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July 23 2015
It was pomp and colour as the Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Culture and The Arts Dr. Hassan Wario officially launched East Africa’s premuier Arts and Cultural fiesta, the Jumuiya ya Afrika Mashariki Utamaduni Festival (JAMAFEST) at a Nairobi Hotel.
Presence of cultural beauty queens from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi in the midst of fireworks, song, dance and ululations during the launch sent a strong signal that the main event which takes off on 2nd of August would be more than an ordinary affair.
The festival brings together East African cultural practitioners and administrators to celebrate the rich and diverse cultural heritage as well as contemporary practice of East Africa.
Addressing invited guests, media fraternity and stakeholders in the Arts and Culture industry, the Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Culture and The Arts Dr. Hassan Wario said the Kenya Government is committed to hosting the event. 
He disclosed that Jamafest which draws members from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Rwanda and Burundi will be officially opened on 4th August at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre while the official closing will be done on 8th of the same month.
The Cabinet Secretary said one of the objectives of Jamafest is to foster the economic development of the EAC through nurturing the growth of a strong creative and cultural industry sector. “This is in tandem with this year’s theme “Unleashing the economic potential of cultural and Creative Industries in the EAC”, he said.
Dr Wario further stated that he festival will strengthen and consolidate the long standing political, economic, social and cultural ties between the peoples of the Partner States thus widening and deepening integration for their mutual benefit. “The festival will also contribute to ongoing initiatives to actualize the Treaty for the Establishment of the EAC besides providing platform and opportunities of marketing cultural and creative commodity outputs within the region and internationally”, said Dr. Wario
“The event will be an epic experience for the city residents like no other. From children’s games such as kati and Kora, to the bao-ajua game of the people of Malindi and amalengo traditional wrestling matches from Budalang’i, there will be more than adequate entertainment for everyone.
There will be performances in music, dance, drama, acrobatics and exhibitions of paintings, carvings, weaving, beading, design and fashion show among others,” said he.
Dr. Wario extended a hand of welcome to people of all walks of live to come and sample the rich culture found in East Africa
Last modified on July 24 2015

Dr. Wario mourns Ojwang

The Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Culture and The Arts Dr. Hassan Wario Has sent a message of condolence to the Family of a Kenyan TV comedian, Benson Wanjau popularly known by his stage name Mzee Ojwang’
The Cabinet Secretary said that it was with profound shock that he learnt of the death of Mzee Ojwang’ Hatari who passed on last week at the Kenyatta National Hospital.
He said that for four decades, Mzee Ojwang’ and his famed Vitimbi group entertained Kenyan television viewers and in many social places. Mzee Ojwang’ also acted in other comedy programmes like Kivunja mbavu and vioja mahakamani. 
Dr. Wario observed that from the tribute paid to him by numerous artists, Mzee Ojwang, inspired many upcoming talents to go into comedy show and will be missed by many Kenyans especially those in the entertainment industry. Until his demise, Mzee was working on contract as an employee of the Ministry of Sports, Culture and the Arts. His contract was due to expire in January next year.
Mzee Ojwang’ was first appointed on 1st July 1998 as an Artist under the then Ministry of National Heritage and Culture at age 61. Over the period, Mzee Ojwang rose through the ranks to become an Assistant Manager (Production) and had his contract renewed several times.
“On my own behalf and on behalf of the Ministry, we wish to convey our most sincere condolence to the Family, the Vitimbi group, friends, relatives and the Artists fraternity for the loss of a household name. 
“It is my prayer that the Lord Almighty will grant his family sufficient Grace and strength to overcome all sorrows during this trying moments as they mourn a beloved member”, said Dr. Wario.
Mzee Ojwang’ will be buried on Wednesday 29th of July at the Lang’ata cemetery. Kenyan artists have organized a tribute show in honour of Mzee Ojwang’ at the Nyayo National stadium on 28th of July, a day before his burial.
Dr. Hassan Wario Arero (PhD)
Cabinet Secretary
July 08 2015

NAME: Jumuiya ya Afrika Mashariki Utamaduni Festival (JAMAFEST)
Vision: A unified East Africa through Arts and Culture
Mission: Promote regional socio-cultural integration through arts and culture
Theme “Unleashing the economic potential of cultural and Creative Industries in the EAC”
Date: 2nd-9th August 2015
Venue; Kenyatta International Convention Centre, Nairobi, Kenya.
Festival Director: Nicholas Ole Moipei
Chairman Local Organising Committee: Mr. Wenslas Ong’ayo

Published in News updates Written by July 08 2015

The second edition of the Jumuiya ya Afrika Mashariki Utamaduni Festival (JAMAFEST) will take place in the city of Nairobi from 2nd to 8th August 2015 at the Kenya International Conference Centre..
The festival whose theme is “unleashing the economic potential of cultural and Creative Industries in the EAC” brings together five Partner States in the East African Community namely; Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, and Kenya, the host.

Re-known Music instructor and Director of the Kenya Music Festival, Nicholas Ole Moipei has been appointed the Director of Jumuiya ya Afrika Mashariki Utamaduni Festival (Jamafest).

The Cultural and Arts Festival which will take place from 2nd to 9th August this year at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre brings together countries in the East Africa block namely Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and the hosts, Kenya.

Ole Moipei’s duties among others include to organize, manage and coordinate the festival in line with the theme to deliver a creative artistic festival, and, to liaise with key Government officials to plan, market and promote the festival.

The appointment letter was signed by the Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Culture and the Arts Dr. Hassan Wario on behalf of the Kenya Government. “I wish to take this opportunity to wish you the very best as we work towards a successful festival in 2015”, said Dr. Wario.

Ole Moipei who has an enviable experience in cultural matters beyond the African continent borders will work with the regional Steering Committee, the Local Organising Committee and technical working Committees, all which are in place and operational.

Mr. Wenslas Ong’ayo, the Director of Administration in the Ministry of Sports, Culture and the Arts in Kenya is the Chairman of the Local Organising Committee.


By Edward Olem, July 2, Nairobi

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