The Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) Commission and African Music Festival (AMFEST) are set to partner on creative economy development in the Southwest. This was disclosed at a press conference organized by AMFEST in conjunction with DAWN Commission.
The press conference was held at the office of DAWN Commission in Ibadan at the weekend. The Director General of DAWN Commission, Mr. Seye Oyeleye said the conference was organised to receive reports from AMFEST EXPO project, “one of our partners on the development of creative industries in the region.” He said “the AMFEST EXPO was held in Lagos and Oyo with six countries represented which are Nigeria, United States of America, England, Ghana, Malawi and Benin Republic.”
According to Oyeleye, DAWN is cognizant of the fact that the collaborative efforts of the states to increase the economic viability of the Southwest can be actualized by creating enabling structures and support systems to optimize music and film industry, theatre, cultural festivals, food, tourism, photography and other cultural productions.
He added that the “sector can employ millions of youth if properly coordinated and these are one of the things that AMFEST through what Mr. Kayode Adebayo has been able to put together. We are hoping that it will serve as a template to organize that sector properly and harness the potential.”
The DAWN boss also said that $3.5 billion was generated from cinemas in Nigeria last year while 70 per cent of that sum was from the Southwest, an indication that there is a market for creative industry in the zone.
The AMFEST Expo Project Director, Mr. Kayode Adebayo presented six reports containing data, statistics and analysis for the development of Southwest Nigeria. The reports were on music, film, food, fashion and creative arts. The sixth one was a recommendation for the AMFEST EXPO project to the governors in the Southwest states.
Adebayo explained that AMFEST was not created to make profit but to help create an economy from creativity for the western region.
His words: “The AMFEST EXPO project is not profit driven, it is more of been able to bring assets together and create an economy. There are assets which are not properly channeled. This project generally is trying to bring such assets together while getting the government to pay attention to them.”
His continued: “AMFEST EXPO has chosen to be strongly involved in developing and advocating for a creative economy because on that platform we cater for practitioners in the Music industry, Film industry, Food industry, Fashion industry, Creative art and Technology.
“What we have done all this while is to bring the practitioners together under intellectual discuss. And along that we have been gathering data, putting statistics together and drawing analysis as regards these industries. So that one way or the other, people like DAWN Commission that have the ears of the executives in the southern states are able to take this report we have put together and present it to them. Policy making opportunity can start from there and then public service intervention.
The reports will be presented to all the six Southwest states of Ekiti, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, and Oyo with DAWN commission explaining how states can generate revenue using the reports.
“We’ll start with any state that is ready to accept the idea,” Oyeleye said.