A Festival of Hope, Potential, Diversity, and Unity
On October 1, members of the AUN community turned out in colorful ethnic attires to celebrate the 57th Nigerian independence anniversary in the Commencement Hall. Leading the festivities was President Dekle, who wore a greenish gown embroidered with white, a perfect mix of Nigeria’s national colors, as she blended in with the locals.
The allure of the outsized hall was not the aesthetics of the seating arrangement, but the medley of colors from the audience’s cultural outfits--the signature of the cultural diversity of the country, and of AUN. The use of Ankara fabric with traditional items for decoration added a very African theme to the ambience.
The gala, which was organized by the Campus Activities Board (CAB) with support from the Office of Student Activities & Involvement (OSAI), recorded a full house.
CAB President Beshi Madwatte, a fourth-year Business Management major, said the event celebrates Nigeria’s diverse cultural heritage. “We have students who are mostly Nigerians. So the celebration is a way of identifying with our country and recognizing its diversity.”
President Dekle was seated with the AVP of HR & Planning, Nourah Bamalli; Dean of Graduate School, Dr. Charles Nche, AVP of security Dr. Lionel Rawlins, and they were joined by students.
The event started with a rendition of the Nigerian national anthem by the Galaxy Band. The crew also entertained the audience with cool vibes that left the audience yearning for more.
Senior Manager, Retail and Business Services, Tunde David Animashaun, spoke on the Importance and Impact of Unity in Nigeria, emphasizing the need for Nigerians to buy made-in-Nigeria goods. For him, a celebration of Nigeria at 57 is a celebration of the nation’s potential. “Let’s make Nigeria great again.”
It was time to loosen up as a dance crew from two female residence halls, AA and CC, gave a delightful performance. Dancers from the Adamawa Arts Council were present and performed Fulani and Bachama dances. The hugs, photo snapshots and swagger enlivened the fun night. The MC spiced it up further with fun facts about Nigeria.
There were cultural processions displaying traditional attires and dance steps of different Nigerian ethnic groups.
The Creativity Club also put in a telling performance that harped on national unity.
Toastmasters Club had a performance where the president, Exploits Nicholas, gave a message of hope to the audience. Chidera Nweke, a second-year Computer Science major, accompanied him. Nweke gave a wonderful rendition of “I am a Nigerian,” a poem written by Nkiru Asika.
The star artiste for the day was Styl-Plus whose crew entertained the audience with the popular songs for which they are known.
By Omorogbe Omorogiuwa