By Taiye Olayemi
The Lagos State Government has begun the construction of a cultural village at Ijan in Alimosho Local Government Area of the state.
Speaking at the ground-breaking ceremony of the cultural village on Saturday, Mrs Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf, Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, said the project would activate the rich, diverse culture and heritage resources in Alimosho.
This, she said would promote the sustainable development of tourism as a viable sector of the economy.
According to her, upon completion, the centre will position Lagos as the next tourism destination as it is expected to attract tourists to Lagos and increase the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the state.
“The idea of the cultural village is to replicate how the Yoruba people used to live in the past before the modern times and as a way of preserving our culture for the younger generation.
“It is designed to attract tourists from the diaspora, the project will include a traditional Oba’s palace with a complete yoruba cultural setting.
“There will be shrines for the celebrated Yoruba traditional gods like Ogun, Obatala and Sango among others.
“The village will also feature a research centre, a museum for the display of cultural artefacts, and shops for adire makers where visitors can also have their adire materials sown into a boubou while waiting,” she said.
Akinbile-Yusuf noted that tourists could also visit salons to have their hair made in the traditional style or eat at restaurants that will serve local cuisines and palm wine among others.
Bisi Yusuf, Chairman, Lagos State House of Assembly Committee on Commerce, Industries and Cooperatives, said the project had been in the pipeline and would be sustained by the community.
He expressed gratitude to the Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture for seeing the larger picture and realising the project’s tourism potential for the state.
“The cultural village is a project that can transform the community, create jobs and boost commercial activities while engendering prosperity for the inhabitants of the area,” he said.
Mrs Bola Sobowale, Chairman of Ayobo-Ipaja Local Council Development Area, commended Gov. Sanwo-Olu for commencing the project.
Sobowale said that it would urther development in the area and transform it into an important tourism site.
She assured the state government of the support and cooperation of all indigenes of the community, saying that everybody was looking forward to the speedy completion of the project. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Benson Iziama/Folasade Adeniran