BY: Vitalis Ugoh, Calabar
As the nation is currently experiencing negativity bordering on insecurity and poor-information space, “Leboku”, a cultural festival, celebrated annually by the Yakurr people of Cross River State festival, is gradually replacing the paradigm shift from anxiety and fear, to being an antidote to stress, balancing emotions and restoring hope and dignity to life.
This laudable initiative is offering opportunity for people to forget their worries and fears, but rather have embraced interesting integrated cultural segments that will take place throughout the celebration in August.
A statement made available press men and signed the Chairman of the Cross River State Tourism Writer’s Association Amb.Florence Kekong and Secretary, Bishop Eyo Charles, states that this year’s cultural unique segment of the Etangala Masquerade Carnival would be attracting a teeming crowd as tourists from both Nigeria and outside the country.
The association commended the Obol Etangala, Chief Okoi Obono-Obla for adding value to the festival by attracting people of all classes to participate in the Etangala Masquerade Carnival, leaving memorable impact on positivity lowering negativity in all its ramifications.
“The celebration provides opportunity to reduce friction and brings estranged friends and families together in a bond of love, the Tourism Writer’s posited”.
“It also, noted that, even as the celebration is just for a couple of weeks as planned and celebrated annually, it leaves people with grateful hearts full of life”.
“Annually, the festival which is celebrated as “Street Carnival “, commences on 31st July , climaxing into the Etangala Masquerade Carnival that takes place on August, 19th, the day, when the Obol of Entanga, Chief Okoi Obono-Obla, leads the World to appreciate the “Stress Reliver, promoting friendship and balancing emotions, the statement added”.
The Tourism Writers’ advised other Nigerian communities to take a cue from the Yakurr people and begin to promote their own cultural festivals as cultural celebrations, like football brings all classes to together to promote love and unity in diversity.
It therefore, used the occasion to commend Chief Okoi Obono-Obla for using his office as Presidential Aide, to promote the Leboku festival that is gaining higher recognition and appreciation.
Chief Okoi Obono-Obla, a Human Rights Lawyer and Anti-Corruption Crusader, has served in the Buhari administration as Special Adviser to the President on Prosecution and Anti-Corruption.