Emeka Mba: Pioneering the Future of Media and Entertainment – Chief Original Gangstar
One thing that we know for sure is that the media sector in Nigeria has come a long way. From the days of producing monochromatic films to the era of the African Magic packages, to the present when our media can cross borders and impact different continents and cultures through the power of social media. Sure, these feats should be celebrated because it is a mark of how Nigeria has gone from a country whose movie industry had a lot of questionable cinematographic techniques to a nation from which international film/entertainment awardees are emerging. That is why we have to give honour to the “gangstar” individuals who are changing the Nigerian narrative through media and entertainment, thereby paving a promising and innovative future for these sectors in Africa’s largest nation.
In today’s issue of Chief Original Gangstar, our COG is Emeka Mba, the remarkable Founder and CEO of Afia TV, whose almost 3 decades in the media and entertainment industry have contributed significantly to the Nigerian film industry that we know and appreciate today. In this issue, we will be providing an inside scoop on the different avenues through which he has impacted the film and entertainment landscape and the multiple roles he has had to play through this journey.
Emeka Mba, a man known for his easygoing nature and relentless work ethic, has dedicated over 28 years to the media, entertainment, and communications technology sectors. He’s not just a veteran in these fields; he’s a trailblazer who has constantly pushed the boundaries of what’s possible, taking Nollywood to unprecedented heights.
His journey is nothing short of remarkable. Mba served as the Director General/CEO of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Nigeria’s broadcasting regulator. During his tenure, he reshaped the commission, successfully raising funds for the crucial analogue to digital transition—a pivotal milestone for the Nigerian broadcasting industry.
Mba’s impact extends far beyond his leadership at the NBC. He also served two terms as the Director General of the National Film Video Censors Board (NFVCB), a federal government agency responsible for regulating films and video works’ distribution and exhibition in Nigeria. Under his guidance, the NFVCB transformed from a mere regulator into a catalyst for global opportunities in the entertainment industry.
It’s astonishing how Emeka Mba managed to achieve so much in the media and entertainment industry before turning 50. When he finally reached the milestone of 50, the tabloids had a lot to say about him because, though he was a silent man, his actions were loud and distinct. His relentless pursuit of excellence and the ability to reinvent himself continually have set him apart.
As a silent yet diligent achiever, Mba’s influence can be seen in his masterminding of the launch of “AfricaMagic,” the continent’s first satellite movie channel on the DStv bouquet. This groundbreaking achievement showcased his ability to create opportunities for the entertainment industry.
But Mba’s journey isn’t just about achievements on paper. He’s a dedicated family man, a friend to many, and a mentor to those lucky enough to know him. His enduring qualities extend to his role as a team player and a helping hand, always ready to support others.
Emeka Mba isn’t just living in past legacy. Even in the present age where media and entertainment have taken a more digitalised curve, he continues to shape the future of media and entertainment. As the CEO of Afia TV, a leading indigenous TV channel, and the recently established Afia Radio, Emeka Mba is taking the industry to new heights and is training many young people to ensure the advancement of media, communications, and entertainment in Africa.
During a recent talk at PAN Atlantic University, Mba emphasised the importance of innovation and adapting to evolving consumer needs. He highlighted the role of data, social media, subscription models, and content creation in driving innovation within the industry.
Mba also stressed the power of multi-level data in delivering innovative broadcasting solutions. By understanding audience preferences and addressing social issues through programming, media organisations can attract new businesses, turning attention and traffic into financial gain.
Emeka Mba’s visionary approach to building innovative platforms and leveraging data-driven insights has left a lasting impact on the media industry. He encourages aspiring media professionals to embrace the changing media landscape, produce compelling content, and understand the evolving needs of their audiences.
As we celebrate Emeka Mba’s achievements and the incredible impact he’s had on the world of media and entertainment, we can’t help but wonder what new frontiers he’ll explore next. One thing is certain: his journey is far from over, and his vision will continue to shape the trajectory of these industries for years to come.
Rosemary Kasiobi Nwadike
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