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Impact of Home Movies on Nigerian Children

Children are tomorrow’s leaders and the hope of today’s generation.

It is upsetting to see children’s moral decay uncontrolled as a result of a lack of sufficient instruction and supervision over home movies and media content.

Regrettably, while parents and guardians hesitate to seize the bull by the horns, society and the media have not stopped bombarding these young minds with unwholesome content unsuited for their age.

Many parents and guardians fail to recognize the degree of intelligence that their children and wards are born with and as a result, they enable them to unrestrictedly ingest every bit of information within their grasp.

According to studies, TV entertainment (home movies) has a more profound and overwhelming effect on youngsters.

Today, a surge in film and movie-induced crimes such as murder, armed robbery, rioting, arson, kidnapping, gangsterism, and rape, among other illegal practices associated with young people, dominate the headlines and lead the news.

According to the National Bureau of Statistics, Nollywood produced 635 movies in the second quarter of 2021, an increase compared to 416 movies produced in the first quarter of the year, the figure indicating a growth of +53.93% quarter on quarter.

Home movies and television have also been shown to have harmful effects on children, ranging from bad health and development consequences, language development concerns in children under the age of two, obesity, tobacco usage, and aggression and attention disorder in older children.

Though not all television shows are morally repugnant, research demonstrating the harmful impacts of violence, improper sexuality, and offensive language is compelling.

Moral decline rhetoric

According to one study, 65% of children responded to watching Nollywood movies without parental supervision, whereas 34% watched with parental supervision; 55% liked action-packed films, while 44% choose comedies.

These data unequivocally validate the moral decline rhetoric prevalent among Nigerian children and youths. Some psychologists and researchers believe that children and adolescents should only watch movies that are specifically aimed at their age group unfortunately though, many home movies made for children are not regulated by the National Film and Video Censors Board, NFVCB, since there are many unregistered and unrecognized movie industries cropping up all across the country.

The moment has come for parents, guardians, society as a whole, including the government, to unite in order to assist the children who are being gradually swallowed into a system of moral depravity and lawlessness.

Nigeria has already suffered enough as a result of the blows of bloodshed, terrorism, and instability and if nothing is done today to guide youngsters correctly in terms of the entertainment they absorb, they will most likely become more morally bankrupt.

The National Film and Video Censors Board must strictly censor and inspect all domestic and imported films and the government must provide fiscal assistance to address this unfavourable scenario and also take strict measures to support the actions of the Board and any other body charged with similar responsibilities.

The NFVCB shall also organize a public awareness campaign to enlighten, educate, and sensitize the public about the benefits and drawbacks of films, film ratings, and the overall impact of movies on children and adolescents, including the necessity for parental supervision when watching near-adult films.

These solutions, if thoroughly implemented will go a long way toward restoring sacredness and resolving the moral deterioration among Nigerian youngsters.

Written by Obinna Ezenwa, a corps member with our current affairs unit; Editing by Saadatu Albashir