The East African Community (EAC) is putting on their first-ever Arts and Culture Festival this fall.
Rwanda was chosen by the EAC evaluation committee after submitting a proposal. Rwanda won against many other nations who also put up strong bids to host the event.
The decision to have an biennial festival was made last September by the EAC 23rd Council of Ministers in Arusha, Tanzania.
The EAC Deputy Secretary General in charge of Productive and Social Sectors Hon. Jesca Eriyo said,“The theme of this year’s festival will be ‘Deepening Integration through Culture and Creative Industries’, with the main objective of bringing artistes and East Africans together to dialogue, learn, exchange, network, and celebrate the region’s rich and diverse cultural heritage.”
The biennial festival will be held by EAC Partner States on a rotation, starting with Rwanda. The festivals are a way to build the east African community by creating a space where their different cultures are celebrated. This will promote cultural tourism and conservation, as it is important to showcase and continue certain cultural traditions. They will also create a short-term surge in employment opportunities for the people in the nations that host the festival.
Fashion shows, art exhibitions, workshops and symposiums are only a few events that are planned in order to support cultural diversity and growth. Throughout the festival there are over five venues that will hold these events and more.
This inaugural festival is intended to attract a minimum of 3,000 people who will spend on average about seventy US dollars a day, bringing total projected revenue to about 2.1 million US dollars.
This year’s festival is set to start on the October 27th and last until November 4th, for a total of nine days.