Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, on Saturday disclosed that the Federal Government has taken steps to amend the Nigeria Broadcasting Code to discourage the production of Nigerian movies and music outside the shores of the country.

This announcement has since prompted reactions from Nigerian entertainers who are at the center of the ban.

Peter Okoye of PSquare took to twitter to condemn the new decision by the FG government. Peter stated that Nigerian entertainers play a huge rule in projecting a good image of Nigeria to the world while all the government does is to smear that image. He also said he’s ashamed to be called a Nigerian.

See his tweets below:

On the other hand, singer, Shakar El wrote an Open Letter to the minister where he raised some points as to why the ban should not be enforced.

He wrote:

“Dear Honourable Minister,

“I totally understand your patriotic Concerns about Nigerian Entertainers going outside Nigeria to Produce movies, songs and videos.

“First of all you need to be informed that most times, entertainers shoot outside Nigeria because of the concept of that particular project and in some cases due to lack of Logistics to produce such movie or song in Nigeria.

“Honourable, only a handful of Nigerian entertainers/production companies can actually afford to produce their project outside the shores of Nigeria.

“Many of us can’t even afford to produce in Nigeria Talk less of going abroad considering the high cost of Flights, Hotels, Forex and the state of Nigerian Economy.

“In the few cases where some artists can afford to produce abroad then it is not much of a problem since they will be using their own money for such expenses and not at the expense of Tax payers.

“Honourable, I wish you can use your office to push against medical tourism by Nigerian Public office holders which appears to be a major problem to our economy and Development as a country than Entertainment tourism/Exchange.

“If Nigerian Public [office] holders continue to [go] seeking medical care outside Nigeria, it affects our economy negatively and it reduces the investment in our health care.

“Unlike Entertainment, Health is Wealth, only a healthy person will afford to go to work or travel abroad for a production.

“Recently a lot of our Nigerian entertainers have died in Nigerian hospitals due to lack of medical infrastructure in Nigeria since they can’t afford medical treatment in other countries. Some are suffering due to lack of welfare and increase in piracy.

Honourable with your significant office, you can be the voice that will reduce piracy to the lowest level and introduce a new code against pirates so that entertainers will be able to reap the fruit of their labour and pay their due tax to the government so that the Economy of our great country Nigeria will thrive.

“Honourable Minister I pray you will take this few points of mine seriously as we work towards a Better Nigeria for Everyone.

“God bless Nigeria!”

Author: Yemi Olarinre