What do Nigerians think of Bollywood

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On Sunday, May 20, 2018, Minister of State Müntefering traveled to Nigeria on a two-day working visit. It is her first trip to Africa in her new role as Minister of State responsible for Africa in the Federal Foreign Office.

Minister of State Müntefering met her counterpart in the Nigerian Foreign Ministry, Khadija Bukar Abba, in Nigeria and discussed the broad agenda of German-Nigerian relations. The main topics included: the situation in Nigeria in the run-up to the elections planned for 2019, the role of women, human rights, migration issues, organized crime and German support for Nigeria's work against Boko Haram and for the stabilization of the Lake Chad region.

In addition, Minister of State Müntefering held political talks in Nigeria on the current security crisis in Africa with Jean-Claude Brou, the new President of the West African ECOWAS Commission, and ECOWAS Vice President Kuroma.

State Minister Müntefering's trip also focuses on exchanges with Nigerian women and civil society on current political issues; Furthermore, meetings with cultural and filmmakers in “Nollywood”, the creative industries and with start-ups in “Yabacon Valley”.

The West African creative power Nigeria plays an important role in Africa: politically, in terms of security in the cross-border fight against terrorism and organized crime, economically and culturally. With her trip to Nigeria, Minister of State Müntefering is following on from Federal Foreign Minister Maas' visit to Africa at the beginning of May to the African Union and Tanzania. Both visits underline the central importance of Africa for German foreign policy.

Minister of State Müntefering said about her first trip to Africa to Nigeria on May 21 and 22, 2018:

It is true what I was advised to: forget everything you think you know about Africa before your first trip. Nigeria presents itself as a land of opportunities and potential. At the same time, there are risks and uncertainties in the largest African country with its around 190 million inhabitants, of which around 12 million are in the metropolis of Lagos alone, where the optimism of a young, self-confident generation of Nigerians can be felt and that of a lively start-up -Landscape and booming creative industries are reflected in "Nollywood". Artists and an active civil society with strong committed women distinguish Nigeria as a country of opportunities and cultural diversity, but one that is also aware of its challenges. Boko Haram terrorism remains a threat, especially in the north of the country, where fanatical fighters kidnap young girls, deny them schooling and terrorize entire areas. There is rural and urban poverty, and there are main roads that turn into rivers in the rainy season, bringing traffic to a virtual standstill. In discussions with our Nigerian partners, I encouraged them to take action in the fight against human trafficking and cross-border crime, while respecting human rights, and I promised them the continued support of Germany and the European Union. At the time of my visit to Nigeria, I was also able to observe the election campaign that was already beginning. Germany, Europe and Africa will look to the largest country when it goes to the polls in February 2019.