Plateau State Governor Simon Bako Lalong, his Nasarawa State counterpart Abdullahi Sule, Deputy Speaker House of Representatives Ahmed Idris Wase among other dignitaries bagged traditional titles at the 2021 Bit-Gamai Cultural Festival in Shendam Local Government Council of the state.
The event which is the annual socio-cultural festival of the Gamai Nation attracted dignitaries from Plateau State and various parts of the country.
Governor Lalong disclosed that this year’s Bit Gamai is coming at a very auspicious time in the history of the nation when there is a greater need for unity, peace and understanding among the various ethnic, religious and social affiliations within Plateau State and Nigeria at large.
He said having worked assiduously over the last six years to restore peace to Plateau State, it was a delight to note that the various cultural festivals which were hitherto affected by insecurity have largely returned, as the various ethnic nationalities have continued to showcase their cultures and traditions in festivals such as the Bit Gamai.
According to him “Looking at the level of violence perpetrated by criminals such as kidnappers, bandits, terrorists and others across our nation, we must carry out thorough introspection as to what is responsible for the rise of such negative behaviours that are obviously alien to our cultures and traditions. There is obviously a missing link somewhere that we have to address in eliminating threats to our unity and progress”.
Governor Lalong condemned the unfortunate desecration of the traditional institution by the kidnap of the Sum Pyem, His Royal Highness Charles Mato Dakat who regained freedom Friday morning saying the security agencies are after the kidnappers.
He also sent condolences to the Mwaghavul Nation on the passing of the First Class Traditional Ruler, the Mishkaham Mwaghavul, Da Nelson Bakfur who died within the week.
Chairman of the occassion, Nasarawa State Governor Engr. Abdullahi Sule represented by Deputy Governor Dr. Emmanuel Akabe described culture as a tool for unity and harmony which should be exploited to bring people together such as is being done by the Lalong Rescue Administration which has consistently encouraged the 53 ethnic groups to live in peace with one another.
Deputy Speaker House of Representatives Rt.Hon. Idris Wase said the hosting of the Gamai Festival among others is yet another proof of the dividends of peace that has been championed by Governor Simon Lalong which enabled many socio-cultural organisations to hold their festivals unlike in the past.
Chairman of the Gamai Unity and Development Organization (GUDO), Theodore Maiyaki welcomed guests to the festival which he said has continued to unite the people of Gamai land as well as their friends and well wishes across the country.
He disclosed that the Launching of the 250million Appeal Fund is targeted towards the construction of the Centre that will be a source of knowledge, entertainment and entrepreneurship towards the emancipation of the younger generation as well as cultural education.
Chief Launcher Alhaji Nasiru Danu, the Dan Amanar Dutse said he was honoured to participate in the Launching of the Fund which he believes will serve not only the interest of the Gamai people, but of the State and Nigeria at large.
The Gbong Gwom Jos Jacob Gyang Buba said the Plateau Council of Traditional Rulers has continued to work with the Government in sustaining peace and will continue to do so in weeding out criminals who are desperate in destabilising the State and nation.
High point of the event was the honouring of various guests with traditional titles as announced by the Long Gamai, HRH Miskoom Martin Shaldas III who said the awardees were selected for thier contributions to the development of Gamai nation.
They include Governor Simon Bako Lalong, Nasarawa State Governor Abdullahi Sule, Deputy Speaker Idris Wase, Senator Nora Dadu’ut, Tetfund Executive Secretary Prof. Elias Bogoro, among others.