Nigeria to protect creative industry, fast track commercialisation 

Solomon Chung, Lagos 

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Nigeria's Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed

The Nigerian government has vowed to protect the creative works and investments of the creative industry in the country.

The government has also mapped out plans to set the industry as one of its topmost priority for year 2020.

Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Muhammed said at the 2019 AFRIMA Awards ceremony that the successful commercialisation of the creative industry was the government’s number one priority.

 “It will create jobs, reduce crime, be a major source of foreign exchange and thereby reduce our dependence on oil, rebrand our country internationally and boost our GDP,” he said.

The Minister said the government was tackling all impediments to the growth of the industry to ensure it thrives.

“We are making cheaper and longer term financing available for the industry, especially for infrastructural projects, like Concert halls across the 6 geo-political zones of the country, as recently announced by the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.” 

The Minister also announced that the collective societal issues that have plagued successive administrations have now been put on the front burner by the Attorney General.

“People who use music must pay for it, no more excuses. The other big issue for commercialisation is the digital economy – data must be cheaper and owners of content must make more money from the use of their works.”

Mr. Mohammed said the government was  also cleaning up the advertising industry and making sure proper Measurement of content exists and are collated.

When concluded it promises to add at least 50 billion Naira annually to the Creative Sector, he said.

“We will continue to play our role in government and make sure the business of music works for all hard working folks who engage in it.”

Meanwhile, the Head of Culture, African Union, Angela Martins, said the AFRIMA awards  was aimed at bringing Africans together  to celebrate the continent’s heritage  together.

“We must continue to work for the success of Africa…”

Also, the Executive Producer of AFRIMA, Mr Mike Dada said the event will continue to get better and also communicate to the world the vision of the continent.

On the night, Congolese music legend Awilo Longomba and Nigerian sensation 2face Idibia received the legendary awards while Burna Boy won the Africa artist of the year 2019, Wizkid/Tiwa Savage, with the song, Fever won song of the year award.