The National President, Society of Nigeria Theatre Artist (SONTA), the umbrella body of Theatre Arts lecturers in Nigerian Tertiary Institutions, Sunday Ododo, who is a Professor of Theatre Arts at the University of Maiduguri, Borno State, has described the hosting of SONTA 2015 International Conference by the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), the 28th edition of the conference, as historic and full of expectations.
Professor Ododo, who made this known in a statement released ahead of the first SONTA EXCO-NICO Interactive Meeting, scheduled to hold in Abuja on Saturday, 28th February, 2015, said the hosting is historic because it is the first time in the history of the Society that a government agency will be hosting its Annual Conference.
His words: “NICO hosting SONTA 2015 is historic because it’s the first time any government agency will so host our annual conference and AGM. All our members are full of expectations for an innovative conference, especially given the antecedents of NICO in packaging and engaging public discourses in cultural orientation.”
While expressing confidence for a rewarding meeting with the Local Organising Committee (LOC), Ododo emphasised that his confidence is not just because the convener, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, who is also a visiting Associate Professor, Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), has assured of a hospitable and fun-filled meeting, but more on the awareness, adding that: “There is excellent team spirit propelling the work of the LOC under the dynamic leadership of the Director of Admin, NICO, Barr. Abayomi Oyelola, mni.”
He further said that on the whole, the umbrella body of theatre scholars in Nigeria believes that, the successful outcome of NICO hosting the SONTA Conference would attract other government agencies in the culture, media and entertainment industries to partner SONTA in some other laudable projects.
It will be recalled that the hosting right of the 2015 edition of the Society of Nigeria Theatre Artists (SONTA) Annual Conference was granted to National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) at the 27th edition of the conference at the University of Lagos in August 2014, and the LOC has fixed 5-6 August, 2015, for the conference at the Shehu Yar’Adua Centre, Abuja-FCT.
Nwagbo Pat Obi & Caleb Nor
NICO HQ, ABuja-FCT