Project ONE Nigerian held a historical tribute to commemorate the life and work of Taiwo Akinkunmi, the esteemed designer of Nigeria’s flag In Abuja.
The event held at the Unity fountain abuja with the campaign “IAMANIGERIAN” brought together prominent figures, government officials, artists, and Nigerians from all walks of life to honor Akinkunmi’s contributions to the nation’s cultural heritage.
The historical tribute according to Bisayo Busari-Akinnadeju, the founder of Project ONE Nigeria served as an opportunity to reflect on the significance of Akinkunmi’s flag design and its enduring impact on Nigeria’s national identity.
Her statement reads “In 1959, the young Akinkunmi submitted his design for the national flag of Nigeria, which was eventually chosen out of 2,000 entries. His design was a simple yet powerful representation of Nigeria’s aspirations and values. The green vertical stripes symbolize Nigeria’s agricultural wealth, while the white stripe represents peace. The central green-white-green vertical stripes represent Nigeria’s progressive nature”.
Guest speakers led by the Director General of National Orientation Agency, Dr Garba Abari passionately recounted anecdotes about the flag and its symbolism, emphasizing its role in fostering unity and pride among Nigerians.
Other speakers include former member of the House of Representatives and a former Chief of Staff to the deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Bimbo Daramola, Coordinator of Progressive Change Agents Initiative APC-PCAi Seun Bosede Osamaye, shed light on the global impact of Akinkunmi’s flag design. They shared stories of how other nations, especially within Africa, drew inspiration from Nigeria’s flag when designing their own national emblems. The simplicity and symbolism of the design resonated with the aspirations of many African countries striving for freedom and nationhood.
The high point of the event was a speech performance rendered by Titi Anifowose which explored the significance of the flag design and the impact it has had on shaping Nigeria’s national identity.
The event featured exhibitions showcasing the evolution of the flag and its incorporation in various aspects of Nigerian society over the years. Historical artifacts, photographs, and personal testimonies provided a rich tapestry of Akinkunmi’s journey and the inspiration behind his iconic design.
Art installations and performances showcased the creativity and influence of Akinkunmi’s design in contemporary Nigerian art and culture.
The historical tribute also included an interactive session where attendees had the opportunity to share their personal stories and experiences related to the flag. These intimate moments created a sense of community and reinforced the importance of embracing and celebrating Nigeria’s diverse cultural heritage.
Ultimately, the historical tribute was an expression of gratitude and respect for Taiwo Akinkunmi’s enduring legacy. It served as a reminder of the power of an individual’s artistic vision to shape a nation’s identity and inspire generations to come.