There is an epidemic of chronic moral decadence in Nigeria, but everybody is looking away. Despite appearing to be one of the most religious countries in the world, the epic fall in moral standards has refused to abate. Nigerian youths are obsessed with cutting corners to make humongous amounts of money, for the sole purpose of squandering them like drug lords in blockbuster movies. Any opportunity that dangles the fat carrot would always get the attention of the desperate ones.
It would be unfair to say it is only Nigeria that parade's rotten figures. It is a global issue; abnormalities are fast becoming the new norm in the 21st century. The only concern I have is that Nigeria is proudly marketing these questionable figures to the outside world. The theatre of obscenities - the Big Brother Naija reality show is airing again, and the dark sides of Nigerian society are being shown on TV screens in high definition to the world. This is happening as other African countries like Kenya and Rwanda are painstakingly building their images as the tech hubs of the continent to attract Foreign Direct Investment, FDI.
When the organizers of the BBNaija show are shopping for contestants, they are not sincerely interested in the egg-heads. They are searching for good-looking, flashy but empty, and jobless Nigerian youths. These are people with cooked-up resumes about non-existent businesses and phantom entertainment records. The organizers are searching for beautiful women of easy virtue, products of self-obsessed cosmetic surgeries, seeking a media platform to market themselves before moneybags, as objects of high-class pleasure. The program showcases fiery ill-mannered ladies with short tempers. These ladies have the propensity to stir up intense drama to entertain the viewing public. The show is interested in loose women who are some to build romantic/sex relationships with fellow housemates in a matter of seconds of physical encounters. What about the men? They are sexually vulnerable and emotionally unstable. They put on a fake persona and it is called a 'game plan', aimed at boosting their chances of success in the reality show.
Even when professionals in the class of an IT expert and a doctor graced the show at different seasons, they fell by the roadside. This is because the show is designed for individuals who could bring thick smoke, fire, and stink out the entire place. The more chaos or scandals recorded achieved by the housemates, the higher their ratings and viewers' participation in the form of paid votes. There have been instances of the faceless lead figure - Big Brother purposely causing a fracas in the show to pitch housemates against each other under the guise of what is called a 'secret task'.
The controversial reality show is as insensitive as watching a mentally challenged person dance unclad in the market with relish, just because they are not a family member. With due respect, the show is the den of uncultured women who either tease me with their bodies under the prying lenses of the CCTV or outrightly sleep with them due to a lack of self-control and sense of dignity. Of course, this can not apply to all the participants of the show as there are a few decent ones.
On a majority level, it features pseudo-revolutionary females who hide under the guise of feminism, to gratuitously challenge and undermine men. This is the camp of women with surgically-enhanced bodies who would later litter the internet with adult content. This is done with the hope of attracting men with ill-gotten wealth to hand them a fairy-tale lifestyle. This writer is trying so hard to mince words to avoid name-calling and committing slander/libel. The products of this show end up being social media influencers with no substance. They easily amass vulnerable followers and subsequently lead them astray, due to the propagation of negative values.
It should be noted that this piece isn't an attempt to assassinate the characters or question the integrity of the participants and organizers. It is just the bitter truth that needs to be told. The show has produced some amazing individuals who are doing well and keeping it decent with their private lives. Kudos to the good few.
The latest edition of the show known as the BBNaija All-Star edition is coming at a critical point in the political landscape of Nigeria. There are credible claims that a popular presidential candidate - Peter Obi's mandate was stolen in the last general elections. He is seeking redress in court. The government of the day appears to be squeezing blood out of the bodies of the already emaciated citizens, for the purpose of fueling the wrecked vehicle called Nigeria. The poor masses are pushed to the wall. There are conversations about whether the country needs a revolution or evolution to move forward. And then, a distraction like this reality show sets in. Could this be a mere coincidence?
A colleague of mine at work told me he suspects the reality show was sponsored by the Federal Government to distract the people from the current economic hardship in the country. I blatantly disagree with such conspiracy theories, but you can't blame him. The amount of public attention the show attracts is also baffling to me. It beggars belief.
What stops the owners of the show - the Banijay Group of Enterprises from hosting a show that celebrates the brightest talents in Nigeria like CNN African Voices, Marketplace Africa, and others? This could boost Foreign Direct Investment as investors would want to tap into the talent pool of vast human resources in the long run.
The level of moral decadence in Nigeria is at an all-time high and it needs no further exposure or enabling ground for growth. On social media today, the only private part of a female's body that can't be shared online is her INTESTINES. Young ladies now openly sell their bodies on social media like butchers in the marketplace. Internet fraudsters also achieve celebrity status after being arrested, paraded, and prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. Our music - Afrobeat is now very filthy. It promotes all the vices you can ever think of in a highly melodic way. The music artistes with meaningful content suffer in vain to find an audience, yet we are a highly religious country. What an irony! This is not the Nigeria of our dreams. Nigeria is failing on all fronts. The truth needs to be told no matter whose ox is gored.
Osahon George Osayimwen writes from the United Kingdom