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NFVCB clamps down on pornographic, unclassified film vendors in Lagos

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Officials of the NFVCB during raid of unclassified film vendors in Lagos on Wednesday.

Raid

Lagos, July 24, 2019 The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) on Wednesday carried out a raid on sellers of pornographic and other unclassified local and foreign films at Oshodi Market in Lagos State.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that officers of the board who were trained as Supernumerary (SPY) Police on Illicit Trade, Security and Enforcement Duties, accompanied by men of the Nigeria Police Force, carried out the operations at Oshodi Market.

Multiple-in-One pirated foreign film, local films in DVDs and CDs were among items seized from the vendors, while three suspects were arrested.

NAN reports that NFVCB, is a Federal Government body that regulates the films and video industry in Nigeria.

It is empowered by law to classify all films and videos, whether imported or produce locally.

Alhaji Adedayo Thomas, Executive Director of NFVCB, said the raid was part of the nationwide enforcement operations against unlicenced and unclassified films recently launched by the board to protect the nation’s movie industry.

He explained that some officers of the board were recently trained at the Nigeria Police College on the rampage against pirated and illegal films and video works across Nigeria.

“The board has scaled up its enforcement activities for the year to ensure that evil business of illegal becomes unbearable for those that have seen it as a means of making quick money.

“As part of the NFVCB zero-tolerance stance against all uncensored and unclassified films, we are working closely with the Nigeria Police.

“One hundred and fifty of our officers have just completed training at the Police College as Spy Police on illicit trade, security and enforcement duties.

“The board will ensure total sanity of the film industry to ensure rightful owners of films and video works enjoy the fruits of their hard labour,” he said.

According to him, those arrested would be made to face the wrath of the law in line with the enabling Acts of the board.

Thomas, however, urged vendors of films to ensure that only films with the classification code were sold by them, adding that all foreign films currently being sold in the Nigerian markets were illegal.

The executive director added that though, the board was not shutting out foreign films and video works, the protection of local content was crucial in its operations.

“Our local films and video works that are licenced and classified by the board should be encouraged to thrive and bring profit to their owners.

“Apart from the ones we have in the cinemas, which are licenced by the board, other foreign films available in the markets are illegal products.

“Licencing and classification of imported films are part of the board’s mandate and any foreign film that has to be sold in the country or aired on our local stations needs its approval.

“First, you must show to the board that there is a proper collection of copyright from the owner of the foreign film from the originating country.

“Then, such films must be sent to us for censorship and classification in order to ascertain whether it connotes with the Nigeria’s classification code,” he said.

Also, Mr Emeka Aduah, the President, Film and Video Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria (FVPMAN), who was part of the raid, commended NFVCB for the initiative and pledged the support of the association.

He, therefore, urged marketers and distributors of films to ensure that they sell only films approved by the board.

“Piracy is a major challenge facing our members, and that is why we are supporting the NFVCB efforts at cleaning the markets.

“If the retailers of this pirated stop patronising the pirates that produce them, their markets will die naturally,” he said.

Edited By: Modupe Adeloye/Olagoke Olatoye

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COVID-19: NFVCB urges Nollywood to promote precautionary measures

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The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB)  has called on Nollywood stakeholders  to  promote government’s precautionary measures  against the spread of coronavirus pandemic.

The Executive Director of NFVCB, Mr Adebayo Thomas, made  the call in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency on Sunday  in Abuja.

According to Thomas, there is an urgent need to sensitise more Nigerians to observe precautionary measures prescribed  by health authorities against coronavirus pandemic.

He said  that actors had strong influence on the public, especially their fans, and should use social media platforms  to lend their voices to the call for citizens’ adherence to the safety guidelines.

“Although, I do not encourage actors to come out in groups, individually they should be able to educate Nigerians, especially their fans, because they are role models.

“They should support and promote the government’s sit-at-home order for all to live and build a stronger industry after the pandemic.

“Every Nollywood stakeholder should  support government directives in  the collective fight against coronavirus pandemic and use  his influence to  educate the public in the right direction.

“We must all obey the lockdown instruction, wash our hands always  and use sanitisers regularly, even as the government is doing everything possible to prevent the spread of the COVID-19,” he said.

The NFVCB chief regretted the harsh realities of the disease on global economy, including  the  creative sector and the motion picture industry in particular.

He, however, expressed hope that the tough time would pass in all aspects of national life.

He extolled the Federal Government, health institutions and  governments of affected states, especially  Lagos, for  being proactive and steadfast in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We must be hopeful and prayerful and at the same time be thankful   to all the medical teams and other stakeholders  battling the pandemic for the safety of all.

“We should always remember and support them in our prayers, especially the medical teams, the police and other security agents keeping the peace,” Thomas said.

NAN reports that the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control has advised  that frequent washing of hands with soap under running water or using alcohol-based sanitisers is expedient  in preventing the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other measures include covering of mouth and nose properly with a tissue paper when sneezing and/or coughing and disposal of the paperly properly immediately after use.

Members of the public are also advised to avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.

Recall that President Muhammadu  Buhari  on March 29 ordered lockdown of the Federal Capital Territory and Lagos and Ogun states to check the spread of COVID-19.

According to Buhari, the lockdown, which took effect from 11 p.m. on March 30, would be for an initial period of 14 days.

Some state governments have also declared lockdown to prevent  the spread of coronavirus.

JOSH/

Edited By: Chinyere Bassey/Ijeoma Popoola
(NAN)

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The war on piracy is continuous- NFVCB 

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The Executive Director, Nigeria Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), Mr Adebayo Thomas, on Monday said the war on piracy was continuous.

 

The Executive Director made the declaration on the sideline of a news conference to begin activities for the 20th anniversary of the Directors’ Guild of Nigeria (DGN).

 

Thomas commended all stakeholders in the movie industry for their effort adding that their support made it easy to tackle the monster.

 

He also commended parents and guardians for putting the board on its toes in ensuring that motion pictures were censored.

 

“I want to commend the stakeholders as it is a big fight on piracy. The war is a continuous one.

 

“In the last two weeks, I have been to 12 police stations writing statements. Presently, Alagbon police station has three persons in custody for piracy.

 

“I will also commend parents for calling our attention to certain movies which had helped in our enforcement.

 

“Billions of pirated compact discs (CD’s) had been destroyed since I assumed office and we will not relent,” he said.

 

Thomas while speaking on cartoon censorship for children said the Act makes it difficult as it is either watched online or on paid view.

 

“Cartoons are watched either online or on the television. So it is the duty of the parent to monitor whatever they choose to subscribe for.

 

“No foreign compact disc is classified or censored, so, I repeat, all foreign discs are banned because you need to give us intellectual right of the owner before import.

 

“Bringing in all sorts of foreign materials without proper monitoring drops our intellectual property rating.

 

“What we are doing is to reduce piracy to the barest minimum.

 

“We know that as long as the creative industry is growing, the hoodlums will continue and we will not relent,” he said.

Edited By: Bola Akingbehin/Donald Ugwu
(NAN)

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NFVCB Boss task officers, Nollywood on precautions towards COVID-19

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Mr Adedayo Thomas, the Executive Director, National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), has called on its staff  and Nollywood  stakeholders  to  adhere to  precautionary measures prescribed  by health authorities toward preventing Corona Virus (COVID-19).

Thomas made the call on Wednesday during an interactive session with management and members of staff of the board at its headquarters in Abuja.

According to Thomas, the  work of the officials of the NFVCB and Nollywood players require that they interact with people closely and therefore demands strict compliance with  public health advisory on the COVID-19).

He noted that the NFVCB as the regulator of the motion picture industry work with large numbers of people in its activities most of the times, especially in its media literacy and capacity building programmes.

“The stakeholders are the reason we exist as a government regulatory body, but in serving them, we should also take precaution by abiding with preventive measures as recommended by relevant authorities.

“We must avoid unnecessary loitering in crowded places and apply the use of hand-wash and sanitisers regularly, even as the Federal Government is doing everything possible to prevent the spread of the COVID-19.

“The Nollywood actors and filmmakers also need to be careful, especially as they move to different locations in doing their job.

“As a public institution, the NFVCB has provided hand sanitisers at our reception and other strategic places within our areas of operation for the regular use of both staff and visitors,” he said.

NAN recalls that on Feb. 27, Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, confirmed the index case of COVID-19 coronavirus disease in Lagos, Nigeria.

Ehanire declared the first established patient as an Italian citizen, from Milan, Italy, who came into Nigeria through the Lagos Airport on Feb. 25.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) thereafter released public health advisory on the COVID-19 to Nigerians, which included frequent washing of hands with soap under running water or using alcohol-based sanitizers if water is not available.

Others include covering of mouth and nose properly with a tissue paper when sneezing and/or coughing and dispose of the tissue properly immediately after use.

Members of the public are also advised to avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.

Edited By: Grace Yussuf (NAN)

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Stop selling foreign films, NFVCB warns traders

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The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) on Saturday warned miscreants, foreign films traders and others engaged in illegal businesses in the movie industry to desist from such dubious acts.

Mr Adedayo Thomas, NFVCB Executive Director, gave the warning in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Lagos.

He said that foreign films were illegal, uncensored and unclassified, therefore unacceptable in the country.

He, therefore, urged those who trade in foreign films to desist from such illegal act because when caught, offenders would be dealt with ruthlessly.

He disclosed that about five offenders were already in court while others whose uncensored movies were seized and burnt were being educated by the board on the kind of films to sell.

“Foreign films in this country are totally banned, they are illegal and we seek the collaboration of the customs and other law enforcement agencies to help us sanitise the creative industry.

” Foreign films are against the growth of the country, they come in illegally without censorship, classification and the property right of the owners and that reduces our rating in terms of intellectual property right.

” So it is a total ban for all foreign films, the only ones allowed are those in the cinemas because we have been able to manage the cinemas and censored them,” he said.

The Executive Director said that with 60 cinemas in the country, 55 had been classified and censored by the board.

Thomas said that the board had a meeting on Jan. 16 with Africa Magic Yoruba, Hausa and Igbo alongside Multichoice to address the issue of obscene musical videos and movies on various television channels.

He said that the board had advised them to desist from showcasing uncensored and unapproved movies and musical videos as any television station found defaulting would be shut down completely.

” We have made them realise that most of the movies they air are uncensored and unclassified, so we are watching them henceforth,” he said.

Edited By: Dorcas Jonah/Wale Ojetimi

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We’ll protect you against multiple Taxation, NFVCB assures Lagos filmmakers

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The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) on Friday assured filmmakers in Lagos State that it would protect them against multiple taxation.

Mr Adedayo Thomas, Executive Director of the Board, gave the assurance in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency on the sidelines of the Public Burning of Confiscated Illicit, Unwholesome and Unapproved Movies and Video Works in Lagos.

NAN reports that the clarification became necessary following speculations that filmmakers in the state would soon start paying tax to the board.

“I assure our filmmakers and other stakeholders that there won’t be anything like double taxation.

“The NFVCB will liase with the LSFVCB, the Guild of Filmmakers, Actors, Directors and other stakeholders to draw up a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and resolve the issue,” Thomas said.

According to him, such policy, if implemented, would negate the policy of President Muhammadu Buhari on the Ease of Doing Business (EODB) which has zero tolerance for double taxation.

The Executive Director noted that although film regulation is on the Concurrent Legislative List, the constitution, however, provides that the federal law in that regard supersede and overrides any other law.

“There have been several calls and complaints for us to harmonise our position with LSFVCB and we are much open to dialogue in order not to stalk the current progress and success of the film industry.

“Double Taxation and conflict of regulatory activities do not encourage investment, but rather frustrates ongoing investment,” he said.

Mr Ralph Nwadike, Chairman, Association of Video Producers of Nigeria, also told NAN that such policy, as conceived, would negate the essence of the EODB and would affect the growth of the industry if allowed to thrive.

“We need a level playing field to ensure that taxation is channeled through only one source and preferable this should be collected by the National board, which is NFVCB .

“If Lagos State is allowed to implement such policy, it means other states across the federation would also follow suit and claim rights to tax filmmakers which we see as exploitative,” he said.

Edited By: Remi Koleoso/Wale Ojetimi

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NFVCB burns illicit movies worth N100m in Lagos

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The National Films and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) on Friday publicly burnt over 30,000 seized illicit movies and video works worth N100 million in Lagos.

Mr Adedayo Thomas, Executive Director of the board, among other stakeholders in the movie industry, conducted the exercise at NFVCB Office at Alagbon, Ikoyi.

Thomas said that the operation would be a continuous exercise until piracy was completely curbed in the country.

He said that most of the seized materials were pornographic and other obnoxious materials illegally imported into the country.

According to him, the board is strongly determined to stamp out the distribution of illicit movies to safeguard the future of the nation.

“Our collaboration across board has led to massive seizure of pornographic films and other unwholesome video works by our Lagos zonal office.

“That is why we are here to carry out the symbolic burning of the seized items worth N100m.

“We have done this in Abuja, Kaduna and was done at Kano yesterday, while South-East and South-South states will follow suit,” he said.

Thomas said that the board’s strategic approach to improving the creative industry growth through approvals and support for cinemas had led to huge economic impact and increase in revenue growth.

“Recent Box Office earnings indicate that Nigerians spent about N7 billion on tickets at the cinemas in the year 2019, a 200 per cent increase from about N2 billion spent in the year 2018, grossing more than N1billion in December 2019 alone.

“The Nigerian film industry also recently surpassed India’s Bollywood to become the second largest industry on the planet, after Hollywood, and was awarded the new emerging film market.

“We have introduced licensing certificates and labels with digital security features to prevent counterfeiting.

” We have also created a confirmation desk to duly authenticate approved film distributors, exhibitors and video works,” he said.

The Executive Director urged parents and guardians to influence children and their wards to go for only films and video works classified by the board.

Veteran Nollywood actress, Hilda Dokunbo, an Ambassador to the board, commended the exercise, which she said was aimed at protecting the creative industry practitioners’ trade and right.

“It is a beautiful development that illegal materials could be seized and burnt in this country; it is indeed a laudable achievement.

“We say thank you to the board for this legal action taken against pirates,” she said.

Also, Mr Emeka Aduah, Chairman, Film Video Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria, said that the burning of illicit movies had rekindled the hope of Nigerian movie producers and marketers.

“The exercise is a good one, we have not seen such before in the history of the censors board; it is a good way to start the year,” he said.

Edited By: Edwin Nwachukwu/Oluwole Sogunle

 

 

 

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NFVCB destroys, warns against distribution of illicit films in Kano

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The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), on Thursday destroyed pornographic and other prohibited films seized from markets in Kano.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that items destroyed included DVDs, CDs, copies of multiple-in-one video films, unclassified foreign and local films, pornographic contents and other illicit video works.

NFVCB had warned stakeholders against the sales and distribution of unclassified movies and video works.

Mr Adedayo Thomas, NFVCB’s Executive Director, while addressing industry stakeholders said that the items were seized in several raids on illicit film outlets and dealers across the state.

According to him, the action is in furtherance of the board’s zero-tolerance against unapproved films and video works across Nigeria.

He said the raid was aimed at sanitising the motion picture industry for lawful businesses in film ventures to strive.

He said that although there are enabling censors laws that prohibit pornographic contents, distribution and exhibition of uncensored and unclassified films, “many industry players are bent on taking the laws in their hand’’.

Thomas, therefore, advised filmmakers, distributors and exhibitors in the North-West to shun illicit films for the protection of the Nigerian child and safeguarding the values and morals that define the African people.

“Our enforcement drive resulted in the removal of these pornographic and other unapproved films and video works worth millions of Naira.

“The Federal Government has been promoting avenues to continually diversify the economy to promote growth and pursue strategic objectives of job creation, youth empowerment, improved human capital and improved business.

“If the creative industry is in a mess, investors will not come; that is why we are cleaning the market for film owners to enjoy the reward for their work,’’ Thomas said.

The NFVCB boss attributed the success in its operations to the unrelenting activities of its task force that had been raiding illegal film outlets across the country.

The director said that the collaboration of the Police had sped up the arrest and prosecution of marketers and distributors of illicit films and video works.

In a goodwill message, a traditional ruler, Alhaji Abdulahi Lamido-Sanusi, District Head of Dala commended the censor’s board for its commitment to sanitising the Nigerian movie industry.

He urged filmmakers and distributors in the state to consider the moral and cultural implications of their works.

“Our youths and culture need to be protected for us to have a better society by producing only lawful films as approved by the censor’s board,’’ Lamido-Sanusi, said.

In his remark, Mr Umar Fage, North-East Zonal Coordinator of the NFVCB called on filmmakers to always submit their works for censoring and approval by the board as required by law.

“Our laws prohibit the sales and distribution of pornographic films in Nigeria and we want everyone to realise this,’’ Fage said.

NAN reports that men of the Federal Fire Service, representatives of the state government and leaders of Arewa Filmmakers Association as well as other industry guild members were among stakeholders present at the event.

Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde/Grace Yussuf

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Nollywood: NFVCB empowers 200 youths in Maiduguri

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The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) on Thursday organised a capacity building on film classification for 200 youths in Maiduguri and provided them with start-up grant and packs.

Nigeria News Agency reports that NFVCB organised the programme in collaboration with the State’s Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development.

The beneficiaries, drawn from different Local Government Areas, including IDP camps, were trained and made ‘Community Ambassadors’ of the NFVCB against unclassified films and harmful video contents in the state.

Mr Adedayo Thomas, Executive Director of the NFVCB, said the event was in furtherance of the board’s capacity building and mentorship initiative in the creative sector for youths in the North East.

According to him, Maiduguri is chosen for the event to complement the state government’s effort at ensuring that youths are positively engaged.

“This is another programme in our implementation series for zonal intervention projects on youth and women capacity building and media literacy.

“Over the last nine months, we have touched all the regions of the country and we are glad we could extend this here in partnership with the Borno State Ministry of Women and Social Development.

“This programme entails the sensitisation of youths on the importance of film classification and censorship as well as the various openings in the film and video sector that they can leverage to empower themselves.

“The participants will be inaugurated today as NFVCB ambassadors and given mobile phones each for easy contact with the board to help in sanitising and protecting our cultural and social values as a nation,” said.

Thomas commended the state for the collaboration, adding that young talents abound in the state that needed to be given necessary support and enabling environment.

He, therefore, urged the state government to create film villages to serve as hubs for the incubation and nurturing of talents and to boost job creation and revenue in the state.

He added that there was need for the state to create its Film Classification Board in order to properly oversee development of its movie industry, preserve and protect cultural and moral values.

“The people can tell their own compelling stories in their local languages and sell to the world through transliteration and subtitling.

“We believe there is an urgent need to tap into the inherent opportunities and gains for the State, as Nigeria is now the New Emerging Film Market in the global space,” he said.

Gov. Babagana Zulum of Borno, who was the Special Guest of Honour, commended the NFVCB and the state Ministry of Women Affairs for the initiative.

The Governor, who was represented by the Commissioner for Youths and Sports, Mr Saryinna Buba, said the state would work with the NFVCB to harness the creative potentials in the state.

Earlier in her remarks, Zuwaira Gambo, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, said the ministry, was committed to collaborations that would engender development in the state.

Gambo, who is also a board member of the NFVCB, said the beneficiaries were carefully selected in order of needs and talents.

“There are youths from IDP camps selected for this training to enable them become engaged as part of government’s rehabilitation and empowerment efforts.

NAN reports that seasoned industry players and management team of the NFVCB, as well as top government officials from the state were present at the event.


JOSH/IS

 

Edited by Ismail Abdulaziz

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Nollywood: Gov. Ayade, NFVCB Boss honoured at AIFF 2019

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Gov. Ben Ayade of Cross Rivers and Mr Adedayo Thomas, the Chief Executive, National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) have been honoured for their contributions to the development of the Nigerian movie industry.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that they were given the Special Recognition Award in the non-competitive category at the 2019 Abuja International Film Festival (AIFF) on Friday night at the closing ceremony and awards night of the festival.

Mr Allen Onyema, the Managing Director of Air peace, was also honoured in the non-competitive category of the AIFF awards.

Presenting the awards, Mr Fidelis Duker, the Founder of AIFF said the recipients were selected in recognition of their support and contributions to the growth and development of the Nigerian movie industry.

He noted that the NFVCB Chief Executive had repositioned the film and video regulatory body and provided a friendly environment for filmmakers.

“The Censors board under his watch is doing a great job by providing a better regulatory environment for filmmakers to strive.”

In his remark, the NFVCB chief who was present to receive the award, appreciated the organisers on behalf of other recipients.

Thomas, appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2017 to head the NFVCB, expressed delight that the award was an indication that the society was interested in whatever one did.

“This recognition clearly shows that people are concerned and are watching how we do our work in building the industry.

“I want to assure filmmakers that we are set to do more for the industry, as we sanitise the market of all uncensored and unclassified films.

“As stakeholders, we need their cooperation and support for us to serve them better as government agency,” he said.

NAN reports that the awards in the competitive category include Outstanding Actor and the Outstanding Actress, First Time Director Award, Outstanding Feature Film – (foreign and Nigeria), and the Outstanding Film In Directing.

Others are Outstanding Short Film (Foreign and Nigeria), Outstanding Music Score Nominee, Outstanding Animation film and Outstanding Student Film Nominee, among others.

Now in its 16th Edition, Abuja International Film Festival is a fiesta that showcases films, actors, producers within and outside Nigeria to foster interactions for co-production, distribution and investments.

The 2019 edition was held from Oct. 22 to Oc. 25 at the Silverbird Galleria .

Edited by: Grace Yussuf
(NAN)

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Contact US: editor @nnn.com.ng, nnnnews247 @gmail.com

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