In a bid to promote togetherness and national integration, the special assistance to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Visual Communication Miss Novo Isioro in collaboration with other like minds has put together a photo and visual Arts exhibition tagged ANISZA to mark Nigeria’s 58th Independence Anniversary come October 1st in Abuja.
Speaking at a media briefing in Abuja to herald the launch of the project come October 1st, the coordinator of the project Miss Novo Isioro said the aim of the mobile Arts Exhibition was the promotion of unity among Nigerians especially young citizens using visuals arts as a tool.
ANISZA an acronym coined by combining words from Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba, depicting unity, is a Nigerian idea that is set to address the needless agitations that Nigerians are faced with, fanning the embers of disunity.
In her words “we have seen contestations among adherents of the various religious and ethnic groups in the country. There have been tensions that have been generated because of our differences. But I think that this diversity should be celebrated and not be a problem.
“So I just thought about this tendency towards disunity, and as a visual artist, I understand how image tells the story more than words. So, I thought that we should use pictures to tell the stories of strength in diversity.
“The idea is to use pictures to speak to the people to stop the agitations, the drama, the hate speeches, division and instead work together. This is practically focused on young people. I realized that most people especially the young ones really don’t understand our history.”
Speaking on the sustainability of the initiative, Isioro, said “We are using a mobile gallery so we can take it to the 36 states of the federation with focus on schools.”
She added that “We are collaborating with state governments and federal ministries to take this gallery to schools in their domain to get as many children as possible to benefit from the project. But we are also having an online platform that we will use to keep the message alive.
“But for October 1, we are inviting students from schools across the country. We plan to host the students for three days during which there will be a symposium, an exhibition and a mini-tour.”
Other partners in the project said the initiative would bring to live forgotten values and the essence of maintaining Nigeria’s heritage for the purpose of promoting unity.
One of the partners Mr Melah Bonaventure who is the Managing Editor of Daily Times Nigeria, said the issue of unity in Nigeria is important and as such “Nigeria needs patriotic citizens more than oil because the problem of unity has to come first of all from lack of patriotism.
He said: “No country can achieve greatness when the citizens don’t love the country. “It is only when we bring our various unique differences to the centre that we can form a greater and prosperous nation.”
On his part, Dr Mayo Adediran, a former top FG official on Museums & Archives now a Consultant, said preserving Nigeria’s cultural heritage was as important as promoting the country’s economic potentials.
According to him, “sometimes human memory may fail us but when you put concentrated information in a monument, it becomes a historical fact that jolts our memory each time we walk past.”
For Architect Sarumi Sadiq, one of the technical managers in the group “what we are doing is supposed to excite,” and spark all the senses of unity to see that Nigeria indeed becomes a great nation.”
The Project Manager Murphy Imamezi noted that love is what drives true patriotism and a sense of unity among any people, adding “this is what is at the center of ANISZA.”
President Muhammadu Buhari is expected to declare the exhibition open next Monday October 1.