The Confucius Institute at the University of Lagos held a gala Wednesday to celebrate the Chinese lunar New Year with dances, food, magic performances, kung fu and a lottery. Up to 300 teachers and students from local primary and secondary schools and universities took part in the celebration. In her opening address, Jiang Lirong, a co-director at the institute, said the Spring Festival was the most important festival in China and to the Chines people. She said the celebration by the Chinese teachers and Nigerian students would cement the friendship between both countries. "We are excited to see members of the university community as well as other Nigerian communities join us in celebrating this very important holiday in the Chinese culture," Jiang said. Duro Oni, deputy chancellor in charge of management services, said the university community wished the Chinese more prosperity in the coming Year of the Horse. Representatives from Chinese, U.S. and French consulates in Lagos also attended the gala. The Lagos Confucius Institute was co-founded by Beijing Institute of Technology and Lagos University in May 2009 to provide Chinese language and culture education for Nigerians.