The Minister of Tourism, Culture and National Orientation, Edem Duke, on Monday in Abuja said 100 cities across the country would be designated as national monuments.
The minister he inaugurated the National Heritage Council and Endowment for the Arts.
Mr Duke, yet to name the cities, explained that the establishment of the council was geared toward nurturing creativity and preserving the country’s cultural heritage.
“The objective is to underscore the importance of the visual, literary, design, and performing arts in nurturing creativity and preserving our cultural heritage,” Mr. Duke added.
The minister urged the eleven members of the board of the council to identify and support excellence in the arts.
He pointed out that it was necessary for the council to seek alternative source of funding outside the usual annual budgetary provisions in meeting its set objectives.
Edem Duke said the council was expected to secure the necessary resources, provide desired facilities and exercise effective control and application of the funds toward promoting arts.
“The endowment for the arts is therefore being set up as a platform we intend to use to offer support and funding for projects exhibiting artistic excellence,” Mr. Duke said.
He expressed the hope that it would serve as a platform for creative minds to express their natural talents, get employment as well as create jobs. “Nigerians are creating masterpieces in works of arts while our cultural industries are also brimming with activities,” he added.
He said the board has a three-year tenure. The Chairman of the Board of the Council, Igho Sanomi, said the activities of the council would be private-sector driven.
Mr. Sanomi added that the council would ensure a conducive environment and guarantee healthy synergy between it and the private sector.
Other members of the board are Folorunsho Alakija as the Vice Chairman; Emeka Offor; Abdulsamad Rabiu; Omoba Yemisi Shyllon; Daisy Danjuma and Alhaji Abubakar Mohammed. The rest are Nike Okundaye; Emmanuel Nsan; E. Williams and Fifi Ejindu.