completion of the J. Randle Centre.

Her words: “A few weeks ago, we were in the United Kingdom with Mr. Governor in relation to the Phase II of this project, which is actually going on well. The completion stage of this phase is well over 80 per cent and I am confident that this project will be delivered by early 2022”.

“The J. Randle Centre is where history is going to be unveiled again in Lagos State and for Africa as a whole, being the first-of-its-kind in Africa. We want members of the Public to visit this site and see the history and the beautiful culture of the Yoruba and their heritage”, the Commissioner averred.

She explained that the second phase of the J. Randle Centre is the technology part, the museum, the artefacts and everything that has to do with the content, adding that the Centre will bring to memory, the way the Yorubas lived in the past, portray the present and also explain what will become of the Yoruba race in few decades.

On her part, the Permanent Secretary, Princess Adenike Adedoyin-Ajayi, disclosed that the State Government has concluded arrangements to repatriate some historical artworks and artefacts, among others, that are of historical value to the Yoruba race from the United Kingdom.

“When all of these artefacts are brought back here, one of the things that will be of great attraction is the fact that there is a museum in place that we can put these artworks and take ownership of as Yorubas”, the Permanent Secretary said.