By Chux Odoh
President of France, Emmanuel Macron, on Tuesday night, July 3rd made a historic visit to the New Afrika Shrine in Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos, home of late Afrobeat legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti.
While attending an event tagged ‘Celebration of African Culture’, to inaugurate the African Cultural Season 2020, Marcron described the shrine as an iconic centre for the propagation of African culture, strength and music and recalled how he “discovered” Nigeria, Lagos and the shrine.
He said he was excited to be back to the Afrika Shrine, saying that he still holds fond memories of the place since his first visited back in 2002 while he worked at the French embassy in Nigeria.
“I discovered Nigeria and a lot of my friends are here. I discovered Nigeria and I discovered Lagos and I discovered the shrine.”
“This place is an iconic place and it is a place where the best of music is given. I have to say my main memories about this place are friends, proud people, proud of their culture, proud of their art and music. I have a very different view of Africa than a lot of other people in Europe.”
Macron also used the opportunity to disclose plans to host the African Cultural Season 2020 in France, saying it would be about promoting African culture in Europe, emphasising that the event would be for Africa and by African artistes.
“It will include people with fashion, African movies, new generation of artistes will be coming from Africa and it will be organized by them to show Europe and France the real culture of Africa,” he said.
Watch the French President speak about the New Afrikan Shrine
The Shrine is an iconic cultural hub. And I say with a lot of humility that I recognize the importance of African culture. pic.twitter.com/u77v7tiEKx
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) July 3, 2018