The Nigerian movie industry, popularly known as Nollywood, is set to promote the Agenda 2063 of the African Union, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.
Emeka Rollas, National President of Actors Guild of Nigeria stated this during a stakeholders interactive session with its members and the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat on Saturday in Abuja.
The AU Agenda 2063 is a strategic framework for the socio-economic transformation of the continent over the next 50 years.
It builds on, and seeks to accelerate the implementation of past and existing continental initiatives for growth and sustainable development.
According to the AGN president, Nollywood films and stars are widely accepted across Africa and beyond, adding they are veritable tools that should be used to popularise the Agenda 2063.
He said: “Nollywood is ready for African Union and the Agenda 2063, so let the dialogue begins and the actions follow.
“I have no iota of doubt that through our movies, our TV series, plus our icons and stars as Ambassadors AU policies and programmes will be well popularised.
“The AU, through Nollywood will certainly be penetrating the boundaries that separate our various countries, to speak to the soul of its people, entertaining, and yet disseminating its messages.”
Rollas noted that the Nigerian motion picture industry was a major employer of labour, and was also a platform where youths discover and realize their talents.
He added that Nollywood was a ready vehicle to realising the AU vision of building Africa with a strong cultural identity, common heritage, values and ethics.
He emphasised that the industry players were ready for partnership with the AU towards popularising the Agenda 2063.
He said: “Nollywood here in Nigeria, directly and indirectly employs over two million young people in acting, production, digital marketing, distribution, cable stations and so on.
“Together with the African Union, we can begin to transform Africa, to realise its huge potential and make every African proud of this awesome continent.
“With such collaboration, AU and Nollywood, and indeed the entire Africa creative industry will open new frontiers in the economy of Africa in terms of job creation, youth engagement and empowerment.
“This I believe is well captured in the African Union Vision 2063.”
In his remark, the AUC chairperson, Mahamat commended the actors and filmmakers for their genuine interest to identify with the AU Agenda 2063.
He said that Nollywood was playing a leading role in the continent’s motion picture industry.
He therefore expressed willingness that the AUC was ready for a partnership with the Nollwood stakeholders towards popularising AU programmes.
Mahamat said: “The Nollywood brand is a tool that should be used to popularised African agenda because it is well known all over Africa and beyond.
“There is no doubt that the African youths can realize their potentials within the continent and make global impact because Nollywood has proved it.
“It is time for us to take advantage of what Nollywood has to offer Africa.”
NAN reports that the AUC Chairperson who was in the country for a working visit, was accompany to the interactive session by some of his top officials.
His entourage included: Prof. Sarah Anyang-Agbor, the AUC Commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology and Ebba Kalondo, Spokeperson to the Chairperson and Ambassador Hadiza Mustapha, Advisor Peace, Security and Governance to the Chairperson.
Some top Nollywood stars present at the meeting included: Ejike Asiegbu, Patience Ozokwor, Francis Duru and Bruno Iwuoha.
Others included: Agility Onwurah, Alvin Ahmed and other officials of the Actors Guild.
The event was climaxed with traditional dance by a Nigerian troupe, as well as performances by other artistes.