President Alphonse Massamba Debat, of Congo-Brazzaville, has called for development of Congolese culture independent of western culture.
Various shots of participants in the festival parading.
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Background: President Alphonse Massamba Debat, of Congo-Brazzaville, has called for development of Congolese culture independent of western culture. Inaugurating a nine-day culture and sports festival in Brazzaville on Tuesday (8 August) the President said foreign-educated citizens risked losing their Congolese identity "because of the tendency to think that the best culture is that of the West."
President Massamba Debat told the artists and sportsmen gathered at the Stadium of the Revolution in Brazzaville to draw on the culture of various other countries to build a new society.
"If we act as though we admire only French culture we shall certainly have a French veneer, but we shall never be Frenchman. We must return to Congolese sources", President Massamba Debat declared.
"We want to resemble the Congolese who can express himself and discuss the whole of French literature, but who can also show Frenchman, Russians and Englishmen a certain fund of what is called Congolese culture," he said.
Tomorrow (Saturday) the country will begin celebrations to mark the fourth anniversary of the revolution which brought President Massamba Debat to power. The festivities will continue until 15 August, the actual date ex-President Fulbert Youlou was deposed in 1963.