Bayelsa varsity VC advocates modern branding of Nigeria’s arts, culture for export

Acting Vice-Chancellor of the University of Africa Toru-Orua, Bayelsa State, Prof. Barclays Ayakoroma has advocated an innovative approach to branding Nigeria’s arts and culture products for increased export.

In a statement on Tuesday by his media aide, Tonye Yemolegha, the acting VC said that increased exports of such products would shore up earnings and gross domestic product.

Mr Ayakoroma said that the increase could be achieved through cultural rejuvenation and the deliberate generational transfer of cultural talents.

According to him, the increase can also be achieved through adequate investment by governments to fully harness the abundant cultural tourism potential.

He said that the Annang Festival of Arts and Culture recently held in the state, along with similar programmes, needed holistic transformation for global competitiveness.

Mr Ayakoroma noted that reinventing culture as a gateway to national development also entailed the introduction of entrepreneurial components that would drive dependency for sustenance and the expansion of the culture and arts sectors.

He said that the cultural policy of any country would remain a strong binding factor that would enhance nationalism and unity.

 He called for a continuous review of Nigeria’s cultural policy, which, he noted, was signed in August 1988 by then-Gen. Ibrahim Babangida.

“Culture is a vital component of national development as it is a tool for driving economic growth, social cohesion, peaceful coexistence, and political stability.

“We must, therefore, explore every channel to tap into it,” Mr Ayakoroma said.