Government has expressed concern at the increasing levels of pornographic materials being smuggled into the country.
Information and Broadcasting Services minister Mike Mulongoti observed that such illicit materials do not only contribute to the erosion of the moral fiber of society but also to the rise in the number of sexual offences such as child defilement and rape.
The minister said it was for this reason that his Ministry which is responsible which is responsible for theatre and cinematography, is working hard to put in place legislation that will limit the accessibility and exposure of young people to pornographic materials.
Mr Mulongoti said this in Nakonde yesterday during the destruction of pirated and counterfeit video and audio materials worth over K6bn.
The minister who is also chief government spokesperson, said the destruction of the pirated materials which were confiscated by the Nakonde Anti-Piracy crack squad, was a demonstration of government’s commitment to eradicating piracy in the country.
“It is my since hope that this event will send a signal to those involved in peddling of pirated materials that no matter the magnitude of the vice, government was determined to fight it,” the Minister emphasized.
Mr Mulongoti who was flanked by his Permanent Secretary Emmanuel Nyirenda, added that the occasion was important to his Ministry as a custodian of the Copyright and Performance Rights Act.
The Minister said it was evident from the high monetary value of the confiscated items that a lot of traders were engaged in selling pirated products.
He called for seriousness in the fight against the vice saying government was continuously losing huge sums of revenue from the illegal trade while the copy right owners were also being robbed of the fruits of their sweat.
Mr Mulongo also disclosed that government has started strengthening the Copyright Unit in his Ministry by doubling its budgetary allocation this year in order to step up its anti piracy activities.
The Minister who paid growing tribute to the Nakonde Anti Piracy Crack Squad, however warned the squad members not to fall prey to bribes from the traders.
Information Permanent Secretary, Emmanuel Nyirenda and several other senior government officials’ witnessed the destruction of the pirated materials in Nakonde yesterday.