The newly introduced five per cent tax by the Lagos State Film and Video Censors Board (LSFVCB) is causing ripples among enterainers in the creative industry with some of them raising eyebrow over the development.
R gathered on Friday that the censors board had reportedly given operators in the entertainment industry a 30-day notice to duly register their contents with the body.
According to a statement credited to Lagos State Film and Video Censors Board and signed by its Executive Secretary,Bamidele Balogun, said “practitioners and stakeholders are also informed that henceforth, all audio and visual contents produced and sold within Lagos State shall attract the payment of five per cent levy on each item.
“This exercise will, however, assist the Lagos State Government in policy formulation, with regard to planning and funding for the sector.
“All practitioners and stakeholders in the entertainment sector within the state are advised to comply with this directive and cooperate with the authorised agent of the board.”
Meanwhile, the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria (PMAN), the umbrella body of musicians in Nigeria, has rejected the new five per cent tax, insisting that entertainers already pay income tax like other Nigerians.
President of PMAN, Pretty Okafor, said PMAN was not collaborating with the LSFVCB to fleece entertainers of five per cent of their hard-earned money.
The PMAN President said it was not part of the arrangement, adding that it would soon take legal action.
He said, “Who are the people teaming with the film and censor’s board to do that? That is an illegality upon illegality.
“The board was wrong to have met with some people who claimed to be from PMAN. This is a plot to defraud people or impose double taxation.
“So, that will not stand and our lawyers will write them soon. Who did they negotiate with? Definitely not with us because we will never defraud people. Why are they taxing content producers when they are already paying personal income tax and VAT?
Also reacting, some entertainers on Friday told R that they may soon relocate to neigbhouring states if Lagos becomes inhabitable for their business.
Some of them who took to socila media platforms to air their views urged the Lagos State government to rescind its decision in the interest of young creative minds who are struggling to put their contents out there.