Isoko International Film Festival joins Nigeria’s festival train

Governors’ interventions as graveyards of festivals

Government must intensify efforts to alleviate hardship facing Nigerians, says ANA President, Akanbi

By Anote Ajeluorou

NIGERIA’S cultural landscape continues to experience some level of vibrancy in spite of the difficult economic situation the new government of Mr. Bola Tinubu unleashed on the largely pauperised citizenry. Unplanned fuel subsidy removal and floating of the foreign exchange (forex) further reduced the spending power of citizens to patronise cultural offerings. Nevertheless, the resilience of Nigerians still came to the fore to save what was already a disastrous second half of 2023. But the usual elastic spirit of accommodation of all manners of bad policies by successive governments, which paradoxically is the reason for the continued slide in national fortunes, came to the rescue of Nigerians, and the culture sector particularly.

Like previous years, iREPRESENT International Documentary Film Festival (iREP 2024) will be held in March. Organisers have put out a call notice for documentary filmmakers to send in their entries for the festival that has ‘Righting the Future’ as theme. It’s also the celebration edition of Wole Soyinka @90, also a filmmaker. The festival’s theme presupposes some wrongs in the past that need to be corrected, with Africa’s narrative strengths and stylistics being major concerns to watchers of the continent’s cinema space. With global streaming platforms asking for more stories from the continent, perhaps it’s time Africa’s storytellers rose up to the challenge and fill the vacuum ancient folk storytellers left for succeeding generations.

Sadly, the Creative Industry Commission Bill that some persons in the Muhammadu Buhari presidency were canvassing failed to see the light of day before the administration left office. It was the case of a good policy ill-conceived or ill-timed, as efforts to get the buy-in of stakeholders ended becoming a jamboree. Although the intention was good, it would have further compounded an already bloated government’s purse with yet another commission in an era where lean governments are being canvased. But it was no surprise that the federal government yet again failed to rise to the needs of the creative industry with the Creative Industry Commission.



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