Economy Entertainment

Censors Board seizes pirated films worth N200m, arrests 12 suspected pirates in 2017

The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) said it has seized uncensored, unclassified and pirated films worth about N200 million and also arrested 12 suspected pirates between March and December, 2017.

Mr Adedayo Thomas, the Executive Director of the board told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Wednesday.

Thomas said that the uncensored and unclassified works were seized between the period he assumed office as the new director of the board in March 2017.

He said that the uncensored items were confiscated in the following locations; Alaba International Market, Lagos, Kubwa, Banex Plaza, Wuse Market, Abuja, Benin City in Edo and Kaduna.

Thomas mentioned some of the works seized which include; DVD’s, CD’s, Production equipment and copies of several films from pirates.

“The board has scaled up its enforcement activities for the beginning of the year and we are intensifying efforts to make this evil business of pirates becomes unbearable for the people involved in it.

“The board will ensure total sanity in the industry and get ride off pirates in the industry and ensure the right owners of works enjoy the fruit of their hard labor, ” he said.

According to him, the market value of the seized items worth N200 million and the 12 suspected pirates who were arrested in Lagos and Abuja would be taking to court for judgment.

Thomas said that such action/step would served as deterrent and also prevent such illegal products from selling in the market at the expense of genuine ones.

He added that the action was part of the board’s enforcement operations in sanitising the Nigerian market of all illegal films.

He explained that the board had lined up nationwide raid against uncensored, unclassified and pirated films to ensure that such products were completely removed from the movie market.

He noted that the motion picture industry was not all about entertainment, but a big business that must be encouraged and protected to grow and bring profit to its investors.

Thomas said that creative industry was acclaimed to have contributed 1.4 per cent to Nigeria’s GDP, and we believe it can do more.

The executive director commended Bank of Industry (BOI) and Tonye Princewill, the executive producer of movie “79 for supporting the board with huge financier to discharged its mandate effectively.

” BOI and Tonye Princewill has been supportive. Supporting any drive that would enhance the commercial viability of the films and creative industry.

“Recently, BOI gives two powerful motorcycle to the board as part of machineries needed to carryout its work smoothly.

“I am indeed grateful and happy towards the gesture of BOI and I implore other stakeholders, individuals and philanthropists to support/partner with the board to be effective and efficient in discharging its mandates, ” he said.

Thomas said that BOI was a major financier of the creative sector, having invested heavily in the development of infrastructure and movie production in the country.