The Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilisation (CBAAC) says its proposed tour of the Caribbean nations and festivals is to reconnect Africans in the Diaspora with their cultural heritage in Africa.
Chief Ferdinand Anikwe, the Director-General of CBAAC, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Abuja.
He said that the mandate of the centre was to sensitise and connect Africans in the Diaspora, particularly those in South America and in the Caribbean, to their original African culture.
“The intention is to have an organic link between what they are doing there and what it used to be here.
“Most of them went out there on circumstances known to us, either by conscription or during the slave trade.
“Most of the carnivals in South America are a summary of what they are able to remember when they were here in Africa because our festivals and feast are countless.
“For some people who had been taken away completely from their original roots and quarantined in different environments for centuries; trying to recapture what it was, they will do it in various forms.
“That is why during their carnivals, you see them rubbing some substances on their faces inside articulated vehicles and go naked; all in an attempt to recapture what and how it used to be when they were in Africa,’’ he said.
The CBAAC boss said that the centre was hopeful that from its 2018 budget it would have the opportunity “of touring South America and bringing these people home.’’
Anekwe said that Africans had over the years grown with their cultures, feasts, festivals and all other forms of traditional ceremonies.
The world cannot develop without including the culture and history of everyone.
“If you observe the Asian Tigers, you will discover that they added other things to the developmental paradigm of Western Europe and North America, which is simply their culture.
“They acquired the external influence called civilising mission and were able to domesticate those ideas and theories and integrate them properly into their culture and custom,’’ Anikwe said.
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