Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State flagged off the 2019 Ekiti State Festival of Arts and Culture (EKIFEST) on Wednesday 11 December 2019. That day, he upgraded the state’s Council of Arts and Culture to the Ministry of Arts, Culture and Tourism.
According to Fayemi:
“In Ekiti State, our cultural heritage keeps our memories alive of how beliefs and cultural expressions have contributed to the development of our society. Ekiti is a state of rich artistic and cultural heritage and endowed with the abundance of talents. Our riches are well demonstrated through arts, dance, literature, music, food and folklore.”
“I commend the efforts of the Ekiti State Council for Arts and Culture towards the attainment of the target set for it. We still want the council to go a step further by consolidating on the various achievements, enhancing the potential of creative practitioners and boosting the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of Ekiti State. And to enhance the progress already made in the last year, I have decided to re-establish the Ministry of Arts, Culture and Tourism for better synergy and integration”.
The Chairperson of EKIFEST 2019 planning committee and Wife of the Governor, Erelu Bisi Fayemi told the audience:
“EKIFEST 2019 is designed towards the restoration of our core values as well as empowerment against the scourge of poverty. Our culture is a viable solution to several problems bedeviling our society. It is in our culture to be diligent, honest and peace-loving. Our culture abhors laziness; our culture goes against the shirking of responsibilities”, she said.
Wale Ojo-Lanre, DG of the Council, also said Ekiti people are gradually getting used to EKIFEST “as an economic diversification project” and that the “people should promote Ekiti tradition for excellence.”
He thanked the Governor for providing the means for the resuscitation of the Council which has helped remove the State “from the blacklist of absentee States at both local and international cultural festivals.”
That is, to Budapest, Edo State and Ogun State to promote the State’s cultural heritage.