Federal Govt Bans Money Rituals, Others in Nollywood Movies

Dr. Shaibu Husseini, the Executive Director and CEO of the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB), announced that the Federal Government has approved a ban on depicting money rituals and the glamorization of vices in Nollywood movies.

This announcement was made at a National Stakeholder Engagement on Smoke-Free Nollywood held in Enugu on Wednesday. The NFVCB organized the event in collaboration with Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa (CAPPA).

The engagement brought together movie producers, directors, actors, and leaders of various guilds and associations from across the Nigerian film industry. Husseini emphasized the urgent need for bold and ambitious actions from parents, guardians, and stakeholders to address the industry’s current challenges.

“When my predecessor discussed with the former Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the need for legislation to reduce smoking in Nigerian movies, it became clear that money rituals should also be addressed,” Husseini stated.

“This regulation now includes ritual killings and the glamorization of other crimes to further sanitize the film industry.”

He announced that the Minister of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, Hannatu Musawa, has approved the regulation under Section 65 of the NFVCB Act 2004.

The new regulation, titled “Prohibition of Money Ritual, Ritual Killing, Tobacco, Tobacco Products, Nicotine Product Promotion and Glamorisation Display in Movies, Musical Videos and Skits” Regulations 2024, has been forwarded to the Federal Ministry of Justice for gazetting.

Husseini highlighted that the sensitization program aims to educate stakeholders about the dangers of depicting smoking in Nigerian movies. Besides health risks, he noted that glamorizing smoking negatively influences teens and young adults, who are the primary audience of Nigerian films.

The NFVCB plans to undertake extensive enlightenment programs in secondary schools, tertiary institutions, local communities, faith groups, and other institutions.

“The film industry plays a vital role in the entertainment and creative sector, and it is crucial that we prioritize its progress,” Husseini said. “The NFVCB supports smoke-free movies and seeks collaboration to create content that discourages smoking and promotes positive health messages.”

Following extensive engagements, the NFVCB, in collaboration with CAPPA, developed ‘subsidiary regulations’ to address smoking in movies, an aspect not explicitly covered by existing laws.

The NFVCB is committed to leading this initiative and has already begun implementing innovative strategies to fulfill its mandate. The Board is responsible for registering all film and video outlets across the country and maintaining a register of these outlets, among other functions.