Bassey Otu, the Cross River governor, and Betta Edu, the Nigerian humanitarian minister, led a team of jubilant participants at the ongoing Calabar carnival.


Calabar Carnival is an annual cultural event celebrated in eastern Nigeria.

This year’s edition is tagged ‘Season of Sweetness’. The month-long celebration — filled with exciting events — also had participants from Brazil, Turkey, South Africa, and Egypt.

On Thursday, the parade of the bands took centre stage in the ongoing Calabar carnival.


The parade, which had the various bands in their colourful costumes dance through the 12 kilometres carnival route, also had a large number of residents, tourists and fun seekers cheering them.

Declaring the parade open, Otu said the government was bringing back the carnival in a bigger platform where it could truly be referred to as an international brand.

He added that the essence was to ensure that Cross River was really the choice tourism destination in Nigeria.


There was a heavy presence of security officials in different parts of the city, especially along the carnival route, with vehicular movements effectively diverted.

This is to forestall a reoccurrence of the 2022 incident where some people lost their lives and many were injured by a recklessly driven vehicle which ran into the carnival route.

The various bands were expected to interpret the theme of the carnival. They were expected to perform at different adjudication points where they would be judged by a panel and the winning band would go home with a cash prize.

Some of the bands included the Master Blaster Band and Seagull Band.


Others are Diamond Band, Bayside Band, Passion Four Band, and Calas Vegas Band.

The carnival sees different ethnic groups across the world display their cultural uniqueness.

Otu also joined the concertgoers with his traditional cap while waving at the cheering crowd.

The colourful 31-day annual ceremony also witnessed the display of local instruments and a host of cultural creativity.


From the constant sound of drum beats to different dance steps, each cultural group ensured that they were duly represented at the event.

The ceremony also featured different music concerts headlined by artistes like Reekado Banks, Mayorkun, Patoranking, and Iyanya.

See some of the photos below:


Photo credit: Jstarzphotography

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