Side By Side, We are Commemorating  Our Common History- Ambassador Peter Holasek, Slovak Ambassador to Nigeria

From L to R: Mr. Vitalis Njoku, President, Nigeria Slovakia Chamber of Commerce; Mr. Marek Skolil, The Czech Ambassador to Nigeria; Senator Yusuf Abubakar, Chairman of the Committee for Science and Technology, National Assembly; and Mr. Peter Holasek, Slovak Ambassador to Nigeria at the occasion of the 100th Anniversary founding of Czechoslovakia at the French Institute in Abuja.
Photo Credit: Ambassador Peter Holasek.

By Victor Gotevbe,

ABUJA: The Embassies of Slovak Republic and Czech Republic in Abuja held a movie festival at the French Institute from October 22 to 25, in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the founding of ­­Czech0slovakia. This climaxed with a cocktail on Thursday. The event had in attendance, the Slovak Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Peter Holásek; the Czech Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Marek Skolil; Vice Chairman of the Committee for Science and Technology, National Assembly and also Chairman of the Nigeria-Slovakia Chamber of Commerce, Senator Abubakar Yusuf; and Mr. Vitalis Njoku, President of the Nigeria Slovakia Chamber of Commerce, among other dignitaries

His Excellency, Ambassador Holasek in his remarks reminded the audience of the importance of the founding of the First Czechoslovak Republic a 100 years ago, which in 2018, is celebrated as “a Czech and Slovak century.”

He stated further that it serves as reminder to both countries of their 25 years of two independent republics: Czechia and Slovakia, both firmly integrated in the European community of democratic states.

Vice Chairman of the Committee for Science and Technology, National Assembly and also Chairman of the Nigeria-Slovakia Chamber of Commerce, Senator Abubakar Yusuf at the Cocktail
Photo Credit: Ambassador Peter Holasek

Ambassador Holasek, went memory lane as he cited very “interesting coincidence that most of the turning points of the past century happened in the years ending with number “8”. As a result, we commemorate this year also 70 years from the Communist coup in 1948, when our country lost its freedom and fell under the dominance of the Soviet Union” he remarked.

Ambassador Peter Holasek and Mr. Zaheer Khan, MD/CEO at Cotea International Nigeria Ltd

He added that this year brings to remembrance the 50 years from the Soviet-led invasion to Czechoslovakia in 1968. “These painful historical moments remind us that freedom and democracy shall never be taken for granted. This may sound especially relevant today, as the forces of populism and extremism are growing stronger again,” he said.

Ambassador Peter Holasek concluded his speech inspiringly, as he noted “although we divided into two new states in 1993, it was a peaceful divorce appreciated by the entire civilized world. And even though we have passed through the sometimes stormy history in the best sense of the word, we can be proud that today, side by side, we commemorate our common history.”

Ambassador Peter Holasek, Embassy of Slovak Republic in Nigeria giving some remarks during one of the screening of the movies.
Photo Credit: Mr. Vitalis Njoku

The Czech & Slovak Movie Festival screened films from different perio­­ds of the past 100 years including Animation, horror movie, family comedy and comedy-drama. The Slovak Ambassador did not fail to thank the French Institute who had supported them in putting together the film festival, which is also a reflection of how France backed establishing of the independent Czechoslovakia in 1918.