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FG tasks Censors Board on money-ritual content in films

By Nkechi Onyedika-Ugoeze, Abuja
22 February 2022   |   2:43 am
The Federal Government has directed the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) to regulate the film and video industry and consider taking the issue of money ritual while censoring

[FILES] Nollywood. Photo/ RockciryFM

The Federal Government has directed the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) to regulate the film and video industry and consider taking the issue of money ritual while censoring, classifying content for films and videos.

Federal Government’s directive followed concerns over the increasing rate of ritual killings, especially among Nigerian youths

Government also directed NFVCB to engage stakeholders in the film industry to effectively express its concerns and that of Nigerians on the need to expunge money ritual content or scenes from their movies.

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who disclosed this during a visit to the Daily Trust Newspapers, yesterday, in Abuja, noted that most Nigerians had blamed Nollywood for featuring money rituals in some movies, saying this has negatively influenced the youths.

Mohammed pointed out that there was a high level of concern across the country over the rising cases of ritual killers, most of who are young and seeking to get rich at all costs.

He said: “For those who may still be in doubt, ritual killings have assumed a worrisome dimension in recent years. A non-governmental organisation (NGO), Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND), revealed that over 150 women and girls were killed for ritual purposes between January 2018 and December 2021.

“The NGO said the prevailing situation is driven by rising demand for human body parts for money-making. It added that the trend endangers the safety and security of women and girls. We have therefore decided to use this opportunity to begin the process of raising national awareness on the menace.”

He disclosed that the National Orientation Agency (NOA) under the ministry, was already partnering with religious and traditional organisations, as well as civil society groups to forge behavioural change, especially among the youths, some of who have been afflicted by the get-rich-quick syndrome.

“In the days ahead, the Federal Government plans to launch a national sensitisation campaign against ritual murders in the country,” he stated.

The minister said the fact that some of the ritual killers said they learnt the money-making tricks from some social media platforms had necessitated the government’s campaign to rid social media of unwholesome content.

He said: “Call it social media regulation or whatever, no serious country today will allow its social media space to be suffused with dangerous content. As we have said many times, we have no intention of stifling the media or constricting the social media space. But we will not relent in our efforts to ensure responsible use of social media.”