By G9ija

THEY are back at it. The joy of the Marama people knew no bounds as they returned to celebrating the Marama Cultural Day, something they had long put on hold for many years since the notorious Boko Haram terrorists began to destroy communities and kill their inhabitants all in a bid to foist their malevolent agenda and raise their flag of evil above the wellbeing and happiness of the communities.

But with the gradual return of peace and stability to the communities in Borno State and the deliberate programme of return of internally-displaced persons to their villages, the people of Marama summoned courage and enthusiastically rolled out the drums in celebration of their rich cultural heritage on the New Year day, drawing applause from far and near.

It was a day to behold as men, women and children came in their best cultural attires and dutifully put on display their traditional dancing styles, tools and implements for agriculture as well as musical instruments accompanied with all the fanfare they could muster.

The event was not short of top personalities to watch, dance and sing along with the elated natives.

An elated Governor Babagana Zulum, who could not personally attend the cultural festival, dispatched his deputy, Umar Kadafur, to the 2022   Bura Cultural Day organised by Marama Community Development Association, MCDA, at the Government Secondary School Marama Play Ground in Hawul Local Government Area.

The governor pleaded with traditional rulers to continue to protect cultural artefacts and the rich heritage of the people for the future growth and development of the state and its people.

Prof Zulum assured that the state government was serious and committed to revamping the culture and tradition of the diverse ethnic groups in the state. 

The governor, however, pleaded with the natives to spare no effort in sending their wards to school as education remains the bedrock of any meaningful development in any society and also assured the people in the area of more projects before the end of his administration. 

The Caretaker Chairman of MCDA, Mr Samuel Bwala, said the festival had over the years provided a forum for interaction, celebration and showcasing of the rich cultural heritage of Bura people to the world. 

The Chairman appealed to the state government to consider rehabilitation of the deplorable 20-kilometre Yimirshika -Marama -Kidang Road, the revitalisation of the School of Agriculture, the fencing of    the Marama Central Primary School and the General Hospital as well as the replacement of transformers in the community. 

The Emir of Biu, His Royal Highness Mai Mustapha Umar Mustapha, commended the organisers of the festival and all the sons and daughters of Biu Emirate for their cooperation and understanding in maintaining and reviving   their culture and traditions and prayed for God to continue to unite them for the progress and development of the area.

The Borno State Head of service Barr. Simon Malgwi, in a paper presentation warned that that all hands must be on deck to salvage the Bura culture, which he noted was fast disappearing and heading towards extinction as noticeable in the areas of its language, traditional music and food.

The community raised at least N12 million at a fund and calendar launch at the same event with the state government doling out N5 million and another N5 million donated by the Deputy Governor, Umar Kadafur, in support of the two programmes.