Soyinka Makes Case For Lagos @ 50 Celebration | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Soyinka Makes Case For Lagos @ 50 Celebration

Posted: Jun 12, 2016 at 1:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Yemi Adebisi

Chairman, Lagos @50 Committee, Professor Wole Soyinka has said that though his team is ready for the take off of the cultural festival, they are facing obvious financial constraints.

Addressing the media on Wednesday June 9, 2016 at the Freedom Park Lagos, Soyinka said the proposed programme is enriched with varieties of event which include film show, sight and sound of Lagos, exhibitions, performances among others.

On the rumoured expenses made by the committee, Soyinka stated that the media and the public should allow the group to do their job and stop speculating on unfounded rumour.

“Let the committee do their job. We haven’t spent any money.  No member of the committee has spent N1 so far. If any money was spent before now, it could only be during the inauguration of the committee. We have set up canopies according to Ibile divisions. Until the take off of the programme event, don’t be assured that fund has been released. The framework is there even if it is going to be only one bisco,” he said.

Soyinka said the celebration was a series of socio-cultural and political events lined up by the Lagos State Government to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the creation of the state, denouncing the speculation that the celebration would run for 365 days.

The Nobel laureate told newsmen that some group of people had put out a paid advertorial in newspapers with misleading information about the scope of the “Lagos at 50” celebration.

Soyinka also clarified that Lagos State government is not the only financier, that some corporate bodies and interest groups are involved.

“If Governor Ambode wanted to celebrate the whole year round, I’ll carry a placard and ask for him to be impeached,” he said.

Soyinka added that rather than spread falsehood about the scope of the celebration, people should wait until events were proposed and advertised.

He also said that the opposition to the composition of the committee might be as a result of the wrong insinuation that the committee had “a pot of gold” from which to celebrate the whole year round, explaining that apart from funds provided for the inauguration of the committee, no fund had been disbursed to the committee so far.

He said part of the job of the committee was to help raise funds for the celebration, assuring that the operations of the committee would be done with utmost transparency.