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The Lagos State Film and Video Censors Board Harps on Content Registration to Boost Entertainment Industry

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The Lagos State Film and Video Censors Board had on August 11 unveiled a distribution, registration portal for entertainers called ‘Entertainment 9ja (e9ja).
The platform was unveiled in partnership with Performing Musicians Employers Association of Nigeria (PMAN) Lafrique Promedia and Zenith Bank.
During the event, the Lagos State Film and Video Censors Board issued a 30-day notice to practitioners to register their content, a move which generated uproar in the media.
According to Balogun, the decision is borne out of good intention for content owners.
He said the state government was not out to stiffle business but encourage entertainment owners.
“In the last few weeks, we have been in the media receiving bashes and praises for policies made. This has generated lots of interest and we felt that the public needs to be enlightened on content registration. Government is not out to stiffle but encourage businesses, especially of those in the creative industry and to ensure they get income for their talent and hard work. This is the driving force behind the platform, those against it are speaking from the point of ignorance and there is need to enlighten them on this project”.
Tee Mac Iseli, Chairman of the event, urged members of the public and practitioners to embrace the platform, noting that it was a blessing for the entertainment industry which had come to stay.
Iseli, a former PMAN president, shared his experience on how the initiative of a structured platform for entertainers started years ago but was frustrated by several obstacles.
“There is power in unity and this is to say that when the government is ready to help us, we should also help ourselves, which calls for cooperation. The entertainment security distribution platform exists, we need to revive it. Investors are ready, it is up to us to join forces and do the needful for the entertainment industry to grow. Look at me, I live comfortable because I get my royalties. Lagos is undoubtedly the entertainment hub of Africa; yes, we need the government support but we also need to put our house in order”.
Mr Rahman Raji, Chief Executive Officer, Lafrique Promedia, said the entertainment industry was also referred to as showbiz but the business aspect of it was being frustrated by some factors.
Raji said the state of California, U.S. thrives majorly on tax generated from intellectual property which Lagos could also replicate.
“The registration and distribution platform will set terms and conditions for exploration of indigenous contents. Nobody can tell the net worth of legendary Nigerian musicians or artistes but we all know that of Michael Jackson because of platforms like this. When you upload your content, we know who touches or use your content. We want to change the creative space. Now there is a break between you and your content, it is that break that we want to connect. If we all subscribe to this aggregated platform for the entertainers, they will realise that what they are making presently is just a trickle of what they should have made”.
Also, the PMAN National Legal Adviser, Mr Demola Odetunde, said the e9ja platform would put a stop to how creative Nigerians are being ripped off.
“This is a great turn around for the entertainment industry. It will give birth to a situation where entertainers will be requested to come for their money and not the other way. Only 10 per cent of creative content is in physical while 90 per cent is digital. It is from this digital that entertainers are being ripped off, because there is no framework. Our youths are creative but nobody to engage them. For instance, if Lagos State gives the creative industry money but there is no structure or platform through which it can be shared, what happens”.
He said with the advent of the content aggregator, funding and investment in the entertainment industry would be much easier.

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