Daily Trust (Abuja)

Nigeria: Czech 'New Wave Film Festival' Ends in Jos

The maiden edition of the Czech New Wave Film Festival organized by the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC) and the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Nigeria has ended in Jos, Plateau State, with a call for sustainable film training and capacity building for the Nigerian motion picture industry. The National Film Institute (NFI), Jos, hosted the two-day event

The December 5th to 6th event brought together stakeholders, including students to foster a stronger cultural bi-lateral relations between Nigeria and the Czech Republic, using film and capacity sector as the medium.

Mr. Afolabi Adesanya, Nigerian Film Corporation's Managing Director, expressed delight at the sustained chain of collaborative film festival weeks between the NFC/NFI and foreign embassies like China, Egypt, the United States of America, Ukraine, France, Spain, amongst others in Nigeria.

"Film enthusiasts, especially students, have benefitted immensely from past film festivals. The embassies have provided a veritable platform for previewing and understanding the cultural, social and economic potentials of the partnering countries, conveyed through films," he said.

The outing Managing Director said the event was geared to provide further opportunities for film students to understand and appreciate films from other climes, and deploy the experiences acquired to enhance their knowledge and skills. "Film making is where you recycle ideas by learning from notable productions and attributes of personalities involved from other film cultures, to improve creative depth and presentations," Mr. Adesanya said.

The Commissioner for Culture & Tourism, Plateau State, Hon. Sylvanus Dangtoe, said the state were indeed happy that film activities in Plateau State were being sustained especially through film festival weeks with foreign nations. This, he said, would continue to boost the tourism potentials of the State, adding that the NFC/NFI would continue to enjoy the support and assistance of the state government .

Earlier, the Ambassador of Czech Republic, Mr. Jaroslav Siro represented by the Embassy's Third Desk Secretary and Cultural/ Press Officer, Eliska Kolarova, thanked the NFC for collaborating to host the festival. She said "films screened were selected from among the best of Czechs' classic movies originally intended for the Czech's audience, but had to be subtitled in English for easy understanding."

Kolarova said "Nigeria occupies an enviable position in the comity of film producing nations and as such collaborative efforts and partnerships must be sustained."

Meanwhile, Professor Hayward Mafuyai, Vice Chancellor, University of Jos has pledged that the university would sustain its support and assistance to the National Film Institute, Jos, saying that both institutions stand to gain much in the face of ongoing efforts to strengthen the academic programmes of the university through international and foreign partnerships.

Professor Mafusayi who disclosed this when he received visiting Mr. Afolabi Adesanya, Managing Director, Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC) in his office, said the university is upgrading its academic programmes by reviewing existing programmes, training and retraining of her academic staff, to put it on the path of sustainable growth.

All affiliating institutions to the University of Jos, he said, would benefit from the comprehensive upgrade, including the NFI, in academic staff development from masters to doctorate degrees, and in special researches; domestic and foreign.

Speaking earlier, Mr. Adesanya said the NFI's affiliation to the University was not only desirable, but appropriate, adding that NFI's degree programme in Film Arts could not have been sustained without the support of Unijos and approval by the National Universities Commission (NUC). "NFI has provided the depth in training for film studies in Nigeria, recently benefitting from the World Bank STEP-B project," Adesanya said.

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