By Amgbare Ekaunkumor, Yenagoa
In a bid to boost music tourism economy of Bayelsa State and preserve the music ecosystem, Chairman of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Bayelsa State Council, Comrade Samuel Numonengi has called for the inauguration of an “Ijaw Music Hall of Fame” to celebrate music legends, across the Ijaw nation.
Comrade Numonengi however regretted that though the ethnic nationality has produced several music legends, there has not been concerted efforts towards recognising them, adding that music brings multiple dividends such as advancing artistic and cultural growth, strengthening th community’s social fabric and creating jobs to boost economic activity and tourism spending.
The State NUJ Chairmen who stated this shortly after having an audience with organisers of Bayelsa Musical Artistes Awards (BMAA) in his office at the Ernest Ikoli Press Centre Yenagoa, over the weekend, maintained that a vibrant music economy creates wealth and prosperity for all, particularly the youthful segment of the society.
He said music remains a key factor that makes people want to live and work in a city, giving it an edge in attracting and retaining talent in all fields, including businesses and investment.
In his remark, Director-General of the newly inaugurated Ernest Ikoli Visitor Information Centre who also doubles as pioneer chairman of the Travel Writers Corps of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Bayelsa State Council, Comrade Piriye Kiyaramo called on relevant authorities, businesses, community groups and the creative sector to tap into the power of music to drive the creative and cultural industries.
According to Comrade Kiyaramo, music tourism generates billions of dollars for cities every year in other climes, reiterating that music tourism encourages municipalities of all sizes around the world to tap into the power of local music to sustain cohesive, vibrant and wealthy community life.
While stressing the urgent need to develop a music tourism strategy that can serve the entertainment tastes all age groups, engaging younger audiences, ensuring they develop a lifelong love of music, he pointed out that a comprehensive framework of strategies and global best practices will help cities Yenagoa attract more tourists and social investments.
Earlier, Proprietor of the Bayelsa Musical Artistes Awards (BMAA), Walter Wisdom Baraladei, had informed the NUJ chairman that this year’s award promises to be grand because of the number of high level endorsements from both private and public sectors, including local government chairmen and other top government functionaries within and outside the state.
Mr. Baraladei said the upcoming Bayelsa Musical Artistes Awards is an annual music event, designed to support the aspirations of creative individuals who have distinguished themselves in their chosen musical careers/professions with a vision of inspiring artistes to uphold the principles of originality, creativity and style in their craft.
In attendance at the meeting were the brand manager, Miss Quin Binah Jokori and Secretary of BMAA board, Miss Farida Ebitimi Emerson.