FESTAC Africa ‘22 – Destination Zanzibar breaks 45 years’ hiatus, celebrates African culture
- * Nobel laureate, Abdulrazaq Gurnah, to speak at festival
- * Nigeria’s Yinka Abioye chairs firm behind FESTAC ‘22
By Ozoro Opute
FESTAC Africa 2022 – Destination Zanzibar, also known as the World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture, will break the 45-year hiatus in Africa’s global celebration of her arts and culture when it holds in May 2022. This is coming after the continent last held the celebration in Dakar, Senegal in 1966 and Lagos, Nigeria in 1977. The National Theatre, Iganmu, and FESTAC Town, all in Lagos, remain as solid structures and monuments built purposely for the celebration of FESTAC ’77.
Organisers of FESTAC ’22 are therefore inviting interested participants globally to register for the 2022 event, which will take place in Stone Town, Zanzibar, from May 22 to 29 2022 in a 7-day cultural and business fiesta.
FESTAC Africa 2022 – Destination Zanzbiar has as theme ‘Celebrate Your Culture: My Africa! Your Africa! Our Africa! – Network, Explore, Trade & Fun’, with #ActionTheNarrative as kicker that speaks to the many diverse cultures of Africa and the African diaspora through an artistic lens, and invites audiences to imagine the Africa of their desire.
This year’s host country for the event Zanzibar is in partnership with dedicated partners whose stated aim is ‘to bring the continent together and to #ActionTheNarrative. Organisations in partnership with Zanzibar Government for FESTAC ‘22 are Inspire Africa Connect and Zanzibar Association of Tour Operators (ZATO). Other collaborators include Zanzibar Commissioner for Tourism, Zanzibar Association for Tourism Investors (ZATI), Zanzibar National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC), Hotels Association of Zanzibar (HAZ), and AU- ECOSOCC Nigeria.
FESTAC Africa 2022 – Destination Zanzibar is designed to shine a spotlight on art, culture, heritage, poets, literature, talents, travel, hospitality, tourism, hotels, food, fashion, leather products and accessories, jewellery, beading, weaving while exploring the diverse richness from Africa. It will showcase all these through a business expo over three days while the festival overall will be a seven days celebration of our vibrancy while dancing to the rhythm of the African music, live performances celebrating our very own African artists.
The programme includes a business expo, investment forum, golf tournament, food festival, the Africa Day Festival, a vibrant handcraft market, family-friendly performances and more.
Speakers for FESTAC Africa 2022 – Destination Zanzibar include son of the soil and Nobel Prize winner in Literature 2021, Prof. Abdulrazaq Gurnah, Chairman of Zanzibar Association of Tour Operators (ZATO), Mr. Hassan Ali Mzee, Chairman of Zanzibar National Chamber of Commerce, Ali Suleiman Amour, Chairman of Zanzibar Association for Tourist Investors, Mr. Rahim Bhaloo, Chairman of FESTAC Africa, Mr. Yinka Abioye, Inspire Africa Connect Group CEO, Grace Mumo, Executive Secretary, Zanzibar Commission for Tourism, Hafsa Mbamba, Rukiya Wadoud of UNDP, and President’s Office, Labour Economic Affairs and Investment, Zanzibar. Others are Hon. Mudirik Soraga, Executive Director, ZIPA, Hon. Shariff Shriff, CEO of Destination Imagination Africa, Sally Kimangu, Head of Tourism and Culture at AU- ECOSOCC Nigeria, Hon. Hon Quadri-adu Shakir Kehinde as well as AU-ECOSOCC Nigeria Representative, Olasunkamni John Adebusuyi Oba, among others.
The investment forum and business expo will take place on 23 and 24 May. The two segments will provide a platform for engagement and dialogue on emerging and key issues related to investing for sustainable development. The investment forum will look at the public, private and multilateral sectors with the aim of shaping 21st century investment policies in Zanzibar.
The business expo, meanwhile, will present the participants a pipeline of potential deals and a digital platform for investors and project sponsors to profile their investments. Attendees of the event will include various important industry players like diplomats, business leaders and entrepreneurs.
While speaking on a broad range of issues around FESTAC ’22, CEO of Inspire Africa Connect, Grace Mumo said, “We are utilising our common cultural awareness to bring Africans and people of African descent, home and abroad, together to celebrate our culture, our commonalities and improve our intra-Africa trade. There are speakers on arts and culture. There are cultural ambassadors on the list. We are still finalising with speakers, and they will be made known before the end of March.”
Mumo also said her organisation was still in consultation with African heads of government who will attend FESTAC ’22. She also said the African diaspora from North America, Brazil and the Caribbean and East, West, North and South of Africa are also would attend the festival.
“We are in communication with ministries of culture and tourism in a good number of countries and they are curating what their representatives will showcase at the event,” Mumo said. “Without giving too much away, each night the festival over the seven days will focus on culture, music, food and fashion.”
The first FESTAC was held in Dakar, Senegal, in 1966. The second edition was held in 1977 in Lagos, Nigeria, over almost a whole month – celebrating African culture and exposing to the world fine art, literature, drama, dance, religion and music from the continent.
For Exhibition opportunities contact firstname.lastname@example.org and for more details about the festival contact Grace@inspireafricaconnect.com.