The Lagos State government, in collaboration with the African Coconut Heritage Initiatives, is set to host the 7th edition of the Coconut Heritage Festival tagged ‘AGUNKEFEST’ in commemoration of the 2018 World Coconut Day.
The event, scheduled to hold on Sunday, September 2, 2018 at the Suntan Beach Front, Badagry, according to the government, is in accordance with to the state’s calendar of cultural events as released earlier in the year.
Mrs. Aramide Giwanson, special adviser to Governor Akinwunmi Ambode on arts and culture, said in a statement on Friday that the government’s objective for the celebration was to provide an avenue to create awareness on the array of invaluable economic, health and environmental benefits that coconut offers amidst cultural manifestation.
“In addition, the festival intends to draw global attention and beam searchlight on Badagry division of the state, thereby showcasing its rich cultural and traditional values to attract both domestic and international tourists to the division.
“The celebration is also in line with the state government’s vision and commitment to develop every division of the state, as well showcase its cultural and economic potentials to the world,” Giwanson said.
According to her, activities lined-up to celebrate the one-day event, would start with a symposium in the morning on the theme of the celebration, ‘Harnessing Coconut Production for Economic Empowerment and Tourism Development in Lagos State.’
The symposium lecture would be delivered by the Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Institute of Oil Palm Research Benin, Edo State, Dr. Charles Aisagbonhi.
Aisagbonhi is an authority in the coconut industry.
This would be followed with a grand finale ceremony, where all stakeholders in the industry and coconut value chain would exhibit their products, and the day’s event would be rounded off with cultural displays and entertainment amongst different communities in the 57 Local Government Areas (LGAs) and Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) in the state.
The festival, which made its debut in 2009, is meant to yearly celebrate coconut in reminiscence of the first coconut plantation in Nigeria, established by the Roman Catholic Mission on the Topo Island in Badagry in 1876.