NICO partners censors board on inclusion of cultural content in Nollywood movies

The National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) has indicated interest to partner with the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) on inclusion of at least 20 per cent of cultural content in films produced in Nigeria.

This agreement was reached when Chief Biodun Ajiboye, Executive Secretary  of NICO received Dr Shaibu Husseini, Executive Director of NFVCB, in his office on Wednesday in Abuja, to explore areas of collaboration toward achieving the renewed hope agenda of the present administration

Ajiboye, in a statement through his Media Aide, Caleb Nor, on Thursday, said the level at which Nigerian films had permeated the social fabrics of the world was a clear indication that films were the most potent instrument for behavioural modification.

He said unless Nigeria gets to the point of having a proper cultural identity and character, its search for a national identity would remain a mirage.

“Until a nation has proper cultural identity, it cannot have a national identity and when a nation does not have a national identity, it cannot have a national character.

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“The Chinese saw culture as a very important and potent part of life and national development.

“When they were trying to come up with the Chinese revolution, culture was the most important thing they took with them and you and I can see where China is today in the equation of the world.

“We need to reach a consensus between us in the form of policy realignment. We want to ask humbly that if you can allow at least 20 percent of cultural content into all the films you want to approve as a matter of policy.

“We cannot afford as a people to ignore or neglect our cultural antecedents and therefore must return to our cultural values.

“If we are able to retrace our steps back to our cultural values, we are likely to have a saner society than what we have today. All these issues of banditry, kidnapping and corruption are as a result of the neglect of our cultural values.

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“We stand before the world today to either rescue Nigeria or allow it to perish. We have a responsibility to key into the renewed hope agenda of Mr President such that in every situation we find ourselves, we should be able to contribute positively to the success of this administration,” he said.

In his remarks, Husseini said the board had the responsibility of regulating the content, exhibition and distribution of films and whatever the Nigerian society watches.

He noted that the visit was to seek ways of partnership with the institute in carrying out its orientation programmes where they could have a spot to talk to people about the need for media literacy.

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“Media literacy has a lot to do with understanding and appreciating the different kinds of contents people watch.

“We are moving from a stage where we are no longer bothered about censorship because we don’t want people to claim that we are stopping them from expressing their creative abilities.

“We are also moving to a scheme where we want to be encouraging movies that speaks to us as a country on how resilient we are as a people.

“We are also thinking about encouraging a lot of people to go into language films because we are fast losing our languages; and I know one thing; NICO has institutionalised and it is known for its indigenous language programmes.

“We want to partner with you in our effort to encourage a lot of language movies. We want a situation where we can produce more language movies where we can also help NICO in their instructional language programmes,” he said.

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