From left: Director General National Commission for Museums and Monuments Prof. Isa Tijani, Vice Chancellor Borno State University Professor Sandabe, Vice Chancellor University of Maiduguri Professor Aliyu Shugaba and representative of Borno state Governor Alhaji Babakura Abba Jatau at the International Conference on Cultural Sustainability held at University of Maiduguri.
By Dauda Iliya
Experts in security and cultural sector have converged on Maiduguri, the Borno state capital for a three international conference on promoting cultural sustainability.
The conference organised by Centre for the study of cultural sustainability University of Maiduguri, have participants drawn from different institutions across the country and other parts of the world.
The insecurity in the Northeast region and the Lake Chad area has not only impacted on the socio-economic and political institutions but also cultural and linguistic identity.
The crisis has led to mass displacement of people and migration across boundaries thereby eroding peoples cherished cultural values.
This informed the international conference, which is second in the series, convened by the Centre for the Promotion of Cultural Sustainability University of Maiduguri on how best to find innovative ways of sustaining the cultural heritage for peace and development.
In their lead presentations, former Vice Chancellor Federal University Gashua, Yobe state Professor Andrew Haruna and Dean Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Nigerian Defence Academy Kaduna, Professor Usman Tar observed that climate change, urbanisation, globalization and population growth are the major drivers of conflict in North-east and the Lake Chad Basin.
They called on government at different levels to accord priority to food security, participatory governance and sustainable development to address the challenges.
Borno state Governor Babagana Zulum represented by the Commissioner for Home Affairs, Information and Culture Alhaji Babakura Jatau promised to collaborate with the center to preserve the rich cultural heritage of the state for the benefit of humanity.
“There is high penetration of the International and intercultural cross fertilisation due to the emergence of the new media. This will have a lot of influence on our children and the only thing we can do to preserve ours and ensure that ours is not inferior to any culture, we need to have a Center like this to re-energize the cultural landscape of this nation ” Zulum stressed.
Vice Chancellor University of Maiduguri Professor Aliyu Shugaba assured that the institution will continue to promote cultural studies through research and innovation.
Director of the Centre Professor Saliba James remarked that the lingering insecurity in the entire West Africa sub region require innovative research to sustain the culture.
About eighty academic papers will be presented on various aspects of culture in West Africa during the conference.
Correspondent Dauda Iliya reports that conference has as its theme: conflicts, indigenous institutions and cultural sustainability.