The Federal Government says it has successfully enlisted the Kwagh-Hir (Tiv) Theatrical Performance on UNESCO’s representatives’ list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, made this known at the end of the meeting of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) which was chaired by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, on Wednesday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The minister said: “I’m proud to say that today the (Tiv) theatrical performance has been inscribed on the Intangible List of UNESCO.
“This brings to five, the number of such intangible cultural heritages we have. The other four are the Ifa Divination System, which was listed in 2008.
“The Oral Heritage of Gelede, which was also listed in 2008.
“We have the Ejele Masquerade, which was listed in 2009 and we have the Argungu Fishing and Cultural Festival, which was first listed 2016.’’
According to him, the major advantage of having these cultural realities listed is that it draws and attracts tourism traffic and tourists to the country, adding that it attracts funding for the conservation and preservation of this intangible heritage.
He explained that the journey to enlist the Tiv theatrical performance actually started in 2006.
“Those of us who are familiar with Kwagh-Hir, which is the Tiv theatrical performance, is one of the flag-ship of our cultural performances in Nigeria.
“It actually started as a form of storytelling, then dramatised and is supposed to teach morals to our people,” he added.
The minister disclosed that the nation had several other applications before UNESCO, for possible official recognition and enlistment.
Mohammed also revealed that the Council ratified the United Nations Tourism Organisation Framework Convention on Tourism Ethics 2020.
“In my capacity as Minister of Information and Culture, I also presented a memo seeking for the ratification of the United Nations Tourism Organisation Framework Convention on Tourism Ethics 2020.
“In 2019, at St. Petersburg, Russia Federation, the General Assembly of the United Nations Tourism Organisation approved the framework and legal framework of the Convention of Global Ethics on Tourism and I brought a memo to Council today and Council graciously ratified that convention,’’ he said.