News Brief

Nigerian Artists Might Soon Be Banned From Shooting Videos Abroad

Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, believes that the practice takes away from Nigerian film practitioners and affects the country’s economy.

Nigerian music videos and TV shows that are shot outside of the country might soon become a thing of the past.


The news website allAfrica reports that Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed believes that the practice takes away from Nigerian film practitioners and affects the country’s economy.

“This government has agreed that henceforth, whatever we consume in Nigeria in terms of music and films, must be made in Nigeria,” the site quoted Mohamed saying. “We cannot continue to go to South Africa or any other country to produce our films and then send them back to be consumed in Nigeria. The Broadcasting Code and the Advertising Code are very clear on this. For you to classify a product as a Nigerian product, it must have a certain percentage of Nigerian content.”

His intentions naturally drew criticism from Nigerians, who, according to the Premium Times, asked the minister to address the issue of government officials going for medical treatment abroad first before sanitising the movie industry.

The minister has since addressed this criticism in an interview with the paper, saying that every country is supposed to respect the local industry of other countries. “For example,” he said, “in Ghana they introduced a law today that demands visiting actors to pay a thousand dollars to the government coffers while visiting directors and producers pay 5,000 dollars. We must create an enabling environment and also generate revenue from our creative industry.”

The minister said that there were loopholes in the Nigerian Broadcasting Code (NBC), which he is in the process of amending. “The NBC code today as it stands has been exploited and not defined and that’s why movies being directed by Nigerians with Nigerian actors, actresses can be shot in South Africa and then brought back to be consumed in Nigeria,” he said.

Among some of the artists who have responded to the minister's words is Jude Okoye, who manages the duo P-Square. He expressed his sentiments in an Instagram post, saying that the government was hypocritical because it has never supported the industry in the first place.

Smh. An industry they NEVER encouraged, supported or empowered is what they now want to control,” he wrote. “Let all of you stop running to abroad when you are sick as na Naija money una dey use patronize oyibo hospital dem.”

You can read his full post below, and the minister's interview with the Premium Times here.

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Photo by Alfredo Zuniga / AFP

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