President Buhari Attends Argungu International Fishing Festival (Photos)

There is a saying that Africa is the festival continent. Throughout the year in towns and villages across the continent, colorful and vibrant religious, harvest, fertility, and cultural festivals are held. Bare-hand fishing competition among thousands of fishermen, equipped with a hand net and large gourd, is the main event of the cultural extravaganza at Argungu in Kebbi State in northwestern Nigeria. The competitors splash into the stream, scouring the water for huge freshwater fish. The Argungu fishing festival (Fashin Ruwa) is a celebration of life. It is a tool of conserving natural resources, maintaining and promoting traditional life. It is the precursor of today’s fishery management measure. The local people believe they have been fishermen for all time. The effective conservation of natural resources is closely linked to the use of the local knowledge and hence the life of the community. It is also part of an ancient fertility ritual which, from the point of view of the local Kebbawa people, is the most important aspect of the occasion. The festival takes place usually in February after all agricultural work is finished. It marks the end of the growing season, and it opens the fishing season with a bang.

The Argungu Agricultural & Fishing Festival was suspended for 11 years as a result of insecurity. This year, by the grace of God, this festival is back. I joined the people of Kebbi to celebrate this restoration, as well as the progress being made in restoring peace and security. Festivals such as these, celebrated across the country, bring Nigerians closer together & help improve our collective appreciation of our diversity, while also projecting our rich history & cultures to the world. We must therefore continue to support and promote these festivals. At the Fair I saw on display many products; all proof of the progress we have made as a nation in feeding ourselves. I am pleased that our farming, fishing and pastoral communities have truly embraced our administration’s programmes, and helped prove that we can grow what we eat. Kebbi State has played a pivotal role in our agricultural revolution. Our food security program started there in 2015. Governor Bagudu is also a key member of the National Food Security Council, which I chair. I thank the people of Kebbi for their support to the Governor. For all our farmers, fishing and livestock communities, and agro entrepreneurs, you have truly made me proud. We shall continue to support you with access to credit, adequate inputs, and access to markets and policies that will promote and support your competitiveness”- President Buhari

Pix credit: Twitter.com/ @MohaSheikh__

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