Today in #TheLagosReview

Emir of Kano, Ooni of Ife, others to attend Nigerian Reggae Festival

Long before the new-age ecclectic, music forms we know today hijacked mainstream media, there was a milder version called reggae.

This rythm- heavy music firm
originated in Jamaica in the late 1960s and quickly emerged as the country’s dominant music. By the 1970s it had become an international style that was particularly popular in Britain, the United States, and Africa.

Music Africa Awake Foundation is on a mission to bring back this Jurassic music form.

The Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi; Obi of Onitsha, Alfred Achebe and other notable traditional rulers and professionals are among the expected guests at the Nigerian Reggae Festival (NRF), slated to hold in Awka, the Anambra state capital, between December 28, 29 and 30, 2019.

The State Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs, Indigenous Artworks, Culture and Tourism, Barr. Mrs Sally Mbanefo, who disclosed this to newsmen in Awka, on Thursday, said the Reggae music festival organised by the ministry in collaboration with Music Africa Awake Foundation, was aimed at promoting peace, unity and culture in diversity.

“Nigerian Reggae festival is an event fashioned to bring peace and unity to the people of Nigeria and eradicate xenophobic attacks in African countries. Reggae promotes peace, builds bridges of love and unity among Nigerians and Africans. This is a homecoming music festival which is in line with governor Willie Obiano’s vision to promote peace at grassroots and bring home our indigenous Reggae music icons in Diaspora,” Mbanefo added.

Contributing, the Founder of African Music Awake Foundation, Prince Emeka Ojukwu, maintained that Reggae has influenced a lot of people, markets, media houses and events, as well as established itself as a brand and platform to enlighten the community.

This will serve as a platform for cultural exchange between the Caribbean, Jamaica, Nigerians and Africans in Diaspora. Foreign reggae artists will be present. Nigeria Reggae artists and African Reggae artists will have the opportunity to collaborate with them.

Some of the artists to perform at the event are Pacino, B’Clean, Crucial Bankie, Heph B, Jennifer Lou, Ledo, Black Mojah, DJ Silentkilla, Karamel Singer, Big Bob, Ras Udara Most High, Lioness Front, Ras Julian, Black Omolo, Anaetoh Peter, Ital Sounds, Pupayanns,” he noted.

Other speakers, Chief Vincent Omoko, the President of African Music Awake foundation, told Nigerian Tribune that Reggae music was the best platform to reunite Africans, enlighten youths against ethno religious crisis, attacks, robbery, and other vices, while the traditional ruler of Aroh, Idemili North LGA, assured that monarchs were ready to use the platform to reach people at the grassroots.

Looted Artifacts to be returned to Nigeria by British University.

This image made available by Jesus College Cambridge on Thursday Nov. 28, 2019, shows a bronze statue of a cockerel. Cambridge University in Britain says it will return the bronze statue that was looted from what is now Nigeria more than a century ago. Governments and institutions in the West are under growing pressure to return artifacts taken decades or centuries ago, especially from Africa.

A bronze statue that was looted from what is now Nigeria more than a century ago will be returned, Cambridge University in Britain said, as Nigeria’s government announced a new campaign Thursday for the return of the West African nation’s looted and smuggled artifacts from around the world.

The cockerel was taken in 1897 from the Court of Benin and given to the university several years later. The statue was removed from public view in 2016 after students protested, saying it represented a colonial narrative.

Nigeria’s minister of information and culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, welcomed the return of the cockerel, especially the role of the students in bringing about the repatriation of the bronze statue.

However, he called the decision to return the statue a “drop in the ocean” considering that hundreds of Benin Bronze pieces were taken after Benin City was occupied by British imperial troops in 1897.

Mohammed said Nigeria would be coming for all those holding Nigeria’s cultural property anywhere in the world, using all legal and diplomatic instruments available.

“Those who looted our heritage resources, especially during the 19th century wars, or those who smuggled them out of the country for pecuniary reasons, have simply encouraged the impoverishment of our heritage and stealing of our past,” he said.

The government also considers the artifacts critical components to leverage on the culture and tourism sector, he said.

Governments and institutions in the West are under growing pressure to return artifacts taken decades or centuries ago, especially from Africa. Some have begun assessing their collections and discussing next steps to take

Last year a report commissioned by French President Emmanuel Macron recommended that French museums give back works taken without consent, if African countries request them.

The experts who presented the report estimated that up to 90% of African art is outside the continent, including statues, thrones and manuscripts. Thousands of works are held by just one museum, the Quai Branly Museum in Paris, opened in 2006 to showcase non-European art — much of it from former French colonies.

Since the French report, Congo, Senegal and Ivory Coast have also requested the return of artifacts.

Earlier this month, France restored to Senegal a sword that had belonged to 19th century Islamic scholar Omar Saidou Tall, who led an anti-colonial struggle against the French.

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe visited Senegal to hand the sword to President Macky Sall.

Last week The Open Society Foundations, an international grant-making organization founded by billionaire George Soros, announced a four-year, $15 million initiative to help repatriate cultural objects to African nations.

Meet QWP2019 Judge, A. Igoni Barret

He is the recipient of a Chinua Achebe Center Fellowship, a Norman Mailer Center Fellowship, and a Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center Residency.

His short story collection, Love Is Power, or Something Like That, was chosen as a “best book of 2013” by NPR. In 2014 he was named on the Africa 39 list of writers aged under 40 with potential and talent to define future trends in African literature.

In 2014, he was named on the Africa 39 list of writers aged under 40 with potential and talent to define future trends in African literature.

His first novel, Blackass, published in 2015, was nominated for the PEN Open Book Award, the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, the FT/OppenheimerFunds Emerging Voices Awards, the Kitschies Golden Tentacle Award, and the Nommo Award for Best Novel.

In 2016, his novel Blackass was selected by the Chinese Foreign Literature Society as a winner of its 21st Century Best Foreign Novel Award. Barrett has twice served as a judge for the Graywolf Press Africa Prize.

QWPWinner 2019 to be announced December 15. Make a date.

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