Lagos State Government at the weekend listed the gains of its countdown programme initiated in December 2012, noting that about N1 billion was pumped into the state economy as a result of the programme.
Consequently, the state government unveiled the 2013 edition of the Lagos Countdown, which it said, would kick off on December 7 at the Bar Beach, Victoria Island and come to an end on January 1, 2014.
The Managing Director of Lagos State Signage and Advertisement Agency (LASAA), Mr. George Noah, disclosed this in a statement, stressing that the countdown programme “is about instituting an enduring crossover tradition, commerce, employment generation, leisure, entertainment and tourism.”
He explained that the Lagos countdown “is a world-class celebration of the end of one year and the beginning of another in the state. It was conceived by Governor Babatunde Fashola, in order to put Lagos on the global map in the league of such cities as New York, Dubai, London, Sydney, and other major destinations that commemorate the cross over into the new year.”
The managing director acknowledged that the 2012 edition attracted about N1 billion to the state, noting that the fund “was pumped into the state economy as a result of the countdown. About 1,000 people were employed including caterers, retailers, entertainers and security personnel.”
He said the Bar Beach attracted over 200,000 people in ten days and that what the LASAA “is doing on behalf of the state government is leveraging the proposition of Lagos as a premium destination for business and leisure.”
He assured that the 2013 edition “promises to be more exciting, with the parade of over top 40 Nigerian artists including TuFace Idibia, Davido, Omawunmi, Bracket, J Martins, Morell, Duncan Mighty, Timaya, Wizkid, Banky W, Tiwa Savage, Wande Coal, D’Prince, MI, Ice Prince, Burna Boy and Iyanya.
"During the countdown programme, the Bar Beach usually becomes a beehive of major commercial and leisure activities thronged by thousands of domestic and foreign visitors who are entertained every evening by different artists at the instance of the title sponsor, Nigerian Breweries Plc.
“The event is arguably the biggest New Year's Eve celebration in Africa. The programme of the Lagos Countdown officially begins when Governor Fashola officially ‘switches on’ the Lagos Festival of Lights, heralding the holiday season which includes musical performances, games and family funfair. The event comes to a climax with a thrilling display of spectacular fireworks and laser beam.”