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FG has approved the prohibition of Smoking, Money Rituals and Ritual Killing Scenes in Nollywood Movies, Music Video and Skits

In a significant move to reshape the narrative and influence of Nigerian cinema, the Federal Government has taken a bold step by approving a prohibition on the depiction of Money Rituals, Smoking and Ritual Killings the glamorization of certain vices in films. This decision, announced by Dr. Shaibu Husseini, the Executive Director/CEO of the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), marks a pivotal moment in the country's film industry while speaking at a National Stakeholders Engagement on Smoke-Free Nollywood held in Enugu on Wednesday.

"Today, I'm delighted to announce to you that the Minister of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, Hannatu Musawa, pursuant to section 65 of the NFVCB Act 2004 has approved the regulation.

"The minister has approved the Prohibition of Money Ritual, Ritual Killing, Tobacco, Tobacco Products, Nicotine Product Promotion and Glamorization display in Movies, Musical Videos and Skits Regulations 2024.

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The new regulation, that has included the prohibition of Smoking scenes, aims to sanitize the content produced and consumed by the Nigerian audience. The NFVCB, under Dr. Husseini's leadership has expressed concerns about the potential impact such portrayals can have on the audience, especially the youth, who form a significant portion of the movie-watching demographic.

"We have also forwarded the approved copy to the Federal Ministry of Justice for Gazette," he said.

The move is not just about censorship but about encouraging filmmakers to explore alternative narratives and storytelling methods that promote positive values. The Nigerian film industry, popularly known as Nollywood, is one of the largest in the world and has a profound influence on the cultural and social fabric of the nation. By implementing these regulations, the NFVCB hopes to foster a more responsible and ethical filmmaking environment.

This decision has been met with various reactions from different stakeholders within the industry. While some applaud the government's initiative to curb negative influences, others are concerned about the implications for creative freedom. The NFVCB has assured that the regulations are not meant to stifle creativity but to guide it towards more constructive and beneficial paths.

The prohibition is part of a broader initiative to engage various stakeholders, including movie producers, directors, actors, and guilds, in a dialogue about the future of Nollywood and its role in society. The NFVCB has planned detailed enlightenment programs to educate these stakeholders about the dangers and responsibilities associated with film content.

As the regulation takes effect, it will be interesting to observe how Nollywood adapts and evolves. The industry has always been known for its dynamic storytelling and ability to address societal issues. With this new directive, filmmakers have the opportunity to lead the way in creating content that not only entertains but also educates and inspires positive change.

The Federal Government's approval of this prohibition reflects a commitment to the cultural integrity and moral compass of the nation. It is a call to action for the Nigerian film industry to harness its power and influence for the greater good, paving the way for a new era of Nollywood that champions virtue over vice.

NAN has reports that it is the duty of the Board to register all films and Videos Outlets across the country, and to keep a register of such registered outlets among other functions.

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