African Cinema: Chaos In Nollywood Over Federal Government 3Billion Naira Intervention Fund

“The issue of N3 billion Government Intervention Fund which is meant to improve the Nollywood industry has brought about uproar amongst practitioners. ANAEMENA Priscilla Chinenye writes.

When on Saturday, March 2, 2013, President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan honoured Nigerian film makers with a dinner at the State House, Marina, Lagos, his subsequent pronouncements brought smiles to the faces of the digital video-film makers, also known as Nollywood. The dinner, titled ‘Nigeria Celebrates Nollywood’, was organised to celebrate 20 years of the industry.

At the occasion, the president who was represented by the minister of finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala promised a N3 billion intervention fund for the industry, under a programme tagged ‘Project Nollywood’. The fund is to promote the film industry in the country. Though Nigeria’s film industry is older than 20 years, but the March 2 celebration marked the inception of the video and digital filmmaking in Nigeria.

The fund which was earmarked to be launched in April, will include grants for capacity building, infrastructural development and commissioning of best scripts. Also, it will be administered by the Ministry of Finance, headed by Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, in alliance with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism headed by Chief Edem Duke.

Also, a renowned filmmaker Amaka Igwe, a veteran actor in both Yoruba and English language movies, Jide Kosoko; an actress turned producer, Stephanie Okereke-Idahosa, alongside other professionals from the finance, judiciary and education sectors are part of the committee picked by Jonathan for the project.

However, a group of Nollywood stakeholders associated with monitoring practices in the industry are not happy with the choice of some members of the committee and also the modalities of disbursement of the fund.

They suggested that the N3 billion grant should have been made through the Guilds as every guild has its head who is duly elected by members. . .”

Leadership Newspaper has the full story.

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