Thousands of people had the opportunity to celebrate & participate!
London 23rd July 2018
The British Eritrean Festival UK 2018, which took place at Harrow Leisure Centre concluded its 17th Annual British Eritrean Festival UK on Sunday 22nd July 2018.
This year the Eritrean Festival UK 2018 unlike its previous 16 years of festivities had more to offer and did much with extreme zeal. This year's festival was a double celebration with Peace Agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia, showcased Eritrea's Socio - Economic, Cultural & Traditional values.
The British Eritrean Festival UK core values being to promote Harmony, Consolidation of Eritrean Unity, Strengthening Eritrea's Cultural & Identity, promoting a higher mobilisation and organization development of Eritrea, African capacity & ingenuity in addition to recreational activities.
The Festival opening ceremony was presided by a distinguished Guest of Honour H.E Estifanos Habtemariam Ambassador of the State of Eritrea to UK & Ireland, Mr. Nitin Parekh, deputy major of Harrow, representative of various organisation, community elders & religious leaders.
The colourful Festival in London at Harrow Leisure Centre, a magnificent arena, that would house the bus-loads that came from Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, Liverpool, Sheffield, Nottingham, Coventry and Newcastle.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, head of the festival organising committee Mr. Muluberhan Berhe and the chairman of the British Eritrean Community Organisation Network BECON, Mr. Ahmed Mohammed Mahmoud stressed the paramount importance of holding festivals in bringing Eritrean nationals together. It also has a vital role to play in reinforcing identity and bequeathing cherished societal values to future generations, he added.
Eritrean Ambassador of the State of Eritrea to UK H.E. Estifanos Habtemariam also gave a welcoming speech, thanking the participants in taking part on the celebration of the 16th Eritrean Festival UK, there by updating the participants on current state of affairs. The guest speakers included Mr Nitin Parekh, deputy major of Harrow and Dr. Tadesse Birru representative of Ginbot 7. Dr. Tadesse Birru said on his speech;- there is only one independent government in the Horn of Africa that has the vision and leadership quality to help bring such an idea.
Amongst the highs of the opening ceremony were the cultural performances by the traditional artists of Eritrea, North London, East London, Sheffield which captivated the audience from each corner of the festival ground. Each and every face was filled with pride whilst the cultural group displayed a performance that was original overpowering the host culture. An exhibition that depicts the Eritrean culture and current developments in Eritrea was also opened for the public. The exhibition also included paintings, photos and craft works from the diverse Eritrean culture and rich history, which depicted the exceptional history of the Liberation struggle in Eritrea.
In a seminar he conducted with the participants of the festival H.E. Estifanos Habtemariam, Ambassador of the State of Eritrea to UK & Ireland, explained that the Eritrean government is making enormous investment to ensuring social justice and sustainable economic development. He further pointed out that the country is in a stage where its bright future is becoming progressively evident thanks to the spirit of steadfastness among citizens inside the country and abroad.
The Festival was organised across seven programs, which were children's activities, family & community activities, arts & culture program, youth forums & ideas, sports competition. Thus, the main thrust of the program was focus on the activities of children, youth, families and communities in general. The above efforts have been very instrumental in consolidating national unity, national mobilisation and organisation, cultural transformation and the transfer of the values as cultural heritage to the next generation has thus been crucial in the independence of the nation, all this happening on the back drop of lots of other recreational activities that were happening such as the Football and Bike racing games that took place, in which the Football Team from Newcastle clinch the Cup to Victory.
Another unforgettable moment of the event was the music performance that sent the crowd wild which witnessed the high level of patriotism with a wave of the colourful Eritrean flag dominating the sight of every participant. The closing ceremony was a colourful combination which created a nice view which prompted any viewer to stay tuned, that left the crowd wowed and asking for more.