#National News

Kansala Trust Organisation pushes for inscription of Futampaf on UNESCO calendar of events

Feb 17, 2022, 1:38 PM | Article By: Adama Tine

In efforts to preserve the Jola traditional festival which has survived for over 300 years, Kansala Trust Organisation in collaboration with the National Centre for Arts and Culture have disclosed plans to push for the addition Futampaf on UNESCO World Heritage List of events.

At a recent presser held in Bwiam, Foni Kansala District West Coast Region, the organisation revealed plans of holding Futampaf International Cultural Festival annually in the last week of month of March.

Ousman Jarju, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the organisation said this year will be the maiden edition of Futampaf International Cultural Festival, which is scheduled for the 25th to 27th March, 2022 in Bwiam.

The event, he added, is open to everyone who wants to participate as all members of ethnic groups in The Gambia and Senegal are invited to the three-day activity.

He pointed out that the event is to safeguard the 12 standards of the Jola Futampaf cultural activity of which all Jola descendants in the Senegambia region wish to represent as a cultural heritage.

The festival, he added is among other things designed to provide a forum for young Jolas and other multi-ethnic communities to experience the Futampaf rite of passage, and thus create positive awareness of diversity of arts and culture; offer a possibility for intercultural exchange between different ethnic groups in the Gambia and beyond as part of fostering local and intercultural dialogue.

He also maintained that the festival would also promote peace and build reconciliation efforts through intercultural exchange and cultural diversity as an integral part of the Jola identity.

He further explained that other preparations are already in place for the celebration of the Futampaf International Cultural Festival include training of the Futampaf organising committee – the executive committee of Kansala Trust Organisation, VDC of Bwiam and representative from the various villages on cultural festival management.

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