Glamour, Colour, Culture Take Centre Stage As Heritage Week Ends With Lagos Carnival 2013
Apr 1, 2013 - Glamour, colour, fun and beauty took the centre stage on Easter Monday as various groups representing diverse neighbourhoods, communities, associations and selected schools in Lagos put up a masterful display at the Tafawa Balewa Square Lagos as the week long Heritage Week came to an exciting end with the 2013 Lagos Carnival.
The State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) while addressing the capacity crowd made up of participants in the carnival processions and the spectators which filled up the stands at the TBS, said Lagos has become the destination of choice at this time of the year.
The Governor added that the State has achieved the global calendar in Easter as the State is now the place to be, "Our hotels are full, our streets are busy and happy. I can say we have proceeded from a very clear vision, the mission is on course, the dream is in the making and Lagos is prospering".
While thanking the leaders of the various groups for agreeing to have one Carnival, the Governor recalled that four years ago when the Lagos Carnival was about to start, there were so many small groups, but the government decided to have one big carnival on a unique date at a unique time in a unique place.
Acknowledging and expressing gratitude to all of those who have contributed to making the 2013 Carnival a success, especially the Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, the Deputy Governor, Hon (Mrs) Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire and Commissioner for Tourism, Mr Disun Holloway a success, the Governor noted with delight that everyone has had a lot of funfair and colour.
"It is the sustenance of a tradition that dates back over 100 years. It is a handing over, a torch passing moment of a strong cultural heritage of our grand and great grand parents to us and now to you. I hope that one day, one of you here will also pass on the torch", he said.
Continuing, Governor Fashola noted the fact that beyond the shores of the country, the Carnival is also helping to re-connect bridges. "This Carnival also helps us to connect our brothers and sisters in some of their roots in South America and in especially Brazil where there have been a large Brazilian participation in this year's Carnival", he explained.
He hinted that the State wants to have a blast of a Carnival with very strong Brazilian content later on next year preparatory to the World Cup in Brazil and the Olympics in 2016.
According to the Governor, the Lagos Carnival has helped to spread the roots of Lagos across Africa as some tourists from Zimbabwe are also attending the 2013 Carnival first to understudy what is being done in Lagos as the strongest Carnival on the African Continent and also demonstrate the African spirit by donating a gift and a prize to the Lagos Carnival Beauty Queen which includes an all expense paid trip to Zimbabwe.
He also said there is a strong economy that is in the making as all the costumes used at the Carnival were made in Lagos by young men and women, boys and girls, adding that it is a wholly home grown local economy that can get bigger.
He also gave kudos to all the first responders, the security, the healthcare providers, the fire service all of whom have been very wonderful providing services during the Lagos Heritage Week which climaxed with the Lagos Carnival.
The various contingents of the participants had earlier gone in a procession through different routes like Bourdillon Road-Giwa Barracks- Falomo Roundabout- Awolowo Road,-King George V Road-Bamgbose –Campos Square- Catholic Mission Street to the Tafawa Balewa Square.
The participating adult Carnival groups include Campos, Lafiaji, Epetedo, Oko Faji, Olowogbowo, Locomotion, Obalende, Isale-Eko, Woro Group, Mushin, Ikeja, Ebute Metta groups, Alago meji, Sango-Ago Egba, Araromi Fanty, Odi-Olowo, , Sports City groups, Surulere, Kilo, Ilasamaja, Agege and Epe with many of the members made up of predominantly the youth.
Prominent among those who witnessed the colourful displays were the Deputy Governor, Hon (Mrs) Adejoke Orelope- Adefulire, former Governor, Aremo Olusegun Osoba of Ogun State, members of the State Executive Council, Senator Babafemi Ojudu and several tourists from within and outside the country, including a delegation from Zimbabwe among other countries.