Weighing in on the global acceptance and importance of Nollywood, Dr Ikpeazu said Nigeria used to receive a lot of flaks from the outside world but, “In the last couple of years, we now receive considerable buffer from Nollywood. Nollywood has given us a new level of respect across the world. Therefore, when I was approached to host the awards, I thought that while this might not be the best of times financially for us as a state, it avails us a platform to bring the industry back home, show our various tourism and economic potential and join you to celebrate an industry which contribution to the GDP of Nigeria is invaluable.”
Continuing, he said, “For us in Abia State, Nollywood has contributed immensely to the well-being of our people because one of the marketing and distribution pivots of the industry, Pound Road, is here in Aba, the SME capital of Africa. Just like Idumota in Lagos and Iweka Road, Onitsha, Pound Road contributes more than 50percent to Nollywood. So, prior to now, I always thought about how to further get involved with the industry which is why we are working on a film village and are glad to host the Best of Nollywood Awards 2016. ” Dr Ikpeazu promised that the state would join forces with the organizing team to produce a world class event that would surpass all other editions and create the high watermark by which awards ceremonies in Nigeria and beyond would be measured.
The executive producer, Seun Oloketuyi, thanked the governor for agreeing to host the event, saying, “The Best of Nollywood Awards was created in 2009 as a veritable premium platform to honour the enterprise and ingenuity of stars and stakeholders of the Nigerian movie industry otherwise known as Nollywood. I am happy to say that we are now the longest running homegrown movie awards ceremony. We designed BON as a travelling awards ceremony and in the intervening years, has been hosted by the Ogun State government under Otunba Gbenga Daniel, the Delta State government (Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan), the Rivers State government (Hon. Rotimi Amaechi) and the Ondo State government (Dr. Olusegun Mimiko).” Oloketuyi assured the governor that there’s no better ceremony to officially launch the new ultra-modern international events centre being constructed by the state than the BON Awards.