The federal government says it has taken steps to get the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (NBC) to discourage the production of Nigerian movies and music outside the country.
Lai Mohammed, minister of information, made this known on Saturday in Lagos when he paid a visit to the headquarters of the Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON). The minister decried the situation whereby films, reality TV shows and music were made outside Nigeria for consumption by Nigerians.
He said the situation had hampered empowerment of practitioners in the industry, the development of the sector and the nation’s economy in general. “This government has agreed that henceforth, whatever we consume in Nigeria in terms of music and films, must be made in Nigeria,” he said. “We cannot continue to go to South Africa or any other country to produce our films and then send them back to be consumed in Nigeria.
“The Broadcasting Code and the Advertising Code are very clear on this. For you to classify a product as a Nigerian product, it must have a certain percentage of Nigerian content.” The minister noted that what was happening today was that Nigerian artists were often flown out of this country to go and make their recordings. “When they get there, they will patronise the economy of that country and then bring the products back to Nigeria for us to consume. “It is like somebody going to China or Japan to make a product that looks like palm wine and bring it back home to label it Nigerian palm wine.”.
He stressed that “as long as we are not able to implement our own code to ensure local production of Nigerian music and movies, our young talents will not get jobs”. “It is Nigerians that pay for the consumption of these products and therefore they must be allowed and encouraged to participate in their production. “I am going to meet with the relevant stakeholders over this, to see that whatever amendment that is needed to be made to our Broadcasting Code in this regard, is done urgently,” he said.