The iconic National Arts Theatre, Lagos Nigeria came alive, weekend night, as it glowed in the distinct United Nations-blue lights as part of a global campaign to ‘Turn the world UN-blue’ in commemoration of the 2015 UN Day and the 70th anniversary of the United Nations.
The lighting of the National Theatre Lagos, organised by the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Lagos and Phillips Nigeria, was greeted with excitement by a few fun-seekers at the premises as they took photographs of the lit-up structure.
Over 300 iconic structures and monuments in over 75 countries were litblue – the official colour of the United Nations. The structures included the world famous landmarks from Australia’s Sydney Opera House to the Great Pyramids of Giza in Egypt, from the statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro to the Empire State Building in New York.
Expressing his delight as the National Arts Theatre Lagos turned blue, the Director of UNIC Lagos, Mr Ronald Kayanja, representing the Resident Coordinator a.i. of the UN System in Nigeria, Ms Jean Gough, said he was so glad that Nigeria, an important member State of the United Nationsjoined this global celebration of UN@70. ”The choice of the National Theatre, he noted, was apt and strategic as it remained the biggest cultural iconic structure in the country.
“I am grateful our Member States are showing such enthusiasm in marking 70 years of UN support for peace, development and human rights,” said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. “By turning the world UN Blue for a day, we can light the way to a better tomorrow.”
The global celebration kicked off in New Zealand and Australia with the lighting of the Sydney Opera House at dusk, and from there a wave of UN Blue move across countries and continents as monuments around the world take part in the international event. The UN Headquarters in New York would light up for two nights, beginning 23 October when the annual UN Day concert held, and concluding on today, 24 October, the UN Day.
Quoting the Under-Secretary General for Public Information Cristina Gallach, the Director of the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Lagos, Mr Ronald Kayanja said, ‘This is an initiative led by the UN Department of Public Information and has had tremendous support from governments, cities, mayors, and locally in any countries to ensure this collaborative public awareness of the UN Day.’
“I call upon the civil society, media, private sector and Government agencies to continue their support to the values and goals of the United Nations aimed at building a strong Nigeria,” he added.