As a medium of expressing support towards the upcoming international events that will take place in Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari affirmed that his administration permits media freedom and freedom of expression in the country. He further mentioned that hosting the events give the country an opportunity to display its robust heritage in culture, arts, tourism, entertainment, and improvement of media freedom. The three major international events are the 2022 UNESCO Global Media Information Literacy (MIL) Week, to be held in Abuja, by October; the first Global Conference on Cultural Tourism And Creative Industry, to be held in Lagos; and the 2nd Global Association of Literary Festivals Conference, to be held in Abeokuta, by November.
The UNESCO Global Media and Information Literacy Week, celebrated annually, is organized for stakeholders for the reviewing and celebration of the achieved progress towards ‘Media and Information Literacy for All.’ The theme for this year’s commemoration, “Nurturing trust: A Media and Information Literacy Imperative,” focuses on trust and solidarity in relation to people, media, digital platforms, governments, private sectors, and non-governmental organizations. It also reveals promising actions that connect with media and information literacy in the previous year and ways by which media and information literacy nurtures trust and counters mistrust.
Nigeria was awarded the hosting rights for the 1st UNWTO.
At the 64th meeting of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Commission for Africa that was held in Cape Verde, in September 2021, Nigeria was honored with the hosting rights for the first UNWTO Global Conference, with the theme “Linking Tourism, Culture and the Creative Industries – Pathways to Recovery and Inclusive Development.” The conference aims at identifying, developing, and promoting stronger partnership between tourism, culture and the creative industries to aid inclusive growth and social development.
The Global Association of Literary Festivals, likewise, is a conference that connects the literature festivals of the world in a spirit of cooperation, exchanging ideas and resources. The theme for #UWRF22 is ‘Memayu Hayuning Bawana,’ a Javanese philosophy which means to maintain the safety, peace, happiness and well-being of the real world and hereafter. The conference, being the second of its kind, will be hosted by Nigeria, and will be held in Abeokuta, by November 2022.
The president assures international visitors of hospitality.
The Media Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari, Femi Adesina, on the behalf of His Excellency, appreciated the decisions of UNESCO, The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), and the Global Association of Literary Festivals, to permit Nigeria to host their historic events. He also gave his word to them, assuring them of warm and hospitable Nigerians. Through recognition of the essential roles occupied by information literacy and media education in sustainable development, the president stated that Nigeria would attract positive international attention, being a country that encourages media freedom and freedom of expression.
The president, in regards to the first Global Conference on Cultural Tourism and Creative Industry, stated that the fast growing pace of the film, fashion, music, and ICT sector of Nigeria and the increased international appeal and acceptance would encourage the government into devoting more resources to the sector. In respect to this fact, he mentioned that the Creative Industry Financing Initiative (CIFI), an establishment of his administration, under the management of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in collaboration with the Bankers’ Committee achieved the provision of single-digit financing to many young Nigerians in the fashion, film, music, and ICT fields.
His Excellency appeals to Nigerians to be friendly, peaceful, and loving.
In addition to efforts made to empower the fashion, film, music, and ICT sector, His Excellency said that a $100 million re-development of the National Theatre, Lagos, into a world-class Creative Park was ongoing, following its handover to the CBN and the Bankers’ Committee. He was also hopeful that the literary world would find things worthy of celebration, about Nigeria, when they converge in the historic city of Abeokuta. Moreover, expressing his delight towards the hosting of the international events, he appealed to all Nigerians to exhibit friendliness, peace, and love.