By Benjamin Njoku
Popular film maker, Erhahon Edward Osaretinmwe a.k.a Eddy Young has heaved a sigh of relief after the proposed 5% levy on producers of musical and audio visual works in Lagos State was not allowed to see the light of the day.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State recently suspended from office of Mr. Dele Balogun, Executive Secretary of the Lagos State Film and Video Censors Board,LEFVCB, for announcing an unlawful five percent levy on producers of musical and audio visual works in the state.
In a chat with NollyNow, the producer of the movie, ‘Kasanova’, stated that when the announcement was initially made he thought it was just another gimmick by the government to attract attention.
“To my surprise, some film licensing companies started receiving letters supposedly from the government on the said 5% tax. It was and still is a bad idea considering the fact that the government hasn’t done much to grow the industry. You can’t impose tax on the practitioners if you are not doing anything to their working environment,” he said.
According to Eddy Young, only countries where film villages and film studios are built by the government to encourage the growth of the industry can impose tax on the filmmakers.
“I’m happy the levy didn’t see the light of the day. I’m hoping that the next time we will hear about imposing tax on the practitioners, the government would have done enough to help grow the industry.” Eddy Young’s debut feature production, ‘Kasanova’, made it to Netflix this year, maintaining number one position for weeks. He also defied the COVID19 pandemic to release a web series titled ‘The Badchelors.’