By Aluzu Ebi Augustine
YENAGOA – As preparation for this year’s izon peace festival gets underway, the President of Izonfest Development Foundation have stated that guests will be thrilled to an exciting event of unique izon sports activities.
The festival which had its debut and second edition in 2013 and 2017 respectively featured different kind of traditional sports and games including; canoe racing, dance competition, draft playing, traditional wrestling, seminars as well as arts exhibitions, will be having its third edition this year from 27th of September to 1st of October.
The festival is an initiative of IzonFest Development Foundation, a socio-cultural group which aim is to promote the unity in diversity of the Izon language speaking people of the Niger Delta region of Nigeria.
Speaking to newsmen after the socio-cultural group paid a courtesy visit to Prof Ebiegberi Alagoa in yenagoa on the 24th Day of August 2018, the President, Aniso Abraham esq. called on all traditional sports lovers to honour this year’s event as it promises to be very entertaining.
Aniso said the event will showcase the tourism potentials of the izon nation as it will be 5 days of fun and entertainment starting on world tourism day.
He also stated that the events will be in held in solidarity with the United Nation’s World Tourism Organization’s “Tourism for positive change” campaign, which is the theme for this year by the UNWTO.
He hinted that the event will be involving participants from secondary schools in the state. “We will be involving the secondary schools this time around as we hope to provide an alternative away from cultism and drug abuse in secondary school students and consolidate on the achievements of our partners Patriotism Advancement and Community Orientation Network in the campaign against cultism and drug abuse.
“It is our belief that this year’s event will unmask the tourism potentials of Bayelsa state as well as serve as avenue to scout new talents in different sports which the ijaw people are famous for including canoe racing and traditional wrestling.
“This year’s event will be the biggest so far because we are involving a lot of stakeholders.
“We are here today to identify with Prof. Ebiegberi Joe Alagoa who stands tall in ijaw community as a custodian of izon history and culture.
“We will be having a free exhibition stand where young ijaw people can showcase their art and crafts.” He stated.
Prof. Alagoa thanked the group for their innovation and assured them of his much needed support.
The highlight of the visit was the presentation of certificate of patronage by the group to Prof. Alagoa and taking of a group photograph by the group with the emeritus professor to capture the exciting new formed partnership.