Bayelsa state, ‘The Glory of all Lands’, has bagged the overall first position at the National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFEST) competitive events.
The competitive events were on traditional cuisines, arts and crafts, essay writing, quiz, traditional board game, indigenous fabrics and fashion parade, indigenous music, archery and coral competitions.
Ekiti state and Rivers states emerged in the 2nd overall position, Plateau state bagged 3rd position, Kano and Enugu states had the fourth position, while Delta, Kaduna states and the Federal Capital Territory bagged the fifth position.
The results were announced during the closing ceremony of the 33rd edition of NAFEST which held at the Rwang Pam Township Stadium, Jos, Plateau state.
Mr. Andrew Kirifagha, Director, Bayelsa state Council for Arts and Culture, expressed his excitement over the state’s victory.
Kirifagha said he was not surprised as the state had been preparing for the various cultural competitions since August and lots of revenue had gone into the preparation.
He appreciated the National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC), and the Plateau state government for hosting the ancient festival even as COVID-19 pandemic ravaged the world.
He said the state’s victory would further gear them to do more in promoting culture.
“I am excited for the victory achieved today, but I’m not surprised because we have been practicing since August, we have done a lot to deserve this victory.
“We will work hard on cultural promotion to maintain our status.
“We are grateful to Plateau state for its hospitality. We really enjoyed our stay in the state,” he said.
Earlier, Otunba Segun Runsewe, NCAC Director-General, commended the efforts of the Plateau government  in hosting the festival.
He said Gov. Simon Lalong had successfully put Plateau state on the global map of tourism, calling on Nigrians to visit the state and explore the abundance of its tourism and culture potential.
“Plateau is a safe place, I call on tourists and investors to visit the state for tourism and investment purposes.
“Let us make Plateau our Dubai, Jos is a place to be, so hospitable and beautiful weather.”
The week long festival which commenced on Nov. 22 and ended on Nov. 28 had 26 states participating in various cultural competitions and displays.
The theme of the festival was “COVID-19 and Cultural Dynamism.”