The Lagos State Acting Commissioner and Special Adviser for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Adebimpe Akinsola has reiterated the commitment of the State Government to the upliftment of theatre arts in Lagos, saying a clear demonstration of this resolve is the proposed establishment of six theatre-arts centres to be operated and managed by the private sector.
Mrs. Akinsola stated this while speaking at the opening symposium of the 2017 edition of the Lagos Theater Annual Festival organised by the British Council at the National Arts Theater, Iganmu, Lagos, with the theme, “Rhythm of the City”.
She emphasized that the present administration has equally strengthened the capacity of the State Council for Arts and Culture established for the propagation, promotion and preservation of Arts and culture in Lagos.
The Acting Commissioner maintained that the State Government will continue to invest in the industry as part of efforts to promote and improve tourism in the State.
Earlier, the representative of the Minister of Information and Culture, Mr George Ufot, commended the State Government for investing in infrastructure to boost all genres of the theatre profession, especially the proposed plan to build six theatres across the five administrative divisions of the State and support for the renovation of the National Arts Theatre.
He informed the gathering that the main hall of the National Theatre will soon reopen after 25 years of closure due to decay and malfunction of the facilities.
The Lagos Theatre Festival, which will hold for six days and feature different performances in comedy, fashion, design, theatre, dance and music, was founded by the British Council in 2013 as part of the desire to foster exchange and collaboration between the Nigerian and British Theatre.
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The Lagos State Government, through the Ministry of Youth and Social Development, has called on parents, guardians and the Nigeria Police Force to opt for alternative methods of rehabilitating children in conflict with the law rather than sending them to remand homes.
Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, the State Commissioner in the Ministry, made the call at a Community Rehabilitation programme organized by the Ministry, in collaboration with UNICEF, for stakeholders in Ilupeju, Odi-Olowo Local Council Development Area of the State.
Represented at the event by Mrs. Giwa Ododo, Programme Co-ordinator in the Ministry, the Commissioner explained that the new programme was initiated and designed for juvenile and under-age children who have committed minor offences, stressing that the implementation of a pilot programme will soon commence.
In his remarks, the representative of UNICEF at the programme, Dr. Wilfred Momah, said the children in conflict with the law should be sent to designated centres for counseling, community service or vocational training as against prison or correctional homes.
He pointed out that delinquent children could still be reformed and integrated into the society by creating activities that would help them live a responsible life and return back to their family.
While imploring the participants and stakeholders to be conversant with the happenings in their community, Wilfred educated them on the State Child Right Law that projects a child as immature before the law.
Similarly, the Sole Administrator of Odi-Olowo LCDA, Mr. Adekunle Julius, warned parents and guardians to stop the use of force in correcting their children but rather explore other options of checkmating negative behaviour.
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The Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, has stated that Nigeria has for long failed to accord technical and vocational education the required attention, leading to near extinction of technicians who constitute a critical mass of the technological workforce of any nation.
The Governor stated this at the maiden graduation ceremony of the Master Craftsman Project, an initiative of the State government geared towards ameliorating the dearth of skilled technicians of Nigerian origin in the build industry.
Represented by the Commissioner for Wealth Creation & Employment, Mr. Babatunde Durosinmi-Etti, the Governor said that the unsavory situation in which services of artisans such as carpenters, steel fabricators, plumbers, electricians, painters, and tilers are being sourced outside our borders as a result of wide skill, ethical and professional gaps will be redressed by this initiative.
He stated that the State government will empower each certified Master Craftsman with the tools of their trade and work-gears while their names and area of specialty will be uploaded on-line to a database of registered Master Craftsmen that can be easily accessed by members of the public who may require their services.
While congratulating the graduands, Governor Ambode challenged them to continually improve on the knowledge acquired bearing in mind the age long saying that the largest room in life is the room for improvement.
Earlier, the Commissioner for Housing, Prince Gbolahan Lawal stated that the initiative, which commenced eight months ago, was intended to create a platform through which 4,000 artisans and workers in the industry would receive certificates after being trained to acquire 21st Century skills.
Lawal revealed that graduands were trained for six weeks by highly certified trainers from NIOB (Nigeria Institute of Building), CORBON (Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria) and LASTVEB (Lagos State Technical and Vocational Education Board) based on the National Vocational Qualification Framework (NVQF).”
The Commissioner informed that the State government placed great emphasis on the training because out of the 200 that registered in the first batch, only 170 are graduating today for participating actively in all classroom activities and hands-on practical while they also met the 60% attendance criteria required for graduation.
He also revealed that Ecostone Management Corporation is at an advanced stage of a Public Private Partnership with the State government on affordable and accessible housing for low and medium income earners.
The Ecosotone Management team, led by Mr. Emmanuel Stefaualis, was present at the ceremony and expressed willingness to engage the participants in training on the latest technology in the industry.
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