In a bid to end economic recession in Nigeria, a traditional ruler in Lagos State, Oba Saheed Elegushi, has urged government at all levels to support growth of fashion industry to create employment and increase government revenue.
The monarch, represented by Lagos State acting Commissioner for Transportation, Anofiu Elegushi, during Africa Fashion Week Nigeria (AFWN) 2017 held at the National Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos over the weekend, stated that it would be advantageous to jump start the economy currently in recession, if three tiers of government partner fashion promoters to support growth in the industry.
According to him, when government and the public supported fashion industry, indirectly ensure growth of entertainment industry, employment opportunities would be created and revenue generation would be increased.
He noted that most developed countries earn their major revenues from patronage of their fashion industry by internationally acclaimed superstars, royal families and distinguished personalities.
“I can say that Africa Fashion Week Nigeria 2017 is a great advocate in launching creativity of African and Nigerian fashions,” he added.
Also, Ronke Ademiluyi; founder of AFWN said that the event, fourth in Nigeria, was used to promote and project African culture and heritage to a global audience, by displaying African and Nigerian fabrics in various designs and styles.
Ademiluyi stated that adoption of African fabric and designers globally was a testament to the sector’s untapped potentials as a catalyst for economic development.
In her words, “After three successful years of having the show at Eko Hotels and Suites, we decided to host this year’s show at National Theatre, in Iganmu, Lagos.
“The National Theatre, inaugurated 40 years ago, when Nigeria hosted second Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture (FESTAC 77), remains true icon of our African heritage,” she continued.
Ademiluyi expressed that long-term growth of fashion industry was grounded in developing initiatives that would ensure that it remained at forefront of creativity, centre of fashion, style and innovation.
“This year’s AFWN is unique as we have 56 designers and 40 exhibitors selected from various parts of Nigeria and African continent, displaying their talents and brands in the two-day catwalk show”.
Meanwhile, 2016 Best Model Nigeria winner in Istanbul, Turkey and also one of the models in the catwalk, Joy Ejiro, stated that Nigerian fabrics were getting international acceptance and required support and promotion by government.
It is noted that some fashion designers at the event includes Reverse, (handmade bags, suits), Zainab Bridals, Lamzie from Owerri, Simply Sleek and Women in Nigeria designs, also known as “Oleku’’, Modella, Kola Kuddus, Maufechi, Regalia by FAL, Blingshiki, Zizi Cardow, Marobuk, Tash by Tasha, Linda Ngwi (Cameroun) Sally Bawa and Alex Akande (Cameroon).