…Directs BOI, Export, Import Bank, to release funds for Camera men
By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA – PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said that Nigeria was a typical example of how trouble makers were using various media platforms to propagate negative and divisive messages.
President Buhari has also directed the Bank of Industry and the Nigeria Export-Import Bank to engage members of the Motion Picture Practitioners Association of Nigeria, MOPPAN, to release affordable working capital to them.
Speaking when he audience with members of MOPPAN at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, the President noted with regret that some of the negative reports have led to loss of lives and destruction of property.
According to him, “Nigeria today is a clear example of how a few trouble makers are using various media platforms to propagate negative and divisive messages. In some instances, these mischievous acts have led to lives being destroyed, homes broken and communities divided.”
He acknowledged the progress made by MOPPAN despite the challenges, adding that their journey so far was commendable and congratulated them for continued commitment and determination to succeed.
He said, “Today, millions rely on your industry when it comes to current affairs and social issues. I am informed that your output reaches up to 70 million people across many countries within and outside Africa.
“Such outreach means you have a moral and professional obligation to ensure that your story telling is not only entertaining but also addresses serious matters affecting societies today.
“I am glad to learn that you refer to yourselves as entertainers and educators. This means you are very much aware of your responsibilities to propagate positive messages to your audience.
“It is our collective responsibility to ensure that entertainers, regulators and censorship boards do the right thing by insisting on observation of cultural norms and protection of national interest.
“I have been informed of the progress made on your interactions with the Moroccan entertainment industry.
“As you are aware, Nigeria in the last two years has established a mutually beneficial relationship with the Kingdom of Morocco especially in the Agricultural sector.”
Continuing, Buhari said, “In our engagements, I learnt that Morocco also has a vibrant film industry that is globally recognized as a shining example of Africa’s entertainment capability.
“Based on this, I have directed that, in addition to agriculture, Nigeria should also explore potential partnership opportunities with the Moroccan entertainment industry.
“I understand some of you were part of the various delegations, at both Federal and State levels, to have visited Morocco to explore partnership opportunities in the last 12 months.
“As you may be aware, I have signed an instrument of ratification of the World Intellectual Property Organization on audio-visual performances.
“On funding, I have already directed the Bank of Industry and the Nigeria Export – Import Bank to engage your sector by providing affordable working capital. This funding will unlock some of the trapped potentials in the entertainment industry, leading to growth.
“Furthermore, I am tasking the Minister of Finance and Governor of Central Bank to ensure that these financial institutions immediately commence the engagement.