Exciting performances mark NAFAC in Bolgatanga
Hundreds of patrons were treated to exciting cultural performances by various dance troupes at the Upper East Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFAC) held at the Jubilee Park in Bolgatanga, the regional capital.
Many patrons who could not hide their joy over the performances got out of their seats to clap and cheer the performers on, while others joined them to dance away their excitement.
The cultural troupes were drawn from the various municipalities and districts in the region.
The troupes were the Sakoti Cultural Troupe, the Golombo Cultural Group, the Bongo-Bogrigo Solema Group, the Nongtaaba Women’s Group, the Kalejo Nabia Show Boys, the Agoajaabiik Cultural Troupe, the Nongre Deaya Group, among others.
Also present at the festival last Thursday were traditional rulers, including the Paramount Chief of the Bongo Traditional Area, Naba Baba Salifu Alemyaarum; the Paramount Chief of the Paga Traditional Area, Paga-Pio, Pe Charles Awiah Awampaga II, and the Paramount Chief of the Nangodi Traditional Area, Naba Asaga Yelzoya II.
The festival, which was organised by the Upper East Regional Office of the Centre for National Culture (CNC) and the Regional Coordinating Council, was on the theme: “Reviving patriotism, peace and unity through cultural diversity for sustainable development”.
Although the performances by all the troupes were exciting, the Nongre Deaya Group stood out, as their dance attracted many people to the venue, including passers-by.
The members of the group, dressed in animal skin and carrying bows and arrows, with ‘horn hats’ to match, performed a war dance that brought patrons, including the dignitaries, to their feet.
The Upper West Regional Minister, Dr Hafiz Bin Salih, who stood in for his Upper West Regional counterpart, Stephen Yakubu, who was on an official duty outside the area, underscored the need for people to value their culture and traditions and work towards preserving them for the benefit of future generations.
“It is surprising that many people have abandoned the speaking of their respective local languages at home, particularly those privileged to be educated. It is very worrying, because such an attitude is a great disservice to themselves and their culture and traditions,” he added.
Dr Salih called for the institutionalisation of the festival and said it could also be replicated in other parts of the region, saying: “We need to ensure that at every state function cultural groups perform their dances as a way of marketing them to the rest of the world.”
The acting Upper East Regional Director of the CNC, Pamphilio Kuubesingn, said: “The organisation of cultural festivals must be a collective responsibility if we truly want to keep our identity and bequeath our cultural identity to succeeding generations.”
For his part, Naba Alemyaarum entreated chiefs and queen mothers to take a lead role in upholding and preserving the culture and traditions of the people.