The Akwanga Local Government Traditional Council in Nasarawa State has nominated the Executive Secretary, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), who is an Associate Professor of Theatre Arts at the Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma for award as Pillar of the Annual Nzeh Mada Festival.

The investiture of the award is scheduled to take place during the celebration of this year’s Nzeh Mada Festival, beginning from Wednesday, 23rd-27th March, 2016 in the historic town of Akwanga, Nasarawa State, on the theme “Celebrating Nature’s Gifts.”

A letter addressed to the ES of NICO, dated 23rd February, 2016, captioned, “Nomination As Pillar Of Nzeh Mada Festival” and signed by His Royal Highness, Samson Gamu Yare, the Chun Mada III, said Ayakoroma’s choice for the award was informed by Mada people’s appreciation of his long pedigree as an astute cultural administrator and role model for their youths as well as his participation in past editions of the festival.

The letter reads in part “Your Choice as Pillar of the Festival is informed by our deep appreciation of your long pedigree as an astute administrator and role model for most of our youths. Your participation in the 2014 and 2015 editions of the festival has particularly endeared you to Mada youths.”

Nzeh Mada Festival is an age-long colourful event, where the Mada people and well-wishers unite to celebrate God’s blessings in the previous year and also solicit His continuous support in the new planting season; and it was redefined in 2014 as a trado-modern tourist event, which now holds every Easter season in Akwanga metropolis.

It is worthy of note that for the past two editions of the festival, the NICO Boss has not only availed himself, but actively participated in the activities lined up for the festival.

In the 2015 edition of the festival, he was the keynote speaker, where he delivered a mind-blowing lecture, entitled, “Developing a Festival Brand: Towards a Blue Print for Nzeh Mada in Nasarawa State.”

Caleb Nor

Corporate Affairs Unit

NICO, Abuja