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Federal Government bashed for blocking film production

18 April 2013, 15:10

Abuja - The recent decision by the federal government to ban the exhibition and distribution of a documentary film detailing corruption corruption in the state's management of oil wealth has angered a leading media rights group.

Last week, the federal government-run National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) called the contents of the 30-minute film, "Fuelling Poverty", by Ishaya Bako.

The board claimed the production was "highly provocative and likely to incite or encourage public disorder and undermine national security."

The Committee to Project Journalists (CPJ) Africa Advocacy Coordinator, Mohamed Keita, slammed the Nigerian government move saying it suppressed efforts to expose corruption and human rights violation.

"Instead of banning the documentary 'Fuelling Poverty,' authorities should look into the important questions it raises about corruption and impunity in the country's oil sector and at the highest levels of government," said Keita.

He urged Nigeria's National Film and Video Censors Board to overturn this censorship order.

Bako, in partnership with the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA), premiered the documentary last November.

It was screened at the 20th New York African Film Festival this month and has been nominated for Best Documentary at the upcoming African Movie Awards.

Since the ban, activists have been assertively sharing the film on social media, according to news reports and garnering more than 43,000 views on YouTube.

NFVCB has censored 4 600 films between 1994 and 2005.

- CAJ News


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