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Entertainment BON Awards: Amaechi Did Not Insult Nollywood Practitioners - Organisers

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Organisers of the Best of Nollywood (BON) awards have debunked reports that Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State hurled insults at Nollywood actresses at the 2014 edition of the event held in Port Harcourt, Rivers state.
According to earlier reports, shortly after Amaechi handed veteran actress, Liz Benson a Lifetime Achievement Award, he described Nollywood practioners as products of circumstances aadding that they were in Nollywood because they couldn’t find other jobs; that the actors studied sciences, law, medicine etc, but because they couldn’t find jobs, they embraced the Nigerian movie industry.
The report had also added that the governor had gone as far as revealing controversial secrets about how he always gives veteran actresses Joke Silva and Kate Henshaw bags of money whenever they visited RIvers State.
Debunking the reports, the organisers of the event released a statement in a bid to set the records straight. Read excerpts of the statement below:

““While we consider the report malicious, mediocre and outright falsehood on which the blogger thrives, it is expedient to however set the record straight.

“At no point did Governor Amaechi insult Nollywood practitioners. Instead, he commended them for growing the industry into a multi billion naira industry without any form of institutional or government support.

“Nollywood, he says, now employs hundreds of thousands of Nigerian youths who, despite their qualifications, may have remained jobless because of the unemployment challenge in Nigeria, which has led to a situation whereby graduates of medicine, law and other such disciplines end up in Nollywood.

“At that point, popular entertainer, Okey Bakassi, interrupted the governor, saying he is an agricultural engineering graduate of the Rivers State University of Science and Technology, which threw the whole hall into laughter.

“The Governor then recalled that at the 40th birthday party of Kate Henshaw a while back, Basorge Tariah Jnr reminded her how they used to slap the streets in search of jobs and that it was Nollywood that rescued them.

“...At no point did the Governor say he gives Kate Henshaw money. He did, however, say that the state has contracted Mrs Joke Jacobs to turn Chinua Achebe’s political satire, ‘A Man of the People’, into a movie because of its inherent, timeless social message.

“After his speech, an excited Patience Ozokwor re-invited the Governor to the stage to co-present the Movie of The Year award.

“We wonder if the practitioners did indeed feel insulted, the Governor would still receive a standing ovation for stating that after his term in office expires, he would devote the next couple of years to reading and research and that one of the research topics he has chosen is the dynamism and evolution of Nollywood.

“The video of his full speech would be on social media platforms in a few hours.

“It is noteworthy to mention that despite starting behind schedule, Governor Amaechi sat through the awards which lasted over three hours.

“We therefore want discerning Nigerians to discountenance this ill-intentioned report as it is not only the product of warped reasoning and deliberate misinterpretation, it is most uncharitable to Governor Amaechi and demeaning to the Nollywood stars and stakeholders that were at the event”.

Whose side are you on in this ongoing drama?

#RotimiAmaechi #NollywoodPractitioners #JokeSilva #KateHenshaw

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