Vice President, Alhaji Chief Sam-Sumana has told the people of Sierra Leone and foreign dignitaries that the country’s culture is very unique and needs to be maintained so that the outside world would identify the country by it. The Vice President made this clarion call whilst speaking at the official inauguration of the first Annual National Cultural Festival at the National Stadium’s Main Bowl on Monday 23rd April 2012. He said the inauguration of the festival was a positive stepping stone for rebranding the unique culture of Sierra Leone that has been dead for so long.
“Our culture has been strangled for many years and this is the time for us to improve it” said VP Sam Sumana.
He went on that Sierra Leoneans have the responsibility to uphold their culture, disclosing further that, the country is rich in culture especially in the areas of dancing, music and singing, history, story-telling, amongst others. He revealed that, the country has the potential and time to rekindle its dead culture, whilst observing that this could only be achieved through unity. According to him, Sierra Leoneans need to put aside their political, religious and regional differences to turn around the country’s culture and help develop the nation.
Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Hon. Victoria Sylvia Saidu-Kamara, informed the gathering that, the country has made History by reviving its culture. She said culture has nothing to do with religion but one’s lifestyle. According to her, many Sierra Leoneans have respect and likeness for foreign culture more than their local culture. This she went on has an adverse effect on the culture of this country.
Hon. Kamara further revealed that, the first inaugurated Annual National Cultural Festival will put this country on the world map, adding that the country has joined other countries in Africa such as Nigeria, The Gambia and Ghana, among others, that are celebrating Annual National Cultural Festivals.
She called on Sierra Leoneans to embrace their culture, whilst further thanking President Koroma for his vision in inaugurating the festival.
The Acting Mayor of the Freetown City Council (FCC), Gibril Kanu, stated that Sierra Leone is going in the right direction in terms of culture. He said the country’s culture is distinct from those of other countries, adding that Sierra Leoneans must be identified with it. He said western culture has pushed away the country’s culture and called on Sierra Leoneans to practice their various cultures.
He thanked the Government, Minister, Deputy Minister and staff of the Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs for reminding Sierra Leoneans of their culture through the planned week-long festival.
© Copyright by Awareness Times
Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.