The Federal House of Representatives on Thursday unanimously adopted a motion by a member representing Iseyin/Itesiwaju/Kajola/Iwajowa federal constituency, Honourable Shina Peller, on the urgent need for the federal government to strengthen the country’s creative industry.
Presenting the motion on the floor of the House, Honourable Peller observed that the current economic values of the Nigerian creative industry provides a veritable incremental source of employment, revenue and growth necessary for the diversification of the country’s economy from dependency on oil revenues.
Also, quoting the United Nation’s report (2011), the Oke Ogun-born federal legislator argued that globally, the creative industry has become a driver of employment, economic growth, innovation and social cohesion.
In the same vein, Honourable Peller observed that according to the available data, Nigeria’s film sector (Nollywood) is one of the most lucrative and active creative industries which contributes about 2% to the country’s GDP generating annual revenue of two hundred and eight (208) billion naira.
Similarly, Honourable argued that the film industry alone offers legitimate employment to over one million people making the sector the second largest employer after agriculture, adding that there is need to implement policies that will enhance the capacity of such an industry.
Furthermore, Honourable Peller stressed that Nigerian music sector is another creative industry which must be strengthened to aid the country’s economic growth. He added that Nigerian music industry produces over 550 albums annually.
He listed the late Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu (Burna Boy), David Adedeji Adeleke (Davido) and others as major actors in the Nigerian music industry who made and are making the country proud globally with their record-breaking feats.
The motion read in part:
“At the global level, the late Afrobeat creator, Fela Anikulapo-kuti is perhaps the most iconic musician to have come out of Nigeria until recently when Damini Ebunolowa Ogulu(Burna Boy) a Nigerian singer and song writer won best international Act at the 2019 BET Awards and was also nominated for the best world music Album at 62nd Annual Grammy Awards. He also won Best International act at the 2021 BET Awards.
“Recently, top Nigerian Artist Davido’s album titled ‘Timeless’ has featured over 10 million user-generated playlists on Spotify. Also the album had over 12 million streams in 24 hours, this was the first time an album would achieve such a feat.”
However, Honourable Peller noted with regret that in spite of its great economic value, Nigerian creative industry is challenged by lack of coherent policies that establish clear objective and strategies for the industry to thrive.
He added that Nigerian creative industry needs support structures in the areas of skills and capacity development, access to finance, infrastructure, intellectual property protection, development of creative clusters and international strategy among others.
Honourable Peller therefore prayed that the House urges the Federal Government of Nigeria to as a matter of urgency implement policies that will enhance the capacity of the country’s creative industries as major revenue earners.
Secondly, he prayed that the House urges the Minister of Information and Culture as a matter of priority to create and execute policies to strengthen the creative industries.
Thirdly, he prayed that the House implores the federal government to do more in the area of royalty control and piracy.
Fourthly, he prayed that the Federal Government and National Assembly should ensure the increase in the budgetary allocation of the Ministry of Information and Culture in the 2024 Appropriation Act for optimal performance.
Lastly, Honourable Peller prayed that the Ministry of Information and Culture should organise a creative industry summit whereby the challenges and prospects of it industry can be brought to the forefront.
The House discussed the motion at length. unanimously applauded it, granted all the prayers and passed it to the relevant committees for further legislative actions.