Namibia calls for collaboration with Nigeria on entertainment sector

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Namibia has described Nigeria as a home of many opportunities especially in the entertainment sector.

Chairman, Namibia Film Commission (NFC), Mr Joel Haikali, said this noting that there are many opportunities for collaboration between Namibian filmmakers and their Nigerian counterparts.

Haikali said this during the Actors Master Class segment of the ongoing 9th Africa International Film Festival (AFRIFF), at Film House Cinemas, Landmark Village, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria.

Haikali said that Nigerian filmmakers could explore collaborative opportunities like introducing Namibian films into the Nigerian market in exchange for Nigerian films.

Other areas of collaboration, he said, included building capacity in the Namibian film industry, formal trainings and exhibitions.

He said in a bid to promote cooperation between Namibians and other filmmakers for the creation of African content, the Namibia Film Commission had launched the Nixau Toma Film Fund.

“The NFC has committed up to one million Namibian dollars for this initiative.

“The country creates over 1,000 jobs through film making annually.

“Our industry is such a lucrative one which has recorded huge success over the years.

“In the last three years, 200 million Namibian dollars was spent for filmmaking,” the NFC chairman said.

Haikali said that with the success recorded in the country, South Africa, Germany, United Kingdom, France and the United States of America would soon prefer Namibia as a film destination.

“In Namibia, documentaries are most popular followed by commercials, corporate videos, photography and television lifestyle shows.

“Since inception, the commission through the Namibia Government has fully funded 45 films, 25 short films, 11 feature films, one web series, two television series and six documentaries,” he said.

Earlier, at the opening ceremony of the AFRIFF on Sunday, Nigeria’s Minister for Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, commended the organiser of the programme, Chioma Ude and other women in the creative industry.

He said the theme for the 2019 AFRIFF, which is “SHEROES”, tried to support more female film makers in the creative industry.

“Indeed, it won’t be out of place to say that women are taking increasingly leading roles in the creative industry and this is quite delightful as women most often succeed when they take charge.

“The examples are there to see, particularly, in the creative industry.

“I, therefore, implore the women of the creative industry not to relent in showing the way in this great industry.

“I commend the organiser of this year’s AFRIFF for using it to celebrate women,” Mohammed said.

He promised government’s continuous support to the creative industry, saying it had been evident in previous years.

“Government will continue to support the creative industry; the evidence of our support can be seen clearly in granting the industry the pioneer status, improving access to long-term, low-cost financing for entrepreneurs and investors in the creative industry.

“This can also be seen in the information technology sector through the Central Bank of Nigeria’s financing initiative (CIFI),” he said.

The Minister also said that the Federal Government was planning to finalise work on the Motion Picture Council of Nigeria (MOPICON) Bill.

According to him, the Bill is to create a proper regulatory environment for the sub-sector that had put Nigeria’s name on the global map to attract the needed investment to the industry.

He added that the MOPICON Bill will also establish the endowment fund for the arts to create a legal framework for the financing of the creative industry.

“These and more are our plans for this burgeoning Industry,” he said.