Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Censoring Movies and Books in Kano

The following is text of a press briefing by the new, no-nonsense Executive Secretary of the Kano State Censorship Board, Malam Abubakar Rabo Abdulkarim (PICTURED HERE), on the additional guidelines for registration of film production companies, artistes, internet cafes and publishers/authors. It is the biggest censorship operation in Nigeria, couched in the spirit of the Kano State Government's Sharia programme under the state Governor, Malam Ibrahim Shekarau. Both the appointment of Malam Rabo and these new laws were inspired by the heated reaction of Hausawa to the sudden appearance of the Maryam Hiyana sex video. Read it, then we'll talk later!


The Board was established in the year 2001, under the State Censorship Board Law 2001. This law mandated the Board to oversee the activities of film making, cinemas, viewing centers, internet cafes and all literary works intended for sale, distribution or circulation in Kano State.

Sequel to the happenings in the film industry in the state and as well the current development in change of management of the state Censorship Board. More so, the establishment of the task force committee on sanitization of film industry in the state by his excellency the executive Governor, hitherto the following requirements are put in place for the registration of production companies, Artistes as well the censoring of films.

· Henceforth, no producer will go to location for activities without his script being approved by a recognised consultant and vetted by the Board.
· Production companies shall have a minimum of 2.5 million as working capital, confirmation could be obtained from Bank statement of account of the company.
· All members of the productions crew shall have a minimum qualification of Diploma or certificate in related field from a recognised institution.
· The Board would now censor both films on CDs and VHS Cassettes and all films marketed in the state.
· Artistes are now categorised into three, with respective minimum qualifications namely:
a) Artistes in training must have a minimum of primary School Certificate or its equivalent.
b) Median Artistes should ahave a minimum of Secondary School Certificate or its equivalent.
c) Star Artistes minimum of a Diploama, Degree or its equivalent.
· Henceforth the Board has cancelled singing and dancing of any kind in Hausa Film.
· The board is also revisiting the issue of marketing of film s in the state especially in the area of marketer-producer relationship.
· Kano State Association of Printers are to make sure that before they print aany book or poster meant for public use must have clearance from the board.

Th requirments for establishing a film production studio in the state approved by the Board include the following for the mean time:

· A set of computer
· Pinacle Editing system.
· Monitors
· AVC/VCR Player.
· Digital Camera (HD with accessories)
· Two sets of earphones/Microphone.
· Tripod/Crane
· Professional Lights
· Reel.


The state Censorship board re-iterates its position on all the measures being taken to sanitize the film in dustry and call on the entire stakeholders and the general public to support the task force set up by the state government for the purpose of sanity in the industry.
In this direction, the board hereby extends the period of the suspension imposed earlier. The suspension of all location activities is now from three months to six months effective from 13th August, 2007 toFebruary, 2008.
This policy would be vigourously monitored by the board to ensure stringent penalty imposition on defaulters.

The wishes to this medium is to call on all proprietors of film production companies that are registered with the board to come forward for the revalidation of their registration on or before 30th November, 2007 and must fulfill the following requirements as stipulated by the law.

· Certificate of incorporation.
· Tax clearance Certificate for 3 years.
· Letter of in troduction from the Local Government Council where the production company is situated.
· Production Company shall employ the service of a film/Video Production Consultant.
a) Such Consultant shall be qualified from a recognised film institute within Nigeria or abroad.
b) Scuh Consultant shall have a working experience of Not less thatn 4 years in the field of porduction.

· All film production companies shall furnish their studios with the necessary facilities in accordance with the broadacasting standards or its equivalent.
· Production companies shall ensure that all technical production crew are registered members of Motion Pictures Practitioners Association of NIgeria (MOPPAN)
· Production com pany should have a clear office identification address.
· Must have a permanent office secretary.
· Production companies must register with Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Co-operatives Kano.
· Production companies must ensure free office environment.
· The aforementioned guidelines are subject to review, depending on monitoring circumstances.

In line with the law that established this board as referred to above, and with particular reference to literary works, any person who produces a book, literary or dramatic work in the state and intends to publish such literary material, such person shall apply for Censorship license from the board as contained in the board's law.

It follows therefore that person who for the purpose of ditribution or public exhibiton, makes a product or has in his possession any one or more, a blasphemous, pornographic or obscene writings, drawings, prints, printings, printed matters, pictures, posters, emblems, photographs or any other object tending to corrupt public morals has committed an offence and will not be allowed to go free.
To this end the board wishes to the stakeholders is that their proucts must pass through this board before sale, exhibition oe even before going to production process to avoid wasteful expenses.

Therefore the following stakeholders are expected to register with the board in compliance with the requirements of the Censorship board Law 2001. They include:
· Authors
· Publishers
· Bookshops(Book sellers)
· Poster sellers
· Distributors
· Vendors

A person who therefore exhibits, publishes, sales or distributes in any manner whatso ever, a literary work without censorship board certificate shall be liable to wrath of the relevant provision of the law.

In conclusion, the board implors our stakeholders to view the content of this release with matured understanding and literary works.
Its our hope to restore public confidence in board forward quality and moral delivery.

Signed by
Executive Secretary
Kano State Censorship Board
Friday, 21 September 2007


Zahratique said...

Finally! What everybody has been suggesting to the movie industry has been backed up by law! What took them so long? Funny how it took the Hiyana scandal to drop the scales from their eyes. I wish them the best. Can't wait for the new geberation of Hausa movies~!

myabubakar said...

i dont support this draconian circular at all. it makes film making to be a closed market with no free entry and exit. have you noticed how they roped in other literary works into the foray? books, paintings, limericks and all. and who are they to dictate the qualification you must have before you produce a film? If they had that in the USA the warner brothers could not have emerged at all. Where are we heading to for godssakes?

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warrior king said...

Hello the censor for movies is ok cause that parents can see if there us people caked but i dont see that importance in books,
i have one book by the name of skin cancer symptoms book and is pretty good .

Anonymous said...

I hadn't heard about Kano State, but people there is like in jail if they state censoring everything, maybe they can get Generic Viagra

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