While the atrocious programme dubbed Big Brother Naija formerly known as the Big Brother Nigeria went rife, got enormous interest and has turned the topic of the day, I find it necessary to exempt myself from the contemporary bevy of youths who had been blindfolded with the ransom attached to it or probably due to the satanic propensities acted upon, chose to make it a norm to patronise and view this programme, yell at every sexualized movement and take it up at social media to defend the “positive” benefits veiled within the apparent and nebulous film show.
Let us tour down the lane of history when the programmed incepted in 2006 and lapses from March 5 to June 4, christening Katung Aduwak as the winner after some varieties of favoritism had been played out and withdrew victory from Ebuka Obi- Uchendu. And I’m being propped to ask where the losers are presently- are they down the street rummaging it? No. Katung Aduwak is now an adept director schooled at New York and bagged a directorial degree in Digital Film Academy, famous for his well known movies; Unwanted Guest and Heavenly Hell. Ebuka Obi- Uchendu later went for his masters, wrote several newspapers and magazines and now the host who anchors a mind-blogging programme on channels TV, Rubbin’ minds. We also have the likes of Sandra Osaigbo, Sandy, who is a fellow at the Institute if Registered and pretty doing well.
While the writers are not ignorance of this boom and successes,it is mightily sardonic that the once utmost conflicting and agonizing topic of the day has turned into the cherished film show who makes many uneasy if failed to see an episode. It further increases the number of subscribers and viewers amidst youths; let do a quick calculation on how the subscribers immensely aid the programme blossom. To vote for your best contestant to avoid eviction, it is done either online or offline. While the former is free the latter costs the sum of #30(#50 when the programme is own) and according to Premiumtimes, over 26 million persons views the programme. Now assumably, 20% votes(20% of 26 million) results into 5.2million, multipled by #30(if eventually no one votes during the programme) amounts to #156 million. What a whooping some of money trooping into the account of one of their sponsors, PayPorte eCommerce.
Presumably, this article is to express my discontent about the negative outcome the programme is inflicting on us, Youth of Nigeria who had already be rained with myriads of tumultuous problems, ranging from unemployment, kidnapping, nefarious slaughtering and poor educational system, it is no gainsaying that the piece is to serve as an eye opener to those who will reason along the path I trend and disregard what concocted and ominous omen this film show covers.
Unknown to all, it came back with a well-framed and strategic plan after 11 years of silence, in 2017. Here is the third season, as announced before the commencement in January 2018,the sum of #48 million will be awarded to the winner. The previous winner and an upcoming Warri Artiste, Efe Ejeba, went home with a brand new Kia Sorento SUV and N25 million naira cash prize. Also, he was appreciated, appraised and honored throughout the country after the show by many state governors perhaps as if he was the Messiah. I pity what our culturally desired human qualities and attributes of success will be in years to come.
The question is: how did he(Efe) contribute to nation building, national growth and development to have deserved this much honor? This honor was accorded to him alone even despite the fact that we have many youths who are inventors, intellectuals, and talented in different areas who could not get support from any government. Many first class graduates are denied automatic employment and all.
Well, I will like to address this issue sociologically as much as I can. Robert K.Merton, in his critical functionalist theory, came up with some different assumptions which are helpful in seeing the previously and gullibly held beliefs about sociocultural and structural events, values, and norms in the society. He noted that, as opposed to the early sociologists, sociocultural events, values and norms in the society can be dysfunctional and nonfunctional. This means a sociocultural event and norm can posses negative functions or no function at all respectively. And that a sociocultural event or norm can be both functional and dysfunctional, in such a way that it will give room for net balance which will calculate the balance between the negative and positive functions of an event.
In this light, I will like to state it loud and clear that, using the functional level of analysis as prescribed by Merton in calculating how the functions of an event weigh its dysfunctions or vice versa, “BBN” has much more disadvantages than its advantages to the society. It has brought about transmission of public nonsense on stations across the nation; sexual intercourse being done openly and all that. It also makes many youths to lose creativity just because they find something to see 24/7 even despite the fact that they do not know the concept of the show. Ladies are now gradually losing their worth just because of the money involved.
Well, don’t let me be too negative about the programme, inarguably it opiates and designs the lives of youths; as many youths who have forcefully become idle find themselves lively and have their days filled with fun as they see it. This opium makes the youths to forget their sorrows of unemployment and many issues. The attention gotten by this programme alone is enough to make people become insensitive to pressing sociopolitical issues in Nigeria.
Now to the general public to objectively view from our outpouring; what’s the fate of an unsteady youths who can sell her own body to get a place into the contest and yet be evicted at earlier stage? What’s the fate of youths who has decided conclusively to neglect importance issues like education, politics, et al?
The retrogressive effect are likely to be a steady and uncontrollable rape cases, rot and negligence of education and other preposterous and laughable effect.
Now, over to you to be the judge?
Dot the I and crossed the T.
AKINOLA AKINWALE & CHUKWU EPHRAIM NONSO
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Obafemi Awolowo University