Lagos – Some actors in the nation’s movie industry popularly known as Nollywood on Monday expressed differing views on the issue of sexual harassment.
The thespians who spoke in separate interviews in Lagos wondered why such an issue should still persist.
Lydia Owan, a budding actress, said that sexual harassment was a thing of choice.
“It is not a question of harassment or what you have; one can only get harassed if she chooses to be.
“I always let my vision and dream drive me to wherever my destiny carries me to in life.
“I always do my best and leave the rest to God. My hard work in the industry fetches me roles,” she said.
An actress and producer, Ebube Nwagbo, said that she had never found herself in such a compromising situation.
“I have never been in a sex for a role position in my career, but I can’t say it doesn’t exist. One thing we all need to know is that movie making is an avenue for making money.
“Will you give roles to somebody that is not marketable because you have had sex with her?
“That is not possible because it takes a lot to make money to put in a movie and the goal is also to make profit from your investment,” Nwagbo said.
“In acting, if you don’t have the talent, you don’t have it; if you can’t act, you can’t act if you like, sleep with all the producers, directors and marketers in Nollywood, it won’t take you to the limelight.
“Before you come into acting, you must have what it takes to be an actor, sleeping with producers won’t make you a star; you must be good at acting.
“Because as a producer, I won’t invest my money in what will not get results and I believe most other producers are the same.
“It’s not easy parting with millions just for sex.’’
Wole Oje, another budding thespian, said that it was only when such a development was made known to all and sundry that the allegation could have some credibility.
“As a man, I have never experienced any sexual harassment or “sex for a role” in my career but that is not to say that it doesn’t exist.
“It is there but it is not good; it’s wrong; it should not be encouraged and should be strongly kicked against,’’ he said.
Another actress, Adaora Ukoh, said that the issue was being over flogged.
“The issue of ‘sex for a role and sexual harassment has been over flogged in my opinion.
Sex for anything is a problem for the whole world now; it is the biggest weapon of the devil right now.
“I don’t think it’s fair narrowing it down to Nollywood because sex for one thing or the other is one of the craziest and cheapest things out there now,’’ she added.
Another upcoming actress, Chinwe Isaac, said that she was very conversant with the issue.
“I have heard about its existence in Nollywood but I’ve never experienced it.
“I want to believe that it depends on how you present yourself, if you cut a desperate picture, I’m sure some unscrupulous element would want to take advantage of you,’’ she said.
Meanwhile, Ibinabo Fiberesima, the President of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), when contacted he said that sexual harassment does not exist in the Nigerian movie industry.
According to Ibinabo, “I have never seen or heard any man or woman that said they have been harassed at one time or the other.
“And if at any point in time you are saying I have been sexually harassed, you should be bold enough to come and tell us so we can take appropriate action.
“I think it’s just hearsay because there’s a lot of hate. When you are not chosen for something, you just create a situation around the person.
“If you have been sexually harassed please come out and let us know and let us know who did it and then we can take action,” she said. (NAN)