New festival aims to promote and preserve Mandinka culture and tradition

Written by Omar Wally

New festival

Mandîng N’kôlu, a non-partisan organisation established to preserve and promote the culture of the Mandinka people will be organising a week-long Manding Cultural Festival in The Gambia beginning December 25, 2020.

The maiden event, which will be the first of its kind, is anticipated to attract over 100,000 people from the sub-region and across the globe. Participants are expected to come from countries in the subregion such as Senegal, Mali, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Cote d'Ivoire as well as other parts of the globe as far as the USA, France, Cuba, and Mexico.
In an increasingly globalized world, not only are our political and economic structures defined by external forces - usually, the force of more prosperous nations, our cultures, values, and ways of life are at risk of being replaced by alien cultures and value systems.

Our identities as peoples of the world are shaped by our varied cultures and belief systems. Losing one’s culture is the surest way to lose one’s identity and our progress and advancement as a society will depend solely on our ability to define who we are as a people and what we want in life.

International Mandîng Festival and many of its kind will play an important role to add structure to our social lives and connect us with our roots.
As it has been stated many times; “if you don’t know where you’re coming from you will not know where you are headed. In that spirit of self-realisation, we have taken the bold step of revisiting our rich history as a people with hopes of unearthing and reviving as many aspects of our rich culture as possible and to celebrate ourselves as proud Africans with an enviable heritage.

This is aimed at being an annual event that will seek to bring together all peoples of Manding heritage and all who claim lineage to the great people of Manding.

The series of events will touch on all aspects of Manding culture as much as possible up to the establishment of one of the greatest empires of pre-colonial Africa and beyond. We will be joined by our cousins of shared heritage on one platform all showcasing our rich and diverse cultures as shaped by migration patterns. Great artists from the sub-region and international artists who have successfully carried the rich Manding culture around the world and represented her people with distinction are expected to be in attendance.

As we draw closer to the date, the program of events, venues and associated details will be relayed to the public. It will be a cultural show like no other and we will showcase our rich customs, music, traditions, and culture. All are invited to patronize this celebration of culture and pride. It is long overdue that Africans take pride in who they are as people and reclaim the narrative of their contributions to the world. Join us for this history-making event!

For more information and how one can contribute towards the event, please contact any one of the following organizers and founding members on social media: Alasan Gent Ceesay, Omar Jabang, Bintou Janneh, Omar Wally, Fanta Jamba Ceesay, Nfally Fadera, Alieu SK Manjang, Fatima Darboe, Ansu Singhateh, Natta Mass, Yahya Menteng.