By Lari Williams
Nigeria’s entertainment industry should be the arrow head for rebranding the nation. Militarizing the nation’s youth should be the sanitizing factor. Every graduate from our tertiary institutions should undergo mandatory military training in the Army, the Navy, the Air Force or the Police.
Nigerian youths performing at the 2017 African Arts & Crafts Expo, Abuja
It is unfortunate that the moral fiber of the youth of this nation has been contaminated by bad example displayed by the generation of Nigerians that grew into the jamboree of independence and the oil boom in the 60’s and 70’s respectively. The subsequent rot of squander-mania led to social injustice and moral decadence. Nigerians, at home and in the Diaspora, are concerned about corruption in the country. Recently, Reverend Father Evaristus Eshiowu, a Nigerian resident in America, titled his book Integrity Campaign, Antidote to Corruption. Yet, there is great joy in the reality that the tendency towards corruption can be reversed by reorientation to legitimate approach to the pursuit of wealth and achievement.
The duty of the entertainment industry in rebranding the nation would help to inculcate moral, cultural, and ethical virtues into the populace through high quality writing of scripts for film, drama, music, satire and comedy. These creative works will function in deliberate and constructive patterns that reflect and demonstrate the goodies of our rich and glorious culture. The foundation of discipline would have been laid during the compulsory one year military training.
A robust character that recognizes and embraces the virtues of hard work and a positive imagination with delight is the product of a fundamentally disciplined mind. In the life to the youths and Nigerians at large, if the inclination towards dishonest behaviour in the immoral bid to acquire sudden wealth is a reflection of the negative influence of the bad examples of the past, exposure to the military discipline would curtail this unfortunate rot and, in the process, reestablish our moral values in honesty and truth.
By the same token, military training will help reduce manpower waste which has also been detrimental to the nation’s economy. Half truth is a whole lie. The nation’s ruler-ship and leadership need to apply the whole truth to make new footprints for future glory, hence the CHANGE.
One excellent example of habitual indiscipline is the culture of ignoring red lights when driving on our roads. Whether it is at night or in daytime, this behaviour is tantamount to gross indiscipline and should be discouraged.
On the other hand, the government should help societal discipline by providing enough public conveniences like toilets and urinaries, especially along high streets like Ikorodu Road, Nnamdi Azikwe Street and Broad Street, also on bridges linking the Islands to the Mainland. Hooded gutters would help. This will make life easier for late night workers such as entertainers and the entertained.
Kudos to the Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON), for spearheading the proper organization of the music industry in Nigeria and shining a bright light of hope and glorious expectations to the Nigerian music industry. Let us hope that other segments of our entertainment industry would move in the same direction. This would help in the drive for a more lucrative entertainment industry.
No bird flies high with one bald wing. Therefore, “the stage” needs reawakening to give more solid foundation for Film and Television to thrive on. The stage is the bedrock of entertainment. Nigeria can borrow a leaf from America’s Broadway from whence came musicals, movies and over-flooded stage productions which metamorphosed from Broadway to off Broadway. Chief Tony Okorogi’s COSON move is a pointer to the growth potential of the entire entertainment industry. Kudos again to COSON.