Abuja bubbles for BOBTV
Mrs. Amaka Igwe is CEO of Best of the Best Television, known as BOBTV. Popularly known before now as the CEO of Amaka Igwe Studios, she is the driving force behind the well-publicised BOBTV 2005, which is set to send Abuja bobbling from Monday March 14 to18 2005.
In this encounter, Mrs Igwe throws light on why BOBTV is happening now.
What is BOBTV?
BOBTV is an acronym for Best of the Best television. The idea was conceived in 2002. We felt there was need to upgrade the quality of programming available to our local Television stations, in a way that they would meet international standards. It held at the Lagos Sheraton Hotel and towers. BOBTV is the largest African Film and Television Programmes market in the world.”
What is the focus of BOBTV 2005?
BOBTV expands the initial concept to accommodate the present and future imperatives for content of African origin for television broadcast, home entertainment, cinematic and other applications. Specifically, it addresses distribution and its structures, manpower development and training. It also encompasses the domestic and export markets as well as policy driven incentives for investors and participants in the Nigerian creative content industry. This covers the area of movies and television programmes. Yes, BOBTV 2005 provides the platform to fully capture the global impact of Nigerian movies and television programmes. We are confident that BOBTV 2005 shall stand as one of the pillars for the growth of the audio visual content industry in Africa. This will give us a valid voice in the most powerful medium of influence in the world. There is no doubt that with the home video, Nigeria is penetrating homes across the world. This is why the subject of content should be of importance to everyone, government inclusive.
How will the market operate?
“You can call it a trade fair, but one with a difference, one that addresses the peculiar interest of film and TV. BOBTV 2005 is about conferences, discussions and debates on critical issues affecting the development and distribution of content in Nigeria and Africa. It is about exhibition of finished products, new ideas, equipment and processes. It has what we call skill factory, where skill acquisition will be focused on. We have packaged training courses, drawing resource persons from Canada, Europe, and the United States. The event shall feature Premieres and screenings of top quality Nigerian and African movies and Television Programmes.
Who do we expect at BOBTV?
“To begin with, we are expecting dignitaries from across the continent, from Europe and from America. Here at home, the occasion shall be flagged off by no less a person than the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. We are expecting governors, who will be addressed by the Finance Minister, who in any case, has publicly declared her passion for the industry. The United States Ambassador has confirmed his particaption as a guest of honour at the governor's forum. The government of Egypt is sending a delegation. Sierra Leone TV is coming. The constituencies, that is the film making community in Nigeria, comprising delegates from Lagos, Onitsha, Abuja, Aba, Port Harcourt, Kano, Katsina, Kaduna, Bauchi , Jos , Enugu, Owerri, are for the first time, coming together to enhance their businesses. Dr. (Mrs). Ezekwesili will be presenting a paper at the occasion. And also for the first time, government is throwing its full weight behind a private sector driven project of this nature, with the participation of the Information Minister, the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation, the Nigeria Film Coproation among others.”
The list of dignitaries is legion.
BOBTV 2005 expects over 200 television stations from 54 countries to attend, over 70 Nigerian television stations and over 500 creators and distributors of content. We also have confirmations of participation from ancillary industries that supply the content industry including Sky Media, Digital Media, Transerve, among a host of others.”
How prepared is Nigeria to play host to this August gathering?
Very prepared. Nigeria is Africa's leading content maker in movies and TV programmes. We are the third largest movie producing country in the World. This at least was confirmed by the BBC Focus on Africa last year. It is no longer news that Nigerian movies have become a distinct and globally recognised brand. One of the anomalies we are trying to rectify is that Nigeria has not taken its pride of place in the international scene. The truth is that Nigerian content makers and indeed African content makers have had to go to markets and festivals in other countries and continents to be seen and acknowledged. It is sad that we have to travel overseas to sell our products. The standard is for people to visit markets to purchase stuffs. The market should not be moved to the buyers. My point is that BOBTV has been structured to encourage buyers to come to Nigeria to shop for film and TV contents.”