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The annual All Africa Music Awards ( AFRIMA ) which Nigeria has hosted since its inception in 2014, is helping to transform the nation’s creative Indu...

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The annual All Africa Music Awards ( AFRIMA ) which Nigeria has hosted since its inception in 2014, is helping to transform the nation’s creative Industry to creative economy.

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed said this in an interview with the Newsmen on the 4th All African Music Awards (AFRIMA) 2017 in Lagos.

Mohammed who was the guest of honour at the event said that securing the hosting right for the Pan Africa Music Awards initiative had been beneficial to the nation’s creative industry.

On the significance of the AFRIMA to Nigeria’s economy and entertainment industry, Mohammed said that in order to encourage the entertainment industry, government would partner with private investors to invest more in the entertainment facilities.

“The entertainment industry is overwhelming in the world right now and in Nigeria, we need to do more in providing right atmosphere which is infrastructural facilities for the industry.

“We are not just talking about power sector or water, we are talking about entertainment. We need to be on purpose, build halls that will encourage our artists and musicians.

“We are talking about domestic tourism, domestic market where we can really expose our artists, so this will not only be about government but also private sector to provide the infrastructure.

“On the part of government, we will encourage more private sector and philanthropists all over the world because it is not something we leave to government alone,’’ he said.

Mohammed said that hosting of event such as AFRIMA was another way of generating income for the government because of the tourism factor which could bring more earnings.

“Nigeria is having this event now, AFRIMA 2017, and we are talking about bringing another way of improving our economy through other income.

“We must not forget that Nigeria hosted same award last year and we have to make another positive request for this year so that it can remain in Nigeria.

“We thank the African Union (AU) for this opportunity for accepting Nigeria, to host it again this year. We are also grateful to Lagos State government for the support of this award.

“The positive thing about the award is that we have been able to move the music industry from the back corner to the front burner,’’ he said.

Mohammed said that the concentration would not be placed only on agriculture or oil and gas, but also on creative industry as a means of diversifying the economy.

“This means when we are talking about economy, we are not just talking about agriculture, solid mineral or construction but actually more in the creative industry.

“Nigeria already has a very high advantage, and we can see that recently with the awards Nigerian are getting in the industry and most recent of the Wizkid award in U.K.

“This shows the kind of influence we can have in the creative industry which can be positive to our economy,’’ he said.

“What we have seeing tonight is not just entertainment but how the creative industry is transforming into creative economy.

“You can see the huge economic potential that can come out of this endeavour.

“We have the entire world, not just the Africa here today, and more importantly is that it is being beam live all over the world.

“You can see what the government is doing to ensure the creative industry becomes creative economy,’’ he said.

The Awards is designed to promote the distinct rich African music worldwide, by propelling African music to glorious pinnacles beyond the borders of the continent.

Nigeria won the rights above 13 other countries to host the biggest music event in Africa for three consecutive years from 2014 to 2016.

The 2017 edition which held over the weekend was anchored by Damala Badara better known as Akon, an American-born Senegalese singer, songwriter, businessman, record producer and actor.

The event which witnessed host of African stars saw Nigerian acts – Wizkid, Simi, M.I, Tiwa Savage, Ycee, Orezi, 2Baba- all got awards

Special artiste was Wizkid who took home three major Awards of the night – Song of the Year, Artist of the Year & Best West African Act ( Male ).

Africa Music Legend Awards won by Salif Keita, Afro-pop singer and songwriter from Mali was presented by the Minister

source: Thenation

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