By John Okeke
The People’s Republic of China mark its new year celebration on Saturday 25th January, 2020 even as it has announced that food items would be donated to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps as part of events to mark the fourth edition of the Chinese New Year Temple Fair in Abuja.
The Director, China Cultural Centre, Mr Li Xuda, disclosed this while addressing newsmen on the outline of events for the forth coming Chinese new year temple fair celebration slated for Jan. 25.
He explained that the Chinese New Year with a history that dates back to 2000bc was the Chinese festival that celebrated the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese Lunar calender.
He said that 2020 was the year of rat, which was the first in the 12 year cycle of Chinese Zodiac, symbolising a new beginning.
According to him, it is the year of People’s Republic of China’s 8th decade, the year China lifts all rural residents living below the current poverty line and eliminate poverty in China.
“Just like the Christmas to Christian world and Eid-el-Fitr to the Islamic world, the Chinese new year or Lunar new year is the most celebrated traditional festival in China and Asian countries and among the Chinese communities world wide.
“The festival is usually referred to as the Spring Festival in China. Among the many customs, rituals and practices associated with this festival, the temple fair a traditional cultural gathering of folks is outstanding,” he said.
Xuda said that as part of 2020 temple fair, there would be special donations session in which the Chamber of Commerce would utilise the temple fair as a platform to reach out to people in IDP camps.
“The chamber of commerce will utilise the temple fair as an important platform of influence and attention calling for donation among Chinese companies for IDP camps themed ‘Cares in the festive season.
“There are plans to donate rice, noodles and oil to the helpless people in IDP camps with selfless assistance and devotion,” he further said.
He explained that the fair was celebrated in many countries in the world, recalling that in 2019 more than 1,500 events were held in over 133 countries.
Xuda said that there would be indoor and outdoor activities such as tea ceremony, craft demonstration, under tree party and different Chinese food, among others.
He said that the fair would be organised by the China cultural centre in collaboration with the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce in Nigeria.
Mr Patrick Otoro, Creative Director, POP Theatre, said that China was a very cultural rich country.
He said the collaboration between the two countries would help to harness the diversity in both countries for proper bilateral relationship when it came to cultural affairs.
“We hope that this relationship will create more jobs especially in the performing art sector for Nigerian youths and we are hoping to build a strong tie with China.
“It will also further help us to strengthen the economic ties between the two countries,” he added.