Entertainers can get Nigeria out of recession – Lai Mohammed

The Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed says that the creative industry has the potential of getting the country out of the present economic recession.

Mohammed said this on the sidelines of the premier of the movie; “My Name is Kadi” , produced by Aisha Mohammed, which starred Blossom Chukwujekwu, Kenneth Okolie, Tina Mba, Slyvya Oluchy, Jide Bolarinwa and Josephine Ramos.

According to the minister, some countries’ of the world have improved their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) from the creative industry.

“There are many countries in the world that have made it from the creative industry; for instance in California, the GDP is largely dependent on the creative industry, which is like the fifth in the world.

“If we put our efforts to handle piracy and ensure quality, Nigeria can as well generate huge revenue from the sector,” Mohammed said.

He commended the efforts of practitioners in the creative industry, adding that they were ahead of the government, and had projected the country’s entertainment industry to limelight.

Mohammed, however, said the government would assist practitioners in the industry to ensure they derived economic benefits from their creative exploits and the country at large.

“The good news is that the artists, musicians, filmmakers have gone so far ahead of government; government needs to catch up with them.

“Few years ago, there was a 2020 vision committee and the idea was that Nigeria by the year 2020 should be one of the 20 foremost film producing countries in the world.

“That was in 2012 and by then we were already number three in the world and this is largely built by the efforts, the passion of the practitioners in the creative industry.

“The government is reaching out to them,” he said.

The minister said there was the need for the guilds and associations in the creative industry to unite so as to gain full support of the government.

According to him, the government can only support organised groups.

“It is not like everything is okay with the creative industry because in recent times we observed that they seem largely unstructured and we want to assist them to get themselves to be better organised.

“Now, we have about 168 guilds and association of film makers within the industry alone.

“There is no way the government can deal with 168 groups, so that is why we are assisting them get through the Motion Picture Practitioners Council of Nigeria (MOPICON) bill.

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