In a meeting with the industrial players of the movie industry and the press last week, the Deputy Minister for Information, Baba Jamal criticized the quality and content of movies produced by film makers in the country, and condemned explicit sexual theory in most of our movies which he said was killing the industry and corrupting our society slowly. But a good number of the film producers present disputed that fact and raised many concerns in relation to the Minister’s cry.
During the meeting, most of the producers called for a proper rating and expurgate by the censorship board, while others were of the view that they always looked at the market trend before they produced their films thus if the demand on sex scenes is on the high side, they respond as such.
Socrate Sarfo, the PRO of the Film producers Association of Ghana (FIPAG) and a film producer who didn’t want to talk initially later saw the need and added his voice and said, he sees the conference as a talk shop and continued that it was not the first time the Information Ministry is meeting the stake holders of the film industry and this time around they (the film producers) call the conference a talk shop. “Initially, majority of us decided to boycott the conference because anytime we have a conference like this, we are giving some tea to drink and the media will also cover for records that the minister met with the stakeholders and that ends the whole show ” he lamented.
He continued that, with over 23 years in the movie industry, he can say with confidence that Hon Agyenim Boateng is the only effective leader he has ever seen and the most painful thing is that, they were not informed of his leaving the Ministry and challenged the Minister to prove his efficiency by doing something positive to affect the industry by the end of next month.
Hon. Baba Jamal reacting to what Socrates Sarfo said made it known that, he does not have all the solutions to their (the producers) problems, hence the reason for inviting them to discuss the way forward of the industry. So if Socrates Sarfo is demanding to see something positive by next month, then the majority of it lies on the Film Producers Association of Ghana. Baba Jamal also added that everybody must be a game keeper, because they have the responsibility to protect the society, when given the responsibility to do so.
Talking about nudity in our movies, which the producers claim is the strategy they use in selling their movies, the Minister stated that, “somebody is selling cocaine because people want to buy. But we all know that this cocaine will be making somebody mad at another country somewhere, do we say we should allow people to sell cocaine because it is on high demand” he questioned the producers.
He encouraged the industrial players and said “the players in the film industry are like politicians, you may insult them, say whatever you want about them, but they will keep ruling the country. Their obligation is rather to be responsible for whatever they do” he added.
The deputy minister told the gathering that there has not been an effective Minister for the past 23 years as Socrates said because the nature of Ghanaian politics is affecting the industry but the only way out is for the producers to help establish a system that will allow somebody to continue with the works and policies of his/her predecessor when they leave power.