The Director, Institute of Cultural Studies, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Prof. Gbenga Fasiku, has urged African leaders to work unanimously to promote peaceful co-existence within the continent.
Fasiku gave the advice during the commemoration of the Black History Month organized by the Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilisation (CBAAC).
He said this was to strengthen African identity and promote the African spirit of excellence, most especially in the area of Arts.
The programme, held virtually and physically, had its theme as “The Contributions of Africans to the Arts”.
He said that in view of the success stories always recorded in African arts, music, literature, fashion and all, Africans must remain united to sustain, maintain and improve on the successes.
“In the face of a seemingly continuous regime of recolonization, Can African arts ever be allowed to perform its functions?
”One of which is to drive genuine African emancipation, redefine African true consciousness, develop and lead Africa into her rightful position as a world power.
“This is a clarion call to African leaders to unite and strengthen the Africa identity, which will hydrate the African spirit of excellence in all facets of life.
“At the Grammy Awards this year, Nigerian singer Tems came fringed in ostrich feathers and at the Cannes Film Festival, a young French-Senegalese director, Ramata-Toulaye Sy was a breakout star.
“African fashion had its own shows in Paris and Milan. In Venice, Africa is the focus of this year’s Architectural Biennale.
“Last year, an architect from Burkina Faso won the prestigious Pritzker Prize. In 2021, Tanzania-born Abdulrazak Gurnah won the Nobel Prize in Literature.”
He said many African artists have continued to make a serious impact.
”We must work on ensuring peaceful co-existence in order to create more success stories,” he said.