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At London’s Africa Centre Celebration: Sierra Leone Showcases Cultural Riches and Diversity

HomeAYV NewsAt London's Africa Centre Celebration: Sierra Leone Showcases Cultural Riches and Diversity

At London’s Africa Centre Celebration: Sierra Leone Showcases Cultural Riches and Diversity

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AYV News, July 8, 2024.

In a dazzling display of sounds and visuals, the Sierra Leone Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs showcased the beauty and vibrancy of Sierra Leone and its amazing people, to the world, beamed from inside London’s Africa Centre.

Mrs. Nabeela Farida Tunis, the inspirational head of the Ministry, described the event as “just a taste” of what Sierra Leone has to offer, teasing a more immersive experience for those who visit the country.

Yesterday’s “taster” event at the Africa Centre in London was a teaser, highlighting the splendour of Sierra Leone in its finest form. Guests were treated to an engaging journey through an exciting route of history, as vivid visuals and an evocative narration revealed the core ingredients of Sierra Leonean culture: its people, songs, cuisine, dress styles, diverse tribes, and rich flora and fauna. These elements were brought to life through creative cultural displays, traditional cuisine, locally produced clothing, and heartfelt speeches.

Mr. Kwame Yankson, the affable Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism, introduced Mrs. Nabeela Tunis. He praised her inspiring qualities and tremendous drive, describing her as the “Tourism Game Changer” who has commendably revived Sierra Leone’s tourism sector.

Minister Nabeela Tunis began her speech by acknowledging the visionary leadership of His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio, whose insightful initiatives have catalyzed meaningful changes across all sectors of Sierra Leone’s national life. She warmly welcomed attendees, extolled the beauty of Sierra Leone, and encouraged everyone to make the Sierra Leone Story a part of their own. She described the country as “a beautiful blend of every ingredient needed to experience paradise”.

From its high-rise mountains descending into the warm tropical waters of Africa’s largest natural harbour, to its stunning white sandy beaches and pristine rivers, Sierra Leone, she said, is a nation steeped in history, teeming with nature, and awash with goodwill.

Minister Tunis also highlighted Sierra Leone’s participation in the three-day African Travel and Tourism Association (ATTA) Experience Africa event, this week, in Bishopsgate. There again the country was prominently featured, appearing on that prestigious tourism market place for the first time.

She then talked about the unique blend of tourism experiences Sierra Leone has on offer: from colourful photographic exhibitions and irresistible music; to distinctive cloth weaving, and innovative wood carving; from exotic bird watching, to whale spotting, agrotourism, and sea surfing.

The Ministry, she explained, is dedicated to ensuring that Sierra Leone’s “Explore Freedom” brand “provides a unique, unforgettable, and authentic experience tailored to individual tastes”.

The theme of the Thursday event, streamed live on TV platforms including the AYV network, placed a lot of emphasis on public participation and people ownership. “The people”, Mrs. Tunis underlined, “are at the heart of our national tourism drive, as a fundamental pillar of Sierra Leone’s transformation and the country’s economic prosperity”. Hence the catchy mantra “Tourism business, Nar all man business” was a constant refrain loudly re-echoing around the building and throughout the event.

Minister Tunis went on to state that Sierra Leoneans are deservingly celebrated for their religious tolerance and intellectual prowess. She also described the people as “beautiful and brainy”, embodying the spirit of a country on the rise.

Minister Tunis concluded by inviting investors and tourists to explore the vast potentials of Sierra Leone’s vibrant culture and tourism sector, promising many attractive and potentially exciting possibilities.

“Tourism Business, Nar All Man Business”, continued to be chanted long after Mrs. Nabeelai Tunis had descended from the stage.

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