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DGN Honours Ooni Of Ife As Grand Patron by PTVNEWS: 10:08am On Dec 19, 2019
By Perekeme Odon

It was celebration galore, epoch of cultural glitziness, excitement and exhilarating enthusiasm away from the average push and rush as family and friends of the apex custodian of the Nigerian filmmaking body, Directors’ Guild of Nigeria (DGN) decorated, invested and conferred with a befitting honour on the Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty Oonirisa Kabiyesi Adeyeye Enitan Babatunde Ogunwusi as the Grand Patron of DGN and Imperial Majesty of Nollywood.

Nollywood actor/director and incumbent President of the Directors’ Guild of Nigeria (DGN), Olorogun Fred Amata, made the conferment to the Ooni of Ife on Tuesday, December 18, 2019, at his Arole Oodua Enuma Palace, Ile-Ife, Osun State of Nigeria as part of activities marking the guild’s 20th anniversary holding in March 2020 at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

During the majestic visit to the Ooni Royal Palace, the entourage had distinctive impressions about the Ooni, but one thing that immediately strikes a first time visitor to the Palace is the Ooni's uncommon affability and intellectualism. His love for his people is adequately reciprocated, as the entire palace ground swarms with people of different statuses and of various tribes and creeds.

The exclusive experience started with an opening prayer by one of Nollywood finest award-winning director, Mr. Teco Benson (MFR) and followed by the introduction of the delegates by DGN Founding President, Mr. Mathias Obahiagbon.

Speaking at the conferment ceremony, the DGN President, Olorogun Fred Amata highlighted some pressing needs affecting the Nigerian movie industry and said the guild had taken proactive steps to overhaul film production in order to position it toward professionalism, entrepreneurship, and competitiveness.

“I am overwhelmed, privileged and honoured today to be leading a delegation of famous people of Nollywood to this land of greatness and cradle of civilization. There are various other guilds and associations in Nollywood. Our purpose of coming here despite the fame we have achieved is to felicitate and identify with this great land and King in the service to our creativity, humanity, and provision of assistance to professional filmmaking in Nigeria. Thank you for accepting DGN as we believe this synergy and bonding mark a new positive beginning for continuous support and encouragement to better the guild and the Nigerian movie industry.” He declared.

Furthermore granted was a brief speech by the DGN BOT Member, Chief Zeb Ejiro (OFR) who upheld the action as colossal for the guild said; “I bring greetings from the Board as its Chairman. This is a massive achievement for the Directors’ Guild of Nigeria because the guild is the creative arm of Nollywood that makes Nigeria the third largest film-producing nation in the world. Thank you and God bless you as we will come again and again to meet your doors open.” He asserted.

The President, Association of Movie Producer (AMP), Mr. Ralph Nwadike also expressed his gratitude and admirations vis-à-vis the epoch-making event. “My father, you have made me proud for giving us a new name and height. It is indeed a great honour for Nollywood to have a great King, Imperial Majesty, Ooni of Ile-Ife as a Grand Patron of Directors’ Guild of Nigeria. Thank you for making it possible for us to be here today and let the world hear that Nollywood has come to stay.” He stated.

The Oni of Ife, who rolled out various African cuisine and fanfare during the ceremony which he tagged ‘Tonight Is The Night’ thanked DGN for the honour bestowed him and tasked them to come up with an improved method of taking the movie industry to another level.

“I greet all members and executives of the Directors’ Guild of Nigeria. It is indeed a great honour and adoration to have you here. You have shown me, love, peace, and a sign of togetherness. I don’t know who told you to come to make me your Grand Patron, because I am very happy to associate with you from today. I am a very active supporter of the movie industry in Nigeria. I have supported lots of movie initiatives and projects in Nigeria. Things I have been doing indirectly can be done directly now.” He stated.

The Ooni went on to charge filmmakers for their relentless efforts in ensuring that the world has come to know us with our movies.. “Everyone is running after Netflix. Why can’t we have our own Netflix here? Why can’t we have hubs where we can be downloading movies and think outside the box? I built a resort in Lagos. It is one of the biggest resorts in Nigeria with about 250 hectares of land. My plan was to build a movie city before I became a King. Several movies have actually been done there. I have been thinking aloud that in this country we should have a movie city like what they have in California. Even as a King I am trying to build a film city that is called Ife Grand Resort and trying to take it to another level.” He said.

Kabiyesi commended members of the guild for the stimulating contributions made and promised to help them since piracy and other vices affecting filmmaking in Nigeria are fading out gradually.

“We will definitely work together. Right now we are doing Moremi Theatre we taking to Broadway in a few month's time. Now that you have given me what I am very passionate about by bringing me on board as your Grand Patron, I will also make sure that those powerful people in Nigeria are brought on board with you. There are a lot of people that are getting very much interested in the Nigerian movie industry. So it is all-important for us to all sit down and see how to take it to another level because I will support you wholeheartedly.” He affirmed.

Present at the event are DGN Founding Member, Mr. Sam Azubuike, Leader of the delegation, Chief Peddie Okao, AVOA President, Ngozi Ogbonna, Rycardo Agbor, DGN Financial Secretary, Dr. Tony Akposheri, Davidson Izegaegbe, Ricardo Agbor, Johnbull Negbenebor, Angela Philips, Vivian Okoro, Kemi Adekomi, DGN PH Zonal Coordinator, Dr. Sammy Ogunbiyi, Prince Olayinka Ibikunle, Prince Tunji Onochie Aderibigbe, AGN National Secretary, Abubakar Yakubu, Prince Olayinka Awosunle Christopher, and Dr. Kenneth Njoku.

Others include Ooni of Ife Media Officer, Comrade Moses Olafare, Obafemi Awolowo University Director of Business School, Dr. Prince Makinwa & HOD, Public Health, OAU Prof. Olapeju Esimai, DGN PRO, Perekeme Odon, DGN National Secretary, Uchenna Agbo, DGN Provost, Osita Okoli. Victor Emeghara, Uche Iwuji, DGN PH Zonal Secretary, Fred Mayford, Ijeoma Imo, and Stephanie Osaghae.

Re: DGN Honours Ooni Of Ife As Grand Patron by popsy2(m): 10:24am On Dec 19, 2019
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