From Fred Ezeh, Abuja

Anambra natives in Abuja under the aegis Anambra State Towns People Association (ASTPA) have concluded plans for the successful celebration of the 2021 Anambra cultural day symposium scheduled to hold in Abuja, on Saturday.

Anambra State Governor Willie Obiano, FCT Minister Muhammad Bello and several other dignitaries including royalty from within and outside the state have confirmed their participation in the 2021 Anambra day celebration with the theme “Taa Bu Gboo” (Igbo for “Today is early”)

ASTPA President-General Chief Arinze Anadu told reporters at a pre-event press conference in Abuja, that the objective of the symposium is to provide a platform where stakeholders can openly and sincerely discuss the issues that concern the people of the state and beyond including the political governance.

‘As the theme of the event ‘Taa Bu Gboo’ suggests, we want to remind the people that it’s time to call ourselves to order and begin to do things that would better the lives of people and society in general,’ he said.

‘Anambra people, and by extension, Igbo people are very hardworking people. They make and develop towns or cities they found themselves. However, there are lots of things that need to correct for the sake of future generations.

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‘Competent persons have been selected to make presentations in different areas, while some other experts have been selected for panel discussions. All these are to ensure that the right messages are communicated to our people.’

He apologised for the massive change in the plan for the 2021 event attributing it to changes in time and season. In previous years, it has been a massive carnival where lots of cultural displays are made. But this year, we changed the pattern for lots of reasons.

‘Hitherto, National Stadium, Abuja; Eagle Square, Abuja; old parade ground, Abuja; or any other open places are often used in order to accommodate thousands of people that often attend. But this time, we chose the International Conference Centre, Abuja, because we want a limited crowd, who we would speak to closely and demand that they take the message down to their members.

‘There are over 150 registered town unions in FCT. Throwing the event open to all members of the association at this period (not representatives) is unwise and would be chaotic and also violate the COVID-19 safety protocols, hence we selected a few representatives of the town unions to attend the event.

‘Maybe in subsequent years, we would return to our usual large venue to allow for mass participation and celebration of the rich culture and traditions of Anambra people.’

He confirmed that there would be exhibition stands within the event venue where different towns in Anambra State would display their unique culture, thereby showing the world areas of their strength and uniqueness.