Senate Queries Wind Down Of NFVCB

Barr. Hannatu Musa Musawa, Minister of Arts, Culture and Creative Economy

The Senate has asked the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Senator George Akume and the Minister of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy to suspend the wind-down of the National Film and Video Censors Board forthwith.

The Senate has also called on the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and other relevant agencies of government to immediately commence the process of repealing the Act and establishing the National Film and Video Censors Board if need be.

Resolutions of the Senate yesterday were sequel to a motion titled, “Urgent Need to halt violation of the National Film and Video Censors Board Act. It was sponsored by Senator Onawo Ogoshi, PDP, Nasarawa South.

In his presentation, Senator Ogoshi said that “The Senate:
Notes that the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR directed the implementation of the Oronsaye report in February this year;

“Also notes that Oronsaye committee was set up by President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and the committee’s report was submitted in 2012. The report on public sector reforms revealed that there were 541 – statutory and non-statutory – federal government parastatals, commissions and agencies;

“Aware that the 800-page report recommended that 263 of the statutory agencies be slashed to 161; 38 agencies be scrapped; 52 be merged and 14 be reverted to departments in various ministries;

Also aware that media reports that the presidential committee under the chairmanship of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator George Akume has now commenced the implementation of the report;

“Further aware that a memo signed by the SGF, directed to the Honorable Minister of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, mandated the immediate dissolution of the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFCVB), which will now be integrated as a department within the ministry instead of operating as a separate federal agency;

“Concerned that the directive violates the National Film and Video Censors Board Act Cap No.40 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 (as amended. The process of winding down an Agency of government which came into force through an Act of Parliament should first commence by the repeal of the Act establishing the said Agency. The Oronsaye report is a committee report that should not override an Act of Parliament;

“Notes with deep concern that the ministry has been instructed to complete the administrative and financial processes to wind down the NFVCB within three weeks with effect from 21st June, 2024, and report back to the SGF’s office within the first month after it becomes a department of the ministry; and “Conscious that this abuse of rule of law if goes unchecked would become a bad precedence going forward. There is, therefore, the need to promptly check this illegality by insisting that the right procedures for winding down a statutory agency like NFVCB be followed.”

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