The National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) on Sunday said it would clamp down on operators of unregistered video clubs and film viewing centers in the country.
Yunusa Abdullahi, Deputy Director and Head Corporate Affairs of the board, who said this in Abuja, stated that the clamp down would check the proliferation of unregistered video clubs and film viewing centers.
Abdullahi decried the increasing clandestine and nocturnal operations of the unregistered video clubs and film viewing houses.
“At times, some of them operate in the midnight; most of them operate illegally underground. And those are the ones that might show films that don’t have proper classification.
“Most of the clandestine, unregistered video viewing centers are illegal. What they do is illegal. The premises are illegal. Those are the ones we have issues with“, he said.
He stressed the need for intending operators of video exhibition centre to obtain approval from the board before establishing video clubs
He added that all video clubs and film viewing centers must meet the board`s criteria and qualification before such centers could be certified fit for film and video exhibition.
“Every exhibition center must be registered and must be licensed by the board for you to use the premises as a place to show films. There are criteria, there must be a proper structure, and it must have a sitting arrangement that does not hinder movement, in case of emergency.
“It must have fire escape routes; it must have fire extinguishers certified by Nigerian Fire Service. You must make sure that the lighting and the electrical equipments are not flammable“, he added.
He urged landlords and property owners to be wary of people who want to use their properties as viewing centers without formal approval from NFVCB.
Abdullahi said the NFVCB had carried out sensitisation programmes meant to educate landlords on leasing of property as video viewing center.
“We have done sensitisation workshop, we have a jingle that was running for quite a long time on radio, on this issue. If you give your house or property to someone for video exhibition, you must find out if he has license from NFVCB to exhibit firms on those properties. If he does not do that and we find out, we will seal the property“, he said.
He urged Nigerians in the film and video industry to always seek the advice of the NFVCB in carrying out their businesses.
According to him, stakeholders should engage in legitimate businesses instead of carrying out illegal and criminal activities that will ultimately attract sanction from the board.