the Eko Hotels to meet President GEJ. The crux of the meeting was for
him to jaw jaw with the entertainment industry to thank them for their
support and to ask that they say what and how the industry can be helped
to achieve its goals in the different sectors that formed the whole
funding was the number one problem. All other speakers were to toe the
same line. I got the chance to speak and I told Mr President that, if he
gives 3 BILLION NAIRA to each sector of entertainment, we will still be
broke, unless the scourge of Piracy is sorted. I was shouted down by
some stakeholders and people who I expected to know the truth. They even
asked if I am a movie maker.
got the microphone after 2 more Egbons objected to my position. Amaka
Igwe, seconded my motion, and argued that if the money is released,
received and used, how will pirates be tackled? Because all the pirate
needs is one copy! And she said, rather than give the industry such
funds, the environment should be provided for us to be creative and sell
the products of our creativity. Piracy is our doom she added.
pirates are even more emboldened. You may want to ask AY how his “30
Days In Atlanta” is making some good money for some pirates. I saw one
of the “Egbons” who told me to keep quiet that night, and I asked him
how his film was doing, and he said, “Awon Pirates ti ba oja JE.”
(Translation: I agree, I am a very stupid and myopic idiot). I further
asked him about the distribution network that he said they (movie
makers) knew how to handle, to beat the Pirates… “Awon people yen baaaad
GAN” (translation: I’m shortsighted and dumb).
pirates can keep selling DVDs on the street, we will keep struggling! If
our artistes put the kind of energy we put in backing politicians, to
push for our piracy laws, the era of artistes getting Platinum, Diamond,
Gold discs for records sold will return. Until then, except for a few,
we toil in vain!