By Arogbonlo Israel
Some representatives of Nollywood have pledged their support for Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello ahead of the 2023 presidential election.
Yahaya Bello had received the Nollywood stars on Tuesday in Abuja where the latter promised to canvass support for the youth governor, saying the Nigeria film industry has a great role to play in the actualisation of the governor’s purported presidential ambition.
The Leader of the delegation, Mr Seun Oloketuyi commended governor Bello for his efforts on youth inclusion in governance, stating that it was what the country needed while he pledged the support of Nollywood to governor Bello as they urged him to come out for President come 2023.
“Nollywood is the second employer of labor today. We believe that ahead of the 2023 elections Nollywood has a great role to play as most of the stars have very huge followers which makes them influential in what they say.
“Going into 2023, the Nollywood stars have said they will not just sit down and fold their hands but sensitize their followers on voting for a youth as President in person of governor Yahaya Bello,” Oloketuyi said.
In his remarks, Dr Segun Okeowo, Director-General, Best of Nollywood (BON) presented a notification of interest to Bello, seeking the State to host the 13th edition of the BON award in November.
Reacting, governor Bello appreciated the Nollywood stars for their contributions in the creative industry which has contributed to increasing Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), employment, youth empowerment and showcasing Nigeria to the world, adding that as they were urging him to run for President in 2023, while he would listen to them, he would throw a challenge at them to play active roles in political participation in the country as he was also playing his part in nation building.
According to him, his administration has also taken into cognizance that what will last longer than the present generation is a knowledge-based economy rather than a resource-based economy, emphasising on the need for developing of human and knowledge-based resources, especially through youth inclusion in governance.
He noted that the State before he was sworn in used to be a state that was divided among herself, a long ethnic line, religious line, class, background and several other types of criminality used to be the order of the day but by his leadership style and the various touch of qualities of the young men and women he was able to assemble, the reverse was the case currently.
He, however, added that Kogi State would soon be an oil producing state and such feet would be celebrated, but this is the greatest undoing of Nigeria where “we are depending solely on resources, either oil or solid minerals”.
“We have been able to discover that we have these solid minerals but we are establishing a University that is coming up this year that will be second to none in Nigeria where we are going to develop our knowledge.
“Where our solids minerals will no longer leave Kogi State in raw form again, that is what we need in Nigeria,” Bello said.
In conclusion, Yahaya Bello advised Nigeria would effectively tackle problems of economic deficit, insecurity, poor infrastructure and other concerns by engaging localised strategies noting that Kogi state has been able to achieve successes across all sectors by applying a mix of local solutions, knowledge and human based resources to address theses challenges.