Heritage Bank supports creative industry for economic growth
by HOPE MOSES-ASHIKE
October 5, 2017 | 1:41 am| | | Start Conversation
Heritage Bank Plc is speedily stimulating revenue diversification through support for the Nigerian creative industry towards sustainable, persistent growth as alternative to crude oil.
Ifie Sekibo, managing director/CEO of the bank, stated this at the Exhibition Gallery of National Museum Benin by the National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM) in collaboration with the Edo State Government, and the Smithsonian Institute, United States of America, which Heritage Bank was the lead sponsors.
The exhibition focused on photographic works of Solomon Alonge, photographer to Royal Court of Benin kingdom during the reign of Oba Akenzua II.
Represented by Jude Monye, an executive director of the bank, the CEO affirmed: “the art and culture industry has become one of the major contributors to so many countries gross domestic products (GDP) and Heritage Bank is committed to supporting it because it is part of Nigeria’s heritage.”
According to him, Heritage Bank has continued to make efforts in supporting ideologies like this, through the use of arts as a tool to promote cultural awareness and to help younger Nigerians form a strong sense of National identity.
He assured that the bank would always be driven by cultural heritage in delivering distinctive financial services to create, preserve and transfer wealth.
In his presentation, Lai Mohammed, Nigeria’s minister of information and culture, called on states to emulate Edo in collaborating with the federal government to promote culture, tourism and the arts.
The minister, who was represented by Yusuf Usman, director general of the National Commission for Museums and Monuments, said synergy amongst corporate bodies, states and the federal government would guarantee diversification of Nigeria’s economy whilst showcasing its rich culture.
He commended Heritage Bank, Smithsonian Institute, US Embassy and others for the exceptional supports in making a huge success of the Exhibition Gallery at the National Museum Benin by the NCMM.
Edo State, Gov Godwin Obaseki, while appreciating the Smithsonian Institution, said the exhibition would add to state’s quest to develop tourism as it makes a connection between past and present.
The governor said art was assuming a wider national importance and the possibility of it being developed as a self-sustaining alternative to oil revenue was now being appreciated across the country.
Earlier, US Ambassador to Nigeria Stuart Symington described the occasion as historic to both Nigeria and America.
The high point of the event was the launching of the book “Fragile Legacies,” the photographs of Solomon Osagie Alonge, and a tour of the exhibition area by Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo State.
The Director Emerita, Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art, USA, Johnnetta Cole, said that the exhibition was first in Africa and to showcase the rich culture of Benin kingdom.
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