During my series of notes in the run up to Nigeria’s fiftieth independence anniversary, I expressed a desire to grow Nigeria’s entertainment industry into a world class one where we would see Nollywood movies being played in theatres and grossing hundreds of millions of Naira as well as have recording artists like Tuface Idibia, Dbanj, Banky W, P-Square, Timi Dakolo, Weird MC and co selling millions of records and generating wealth for themselves, their record companies, marketers and tour promoters and by so doing expanding the non oil sector of the economy.
Now in furtherance of this, I have just attended the 30th anniversary celebrations of the Silverbird group where I announced a Federal investment of 200 million dollars (about 30 billion naira) as a direct intervention lifeline for the exclusive purpose of supporting artist and developing our entertainment industry.
This may not be a lot of money, but it is a beginning. In seeking to diversify Nigeria’s revenue base, we must think outside the box and I am expectant that this fund will make Nigeria the African entertainment capital in the not too distant future.
It is my vision that every producer whether in the film or music industry, every actor or actress, fashion designers or artist must have opportunity to access cheap, long-term funding to grow their business: make movies, write hit songs, build malls, build cinemas, provide jobs and give hope to our people!GEJ