By Vivian Onyebukwa
It was a showcase of creativity and style at the 8th edition of the Pan Africa Music Fashion Runway And Game Changer Africa Acknowledgement Awards, held at the Naval Dockyard, Lagos.
The annual occasion came under the theme, “Fashion Forward: A Call To Action For A Green And Sustainable Continent’’, and featured national and international fashion designers and runway models. It was a cultural showcase platform blending contemporary Pan African designers, international runway models, cutting edge fashion, with live music.
The programme was also streamed live through different social media platforms.
Speaking at the occasion, the Director General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Chinyere Almona urged the federal government to focus on entertainment industry by creating an enabling environment for business creation and growth.
Almona admonished the government to collaborate with the private sector to address the long-term effects of the Corona Virus pandemic on the sector and leverage development financial institutions like Bank of Industry (BOI) to support the sector through innovative financing.
The DG equally encouraged private sector players to keep their focus and creativity, adding that the greatest asset in the industry is the peculiar human instinct Nigerian youth possess.
She commended NMO Management Limited, organisers of the event for their vision towards making Nigeria a global leader in the entertainment sector. She noted that the nation’s cultural heritage in fashion, designs, arts, film and music presently has great impact on the industry, maintaining that the culture and creative industry has been driving innovation and creativity over the past decades. “Nigeria is a fast-growing hub for film production with a huge success story to tell about Nollywood, music, arts and fashion. Available data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that the arts, entertainment and recreation industry contribute about 0.2 to GDP, a significant improvement from 0.04 in the 1990s”.
She went further to say that the sector’s growth rate has been positive since the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. She described Nigeria as a huge market for the creative industry with the population of about 209 million, growing customer base patronising the local industry, growing digital economy and e-commerce, and rising number of people who want to build their career in the entertainment industry.
The Managing Director, NMO Management Limited, Dr Ngozi Omambala while speaking, explained that the programme was aimed at empowering and uniting young Pan African creatives, describing the occasion as the Nigeria’s most influential fashion brand. “The annual event celebrates African rich cultural heritage and also features the Game Changer Africa Acknowledgement (GCAA) awards platform programme that honours trailblazers and pioneers, recognising their significant contributions in the creative industry.”
Dr Omambala equally expressed gladness at the return of their physical event after two years of online predominance due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some of the designers lauded the organisers of the event and described it as an opportunity to showcase their God- given talents.
Dr Omambala however, hinted that the cultural fashion showcase is set to hold in December 2023 for its 9th edition.