Imo State Governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha has charged the youths of his state to take the advantage of the booming film industry in Nigeria and across Africa and make successful career out of it.
The governor made the call on Wednesday in Owerri when he paid an unscheduled visit to the opening session of a 3-week intensive training for young people in the state for various career opportunities in the film industry organised by the Africa Film Academy.
‘’The film industry has become the biggest cultural export out of Nigeria to the rest of the world and I know how popular Nollywood films are across the world. The industry has become a huge one and a money spinner for those who are serious and ready to make it. We are supporting this initiative as part of our youth empowerment programmes. As a government, we want to have army of Imo young people who will be proud and successful all field of human endeavours. Imo State has the most brilliant and talented people in Nigeria. I want you to walk around and be proud and raise your shoulders high. This training is to introduce you to the careers you can pursue in the movie industry.
“We are ready to invest in infrastructure that will promote the industry in the state, a film village, cinema and others. We want to develop our own talent and future stars. I want to implore you to take full advantage of this training and be disciplined,’’ the Governor said.
Earlier, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Uche Ugwumba harped on discipline as the bedrock of success in life to the over 100 youths participating in the training.
“You cannot achieve anything in life without discipline. I want you to take this training seriously and after this you can take your interest to higher level. The state government decided to pay for this training for each and every one of you because we believe in the potentials that exist in entertainment and movie industry for job creation and career advancement.’’
In her welcome address, the founder of AFA, Ms. Peace Anyiam-Osigwe while thanking the state for investing in the future of the youths also implored the young people to take full advantage of the training adding that some of the youths that have participated in earlier trainings in Nigeria, Malawi, Gambia, Kenya among others have gone ahead to became successful professionals in various aspect of film making.
“Some of the young people that have participated in this type of training we have organised in the last 10 years have become very successful and making names for themselves. Now we are introducing you to different areas where you can specialise and within the next three weeks some of the best in the industry will come to take various classes as our resource persons and you will have the chance to meet and interact with them. After this investment by the state on you you will no longer ask the question what will my state do for me. It will now be what you will do for the state.’’
The opening session of the training programme was also attended by the wife of the governor, Mrs. Nneoma Nkechi Rochas Okorocha who came unannounced and other top government officials.
The training programme is supported by Diamond Bank and Africa Magic.