In this interview with SOLOMON NDA-ISAIAH, the director-general of Nigerian films and video censors board, Mr. Emeka Mba relives the board’s frustrating experiences tackling piracy and how the Ghanian film industry is frustrating censorship of films in Nigeria. Excepts
Recently there has been an increase in movies that promote obscenity and pornography, is it that the board has too many movies to screen or that the borders of what is good for public family consumption is blurred?
All of the above really we are faced with the challenge of monitoring and enforcing all these things, most of these movies come from Ghana as you know we don’t censor script we are not told when a movie is going to be done, often time when they do it and bring it here and we reject it because they had already spent money in doing it they will go and release it in Ghana.
Ghana has different kind of values, there is a way they look at some of these things which is more flexible obviously because we live in this connected digital world the films will still find its way into this environment. By the time they are here that is when we start fighting back, because they are already here, we do seize and destroy, even with that, people keep complaining that why are we seizing and destroying these films, when you remind them about the effects of the films they will say “I am over 18”.
I am old enough to watch any movie I want to, we face these issues all the time because people buy them, who are the people that buy them, Nigerians people like you and I who often will say I want to exercise my own right to watch whatever I want to watch, the only challenge we have is that we ensure that those films are not sold in or around schools and anywhere were children can have access to them.
Nigeria is a huge country how many are we in the sensory board that we are going to go around the whole country let alone Abuja we can’t effectively do it. We can’t be every day in Masaka, Maraba, Kubwa, Bwari or Lughe no one would have that kind of resources and powers to be able to do such things but it’s important if the people within the society the Churches, the Mosques,fathers and mothers everyone has a role to play in telling the truth about the dangers of pornography.