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Strengthen presence in Nigeria, FG charges streaming firms

By Precious Ogwa
15 May 2022   |   4:00 am
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has called on companies offering streaming services to increase their local investment, including opening offices and increasing the local content on their platforms, if they wish to do business in Nigeria.

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed; Minister of State for FCT, Dr. Ramatu Aliyu and Permanent Secretary of the FCT, Mr. Adesola Oludare at the closing ceremony of the Zuma Film Festival in Abuja… recently.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has called on companies offering streaming services to increase their local investment, including opening offices and increasing the local content on their platforms, if they wish to do business in Nigeria.

The minister, who made the call at the closing ceremony of this year’s the Zuma Film Festival in Abuja, recently, said this would help ensure that content developers reap the benefits of their hard work.

The minister said, “as we celebrate the astronomical growth of our film industry, we must also critically examine whether the creative minds behind this phenomenal growth have reaped the benefits of their hard work. This is why I am delighted with the theme of this year’s festival, which is Show The Money.

“I do hope this year’s festival has shown filmmakers how they could exploit new platforms, not only to see the money, but also to touch and keep it through the increased profitability and global reach of their films.”

The minister paid glowing tribute to the players in the creative industry and said their hard work; ingenuity and persistence have firmly put Nigeria on the global entertainment and cinema map.

His words: “I can boldly state that today, the Nigerian film industry is now the most important platform for showcasing Nigerian arts and culture to the world.”

The Minister listed some of the initiatives taken by the government to bolster the industry to include, making a case for single-digit financing, which resulted in the Creative Industry Financing Initiative by the banks and Central Bank of Nigeria.

He expressed delight that the festival had not just been revived but had grown steadily, since the assumption of office of this administration, adding that the designation of Abuja as the official host city for the film festival, in line with global best practices, is another watershed.

“I want to appreciate the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) for its collaboration with the Nigerian Film Corporation, and for its enormous support for the Zuma Film Festival. It is my hope that preparations for next year’s film festival will commence in earnest, so that we can build on the successes recorded at this year event, with a view to making the city of Abuja a bright spot in the global film festival calendar,” the minister said.

Dignitaries at the event included the Minister of State for the FCT, Hajia Ramatu Aliyu; Chairman House Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values, Mr. Segun Odebunmi; Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Dr. Adaora Ifeoma Anyauwutaku; Permanent Secretary of the FCT, Mr. Adesola Oludare; Managing Director of the Nigerian Film Corporation, Dr. Chidia Maduekwe; Director General, National Council for Arts and Culture, Otunba Segun Runsewe and members of the diplomatic corps, among others.