Ekene Okafor, Lagos
Manufacturers of local fabrics and those in the fashion business will soon have cause to smile following renewed commitment by the National Council for Arts and Culture to reposition the sector.
The NCAC which has already taken the lead in the promotion of indigenous fabrics is set to expand the scope by adopting new strategies to empower local fabric producers and fashion designers in the country.
This development was made know by the Director-General, Otunba Segun Runsewe when he received a delegation from Bridge Concepts led by its leader, Congress man Bimbo Daramola.
Speaking during the visit, Mr. Bimbo noted that the group were in NCAC to collaborate with the Council on his idea, “The Fabrics of Nigeria” which will see the elevation of indigenous fabrics to global prominence.
He said, “We intend to bring all the fabrics of Nigeria like adire, Ankara, etc to global limelight just as we also came to commend the DG who has always demonstrated a Midas touch everywhere he has been starting from National Orientation Agency to the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation and now NCAC with excellence all the way.”
He extolled Runsewe for his initiative in using local fabrics for playing golf saying the idea was novel and has gained international grip.
He also commended the NCAC Boss for taking the fight against moral decadence to characters like Bobrisky who are negating the cultural identity of Nigeria.
Daramola who established the Public Relations outfit 22 years ago, recalled that they designed the logo used at the 2003 Common Wealth Heads of Government meeting in Abuja with Runsewe responsible for its huge success especially in publicity.
“The fabrics of Nigeria project seeks to get all stakeholders on board including global players because the industry is a low hanging fruit. Without fabrics and garments, there is no fashion, even President Buhari is a product of the fabrics industry. Nigeria will again stamp it’s presence in international platforms,” says Daramola.
He concluded by soliciting for the government’s buy-in and NCAC’s support.
For his part, Runsewe said he had always nursed the idea of popularising Nigerian fabrics as evident in the Adire bags, shoes, backpacks and pouches which the council currently produces in partnership with local manufacturers.
He expressed commitment to the idea proposed by Bridge Concepts recalling his introduction of “Nigeria dress culture” in 2010 using purely made in Nigeria fabrics to encourage the industry and create jobs for Nigerians.
He further assured the delegation of his support by creating a workable template that will project the Nigerian dress culture across board saying, “we will start with a joint press briefing where all media personalities in attendance will wear local fabrics on the day. We have already set up NCAC tailoring centres across Nigeria and with this collaboration, we shall achieve 3 things: build capacity, employ more Nigerians and create wealth,” Runsewe stated.