Afro-Brazilian Cultural Centre set to boost heritage tourism
Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has identified Nigeria’s century old heritage relationship with Brazil, noting that time has come to give the initiative an economic boost through cultural tourism.
Speaking at the unveiling of the Afro Brazilian Cultural Centre in Brazilian Quarters, Popo Aguda, Lagos Island, last Monday, the Minister noted that the centre would not only preserve the historical narratives of Afro-Brazilian descendants but also would encourage and foster deep relationship with the government and people of Brazil.
Alhaji Lai Mohammed represented by the Director General, National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC), Otunba Segun Runsewe, explained that the first generation of Nigerians who were taken by the Portuguese slave merchants, left an enduring legacies of Yoruba culture, which today, has become a veritable platform of cultural and historical relationship between Nigeria and Brazil.
While appreciating the support and recognition of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in the ongoing efforts by Brazilian Descendants Association (BDA) in preserving the history and architecture of Afro-Brazilians in Lagos Island, the minister stated that the window of relationship sustained by this thriving community d would get Federal Government’s assistance, especially through the factoring of their iconic festival into Nigeria’s cultural festival calendar.
His words: “I want to thank Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu for the support and encouragement to the Brazilian Descendants Association and for preserving the architecture of Brazilian Descendants community in Lagos Island, dating centuries old.”
Wife of Lagos Governor, Dr. (Mrs.) Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, who cut the tape to open the Afro Brazilian Descendants Centre, praised the efforts of the association and noted that carnival festival celebration in Lagos nay Nigeria, was made manifest by the descendants’ community.
She commended the presence of Alhaji Mohammed and his representative, Runsewe, whom she recognised as the pivot of Nigeria’s cultural diplomacy.
Barrister Lawal Pedro, chairman, Brazil Descendants Association and former solicitor General of Lagos State, explained that a museum of the community would be opened soon at Lagos State University as a way of encouraging studies and research of Brazil descendants in Lagos.
He noted that the centre is geared towards bringing close to the community, easy access to all that needs to be known about historical narratives of Afro-Brazilian descendants in Lagos.