The Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC) and the Nigerian Military are set to co-produce a feature film on the life of Lt. Col. Mohammed Abu-Ali who died in the battle against Boko Haram terrorists in the Northeast.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the arrangement was part of an MoU signed by the two organistions to produce documentaries and feature films that would showcase the operations of the Nigerian military.
Dr Chidia Maduekwe, the Managing Director of the NFC, and Admiral Habila Ngalabak, Chief Defence, Civil-Military Cooperation of the Nigerian military, signed the agreement on behalf of their organisations at the Defence Headquaters on Tuesday in Abuja.
The military chief said the collaboration was to present a platform where activities of the military in defense of fatherland would henceforth be showcased through the motion picture.
He further explained that the feature film that chronicled the late Abu-Ali’s life in the military and a documentary on the operations of the military in Liberia some decades ago would be the first projects under the collaboration.
“We are starting with these two projects, and then others will follow, because this partnership has come to stay.
“The department of Civil-Military Cooperation is all about interface between civilians and the military, so that the civilians will understand what we are doing.
“There is this understanding that the military is in a world of its own and the civilians are in their own world in the same country.
“We are all Nigerians, and we want people to understand that we are all citizens of the same country.
“Being military documentaries and films, the military will supply the equipment and logistics they will require, while the filmmakers provide the expertise,” he said.
On his part, Maduekwe said the collaboration would bring about exponential growth in the nation’s motion picture industry, as rich and more appealing story lines would henceforth be produced.
He noted that the collaboration would make Nollywood films viable tools in driving patriotism, selflessness, peace and tolerance among Nigerians, irrespective of tribal and religious divides.
“Over these years, the tremendous impact of the Nigerian military have not really been captured in our films, so the time has come for the creative minds in Nigeria to do that.
“Our film industry that has been doing so well globally will now bring out story lines that put the valour and professionalism of the Nigerian Armed Forces in proper perspective.
“I salute the courage and visionary leadership of the Chief of Defence Staff who believes in the NFC.
“Filmmakers will be supported, sponsored and given all necessary encouragement so that they will use the appropriate hardware that is available with the Nigerian Arm Forces to shoot their films.
“We are talking about having template that is already in existence between Pentagon and Hollywood, and today we are seeing NFC and Defence Headquarters going into that relationship,” he said.
Maduekwe told NAN on the sideline that “from Jan. 15, we will shoot the first film that is commemorating our fallen heroes”.
NAN reports that the NFC is a Federal Government agency with the mandate to grow and develop a viable film industry for Nigeria.
It spearheads the acquisition and maintenance of facilities for film production and provides training and advancement of skills and talents of persons employed in the Nigerian film industry generally.