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NCAC, Stakeholders Looking Beyond COVID-19 Chart Way Forward For Creative Industry

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Joel Ajayi

At a time of huge uncertainty across all sectors, many are trying to understand the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on the workforce. In the creative industry, there is a particular ambition to understand what this looks like, with important features of the sector like public venues, Travel, Arts and Crafts, Museum and micro-businesses, particularly threatened by the pandemic.

While other sectors are battling on how to overcome the negative impact of this pandemic COVID-19, NCAC is already thinking outside the box by galvanizing all the stakeholders  across the globe, strategizing on how the creative industry can flourish more after the pandemic.

The roadmap for setting a proper agenda and the way forward for creative industry in the country was undertaken at the inaugural Zoom conference meeting put in place by the National Council For Arts and Culture (NCAC) and various stakeholders, on Thursday, where every stakeholders home and abroad actively participated .

In their numbers, over 100 stakeholders are preparing for life after COVID- 19 that has dealt a major blow to all sectors in the world.

The meeting which provided to all stakeholders in the creative sector opportunity to chart the way forward for the sector, especially at this time of paralized country’s economy.

Participants include all stakeholders in the sector; the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (NANTA) the Federation of Tourism Association of Nigeria (FTAN), NTDC, Actors, Actresses, media,  visual Artist,  National Art and Gallery, National Commission for Museum and Monument, Bangladesh Ambassador and all other captains of the industry actually made contributions that will soon forge the creative industry forward in the country.

The Convener, and Director- General  of the NCAC , Otunba Olusegun Runsewe, stated that,  the interest and the objectives of the meeting is to move creative industry forward and see how to inject more lives to the sector in Nigeria.

He said, creative industry is the greatest employer of labour in the country and has greatly been affected by the COVID-19.

According to him, COVID-19 has come, and damage has been done but how do we get out of it?

“The whole world is on zero tourism, its now left for us, to see how to come together and fix our own creative industry to the advantage of every Nigerians.

“One of the reasons for the Zoom conference meeting is to see how to make  creative industry relevant, we must tell the world that we are doing something.

“There is need for creativity industry to think outside the box and we are ready to lift the face of creative industry in Nigeria.

“This programme is very key,  the inaugural zoom conference meeting is to set agenda for Creative sector and the way forward.”

He, However lamented  the non-recognition of tourism and culture sector on the part of the government saying, for the creative industry to grow, the leadership of the country must believe in culture by giving the needed attention.

Otunba Runsewe,  therefore disclosed that, the brainstorming meeting is a continuous process that will be taking place every Saturday of the week, where different guest speakers will be present to discuss roadmap that will bring growth and development in the creative sector.

While Speaking the guest speaker, Mr Isreal Eboh, eloquently answered all the questions raised by all participants, assuring that better days are ahead of creative industry in Nigeria, if all hands are on deck.

He said :”Federal government should see creative industry as an alternative contributor to the Nigeria’s GDP, by creating  Ministry of Culture, where policy, decision and budget can be drawn by culture professionals.

“We should stop decieving ourselves, in Nigeria, culture is not given the needed attention, that is why our cultures are not recognized.”

Making his contribution, A visual Artist, Idowu Sonaya lauded an idea of having database for all people involved in the sector, saying that, creative sector is capable of turning things around for the conntry, if palliative is given to sustain personnel involves.

“Let CBN make incentives available to the creative industry, let them remove collateral that remains an obstacle in assessing such incentives; the gallery owners, the arts and all other units need support to strive.

He equally suggested that the awareness and international support to market  products, and avenue for proper broadcast of all the products should be put in place.

As for Fred Amata, he expressed that creative industry can make Nigeria a better place, if all stakeholders come together as one, he therefore sought for the support of everyone to ensure the sector take its place in the country.

Also, Mr Rockson Igelige, stated that physical display or gathering of people in spot might be difficult for now, saying that, there is need to be technology-driven, by ensuring the proper market, our product online. “It’s online that is reigning now, and we must begin to prepare our minds towards it.” He hinted.

Mr Igegile equally said that there is need for domestication of the creative industry law to reduce infringement and copyright; “We need to domesticate some of our laws, if we don’t do that, it will amount to copyright of our works.”

Some stakeholders as well, agreed that merging of agencies in the culture sector cannot proffer solution to the sector, but rather, the readiness of all stakeholders to take up new challenges remain the only antidote to the sector’s challenge in the country.

It would be recalled that, NCAC under the leadership of Otunba Runsewe have distributed countless of face masks, sanitizers to various media houses, Nigeria Police and rest of Nigerians as a way of showing support to many in the counry during the pandemic COVID-19 in the country.

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Creative Industry

THE AROJAH STUDENTS PLAYWRITING PRIZE (TASPP) 2021

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INTRODUCTION:

It was a modest begining last year for the maiden edition of The Arojah Students Playwriting Prize with Ọjọ́ Miracle Joshua of Obafemi Awolowo University emerging as the pioneer winner of the N100,000 prize money with his play, Justice:A Mirage?

Submissions for the 2021 edition of the competition is open from between March 1st and May 31st, 2021

WHO CAN PARTICIPATE?

The competition is open to all playwrights of Nigerian heritage who are undergraduates across tertiary institutions – Universities, Polytechnics and Colleges around the world.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

The Submission Guidelines for TASPP 2021 are as follows;

i.       All entries must be submitted within the stipulated deadline. Failure to meet all stated conditions will lead to outright disqualification.

ii.      Entries must be full length ONE-ACT PLAYS.

 iii .   Entries must be an adaptation/transposition of John Pepper Clark’s THE CASUALTIES. The competition is in honour of the Nigerian literary icon.

 iv . Entries can be in any form of the playwright’s choice – comedy, parody, monologue, tragedy etc.

 v . Any play previously performed, published or currently in consideration for other competitions is not qualified to enter for this competition.

 vii .  Submission must be in word document sent as an attachment with the subject column reading: TASPP 2021

 viii . Complete contact information, including full contact address, email(s), phone number(s) social media handles and a brief (50 word) bio of participating student playwright should accompany each submission, on a separate sheet.

ix.     All submissions should be sent to TASPP@AROJAHTHEATRE.COM on or before 31 May 2021.

 x . Multiple entries by the same playwright would not be allowed.

Also note that:

 i. A panel of judges for this competition would be announced in due course.

ii.      The selection of the judges, approved by the Management and Board of Patrons of Arojah Royal Theatre, shall be final.

iii.     A longlist of ten (10) plays would be announced in July 2021.

iv.     Announcement of winners and award ceremony will hold in September/October 2021

THE PRIZES

The winner will clinch a monetary prize of N150,000, certificate and a medal of honour while the two runners up get N50,000 consolation prizes each with certificates.

The three winning plays will be published in an anthology of new plays.

SIGNED:

Paul Liam

Prize Administrator

+234 703 019 5010

Om’Oba Jerry Adesewo

Artistic Director

Arojah Royal Theatre

+234 805 277 1123

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