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The city of Lagos glowed in the flames of excitement on Saturday, 19th April, 2014, as Lagosians and foreigners took to the streets of Ikoyi, Victoria Island to watch countless beautifully dressed troops of dancers as they parade in their regalia. Apart from religious gatherings, the Lagos carnival is the first and largest gathering in Nigeria where I will see people of different races, irrespective of social class, come together and have fun together in a mutual way without paying a fee and without fear of oppression or insecurity.
The Carnival represents the real spirit of Lagos which is a spirit of prosperity; and the event essentially recreates the age long tradition of Brazilian Lagos as pioneered by Brazilian returnees Emancipados. during the annual carnival, all the six educational districts in Lagos are well represented at the parade, featuring areas like, Ikeja, Ketu, Agege, Ifako- Ijaiye, Ikorodu Ogba, Isolo, Surulere, Odi- Olowo, Mushin, Ilasamaja, Oworonshoki Awoyaya, Addo Langbasa, Epe and Badagry, as well as the traditional Fanti groups of Campos Lafiaji, Epetedo and Oko Faji.
The whole Awolowo Road in Ikoyi area of Lagos was shut down. Falomo bridge thronged with parked vehicles of people who were initial driving past but couldn’t resist the charm of the street party happening on Awolowo Road (just beneath the bridge) and therefore had to pull up to join the fair. The entire Awolowo Road was lined with throngs of by-standers which was composed of Lagosians of various origin, Nigerians and foreigners, Britons, Asians, South Americans, adults, children, rich, poor, area boy, area girl, drink hawkers, barbecue and suya sellers etc. all waiting eagerly with phones and cameras raised high to capture and film the various carnival bands as they dance past. Everyone wanted to capture the memorable moments and share with their Family and Friends. The dancers wiggled and swayed to the music played by their private truck-mounted disk jockeys, amusing and entertaining their spectators who cheered, clapped, booed or frolicked playfully in response to the melodious music.
There was a judge’s stand somewhere along the stretch of the Awolowo road where each band stops to make a major presentation to impress the judges, before marching on. The whole road show, which kicked off from Falomo Round-About at about 10:00am, proceed till late in the afternoon and culminated at Tafawa Balewa Square and Campos Square in Lagos Island where Oritse Femi, a popular guest artiste entertained the massive crowd. However, at this moment, the winner (band) of this year’s carnival has not yet been announced.
See the road show in photos as well as the full video below:
… largest gathering in Nigeria where I will see people of different races, irrespective of social class, come together and have fun together in a mutual way without paying a fee and without fear of oppression or insecurity.
– The whole parade culminated at Tafawa Balewa Square (above) in Lagos Island where Oritse Femi, a popular guest artiste entertained the massive crowd [Photo Credit: @sheedy407]
This article was written by Folarin Kolawole
Founder of Naijatreks, Nigerian-born Folarin Kolawole is a geologist, travel writer and researcher. When not at work, he travels the length and breadth of Nigeria, exploring, taking photos and writing about her numerous hidden tourist potentials. 'Naijatreks' is a product name registered under the Ntreks brand, which is also duly registered by Nigeria's Federal Corporate Affairs Commission. The contents on this blog are re-usable. However, it must be ensured that it is linked back to this blog, and correctly attributed to Naijatreks or the author. Please do not edit, rewrite or commercialize the original works on this blog without direct and written permission from the Founder (Folarin Kolawole). For inquiries and advert placement on the blog, kindly contact us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.