…AT WARRI RAMP ENERHEN JUNCTION WARRI DELTA STATE
As the date for 3rd edition of the Warri Arts Festival JINJA 2021 draws near, the Organising Committee has highlighted preparatory efforts and milestone already covered towards achieving what it called the ‘drive’ of the Warri.
Speaking on Friday at a media chat held in NNPC junior staff club Warril, Mr jilams odigwe chairman Warri Arts Festival JINJA 2021 highlighted various steps that have been taken in preparation towards making the national festival a success.
According to him, all various committees have gone far in their specific tasks and all was set for the kick off of the state major cultural exhibition, exposition and fiesta happening in Warri ramp (former shell ramp) enerhen junction Warri, Delta State proudly powered by Nigeria Petroleum Development Company NPDC, fully endorsed by Delta State commissioner for Arts and culture. And other national bodies.
Enumerating some of the specific accomplishments so far to include meeting with various trade groups such as transport unions, food and drinks sellers, operators of tourism and hospitality services as well as other critical stakeholders, jilams explained that other steps are being taken to ensure safety and welfare of participating Contingents, guests and tourists who are coming in large number sequel to the formation of Toursits Relations Committee which had already opened an interactive festival website.
The chairman, took time to justify the hosting of the festival, which, he said, a few critics, speaking out of cheap ignorance, might regard as “wastefully reckless and extravagant”. Quoting from the words of an American journalist, David Binder that “Festivals promote diversity, they bring neighbours into dialogue, they increase creativity, they offer opportunities for civic pride, they improve our general psychological well-being. In short they make cities better places to live”, he affirmed that festivals bring influx of people and “this influx is what makes places like Lagos, Abuja and other big cities what they are. It is the influx that make big States significant contributors to the national income. There contributions, in turn, situate them far outside the list of low revenue States. The creativity and opportunities which festivals engender are some of the reasons why more people leave their various towns and relocate to cities”
The chairman further asserted that ” Warri has remained what it is because, until recently, nothing had been created to bring people moving in large numbers to the most popular local government area in Africa”.
He said hosting of high capacity functions and driving traffic of visitors to the city would be fulfilling the vision of the State Government as conceived since the first tenure of Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa i when the administration invested in massive infrastructures like theAsaba stadium, encourage creative entrepreneurship, Delta State talent factory, traditional rulers Civic Centre, the skill acquisition programs and so on. This vision, he said, was in tandem with the plan to make Arts, culture and Tourism a tool for the transformation of the State economy.
The Press Chat, which was transmitted live by the State media, was attended by correspondents from different media house within and outside the State , including online platforms and social media influencers.
Answering series of questions from journalists including the Warri tv correspondent, David igba, the Festival chairman confirmed that over 4000 participants are being expected. He also said thousands of others from different categories and segments of the society would also be present and joined by hundreds of tourists who are being attracted by the positive popularity of the City in terms of creativityt as well as many tourist- friendly attractions in the City mangrove swamp reserve.. Based on the multiplier effects of the festival, the chairman said it might not be quite easy to project how much is the revenue to be earned from the experience by the city could be. He however explained that judging by the experiences of festivals, the social and economic impacts of Warri Arts Festival would be monumental. The youths were already in camp rehearsing for the opening and closing ceremonies of the festival. Some of the youths were drawn from various dance groups in the State. He also said local Artistes have recently come together to showcase wonderful Artsl. All these therefore testifies to the fact that tourism, hospitality, theatre associations and local cultural stakeholders are not left out of the State project.
While thanking journalists for attending the press chat, the chairman of the festival explained that the entire efforts were being geared towards achieving a triplet vision of hosting hospitably, participating actively and setting a new template that would challenge any Festival that may be planning to host the in future. The Festival committee look forward to seeing everyone on the 21st to 28th November, 2021. At the festival village Warri ramp former shell ramp enerhen junction. Delta State.