By Joshua Olomu
Nollywood actors participating at the maiden edition of Youth Educational Film Festival (YEFF) in Abuja on Monday trained young talents on how to use films to shun vices and promote nation’s building.
The film fiesta is organised by Abuja Film Village (AFV) in collaboration with the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) and an NGO, “I am the Future of Nigeria Youth Initiative (IFON).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that seasoned thespians held master class and shared experiences with participants drawn from both tertiary and secondary schools in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT)
Actors, who served as resource persons at the festival, included Charles Inojie, Segun Arinze, Victor Osuagwu, Charles Awurum, Chinedu Ikedieze, Dauda Kinsley and Ayo Emmamuel, among others.
Emeka Rollas, the National President, Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), said that the essence of the festival was to provide a platform for youngsters to showcase their talents and foster creativity among them.
“We observed that since inception of Nollywood, there were no specialised films or programmes that promote nation’s building from school level in our country.
“Therefore, it becomes imperative to embark on this educational content and promote learning outside the traditional classroom settings and address important educational themes, social issues, vices and current events.
“The overall benefits of YEFF cannot be over emphasised as it encourages creativity, self-expression, promote education and learning.
According to Rollas, it also fosters cultural exchange and inspires future careers in the creative sector.
“ This is part of our projection for social impact movies to positively rebrand our dear country, inspire our people, promote unity and help change some skewed negative perception about our people and country.
“ We therefore call on all relevant government’s agencies, NGOs and international organisations to join hands with us to make this festival an annual event to encourage our children towards nation building,” he said.
Dr Francisca Ibezim, Managing Director, Abuja Film Village (AFV), said the festival was part of flagship events conceived by the management of the AFV to drive its films through education campaign.
She added that the festival was geared towards providing a platform for young filmmakers and passionate Nigerian youths to showcase their talents.
“I am delighted that this historic event is not only hosted in the city of Abuja but also organised in partnership with the Actors Guild of Nigeria and “I am the Future of Nigeria Youth Initiative”
“This maiden edition of YEFF is in line with the vision of the Abuja Film Village to help contribute to the socio-economic development of the city and boost tourism in the FCT..
In her remarks, Mrs Noni Okocha, Chief Executive Officer of IFON, described the festival as a springboard for government at all levels to achieve their educational objectives and improve literacy nationwide.
“Successes of our media literacy and film education campaigns in secondary and tertiary schools can help shape a national plan for film education that is strategic and cost-effective.
“Films in education is therefore one of the best mediums to create awareness to help educate the nation,” she said.
Some of the participants who spoke with NAN on the sidelines, said that the film education programme was commendable.
Miss Blossom Bernard said, “this is a huge opportunity for every aspiring actor and I am very happy that I attend it.
Also, Miss Esther Adamu, studying Theatre Arts at the Nasarawa State University, described the programme as an amazing opportunity to fulfil her dreams of becoming a movie star.(NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Abdulwahab Deji