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Gov. Akpabio promises to finance ‘Goodluck Jonathan Prize Award’, as GEJ hosts Nollywood stars
by Solomon Osadolo
Nigeria’s movie industry, Nollywood, got a boost this weekend as the federal government launched ‘Project Nollywood,’ a move to “fast track the stellar performance of the movie industry in Nigeria.”
In a dinner event which held at the State House, Marina, Lagos to mark the 20 years of Nollywood, various Nollywood stars were present as a pictorial book titled ‘Icons of Nollywood’ was unveiled.
At the event, the president also announced that the government was pumping in the sum of N3 billion into the industry. He said that this will be a grant to boost Nollywood in the quest for it to surpass the oil and gas industry as the highest revenue generator in the country.
In addition, the president directed the Nigeria Export-Import (NEXIM) Bank and Bank of Industry (BOI) to inject life into Nollywood through provisions of loans.
Also speaking at the event, the Akwa Ibom governor, Godswill Akpabio, who in recent days have become a key ally of the president, gave the relationship a further boost by announcing that he would finance a N50million ‘Goodluck Jonathan Prize’ award. He said the award would be shared by the best in the industry in acting, film making, directing and other categories.
No mention was made of politics during the event but observers would note that Nollywood was a key constituency for the president en route his 2011 victory. The power of that industry and its stars to mould and shape opinions due to its massive popularity cannot be over-emphasised.