Big Brother Naija (BBNaija), formerly known as Big Brother Nigeria, is a Nigerian reality competition television series, based on the Big Brother television franchise, in which 12 to 21 contestants live in an isolated house and compete for a large cash prize ranging from 25 to 85million naira and other material gifts.
These contestants maybe through their actions in the house or their personalities try to Garner votes from viewers and loved ones in order to avoid being evicted from the house.
This reality TV show was first aired on DStv channels in 2006 as a platform to promote the Nigerian brand as well as the rising dominance of the country’s entertainers on the entertainment scene in Africa.
This show is viewed by approximately 30 million people among which the greater number are students and young adults. Since this reality show started there has been controversies and public outcry by concerned citizens if the reality TV should continue to be aired as it drives negative impacts on Nigerian youths or any other nationality watching it. This show is aired to see how 21 or 20 (the number of housemates in the current season) adults of different backgrounds and personalities can struggle to live, as each week a task is assigned to them and a head of house is chosen and also stands a chance of winning one million naira per week.
Some Nigerians have mixed feelings over the removal of this reality Tv show as it doesn’t favour the country’s needs in this trying times of development. Nigeria despite its development and love for the western culture is a country that is quite conservative and strict about moral values.
So, for some bunch of housemates to just have sex live on TV at some point during the show seems pointless for the concept of this show and boring. The older generation feels it should be banned, but Big Brother Naija is targeted at a younger generation, so it’s clear why the youths might want more of this which leads to questions like: how has the big brother naija show helped youths who are mostly students in their academics and in pursuit of their careers? Can students devote the amount of time given to the show or even lesser to their studies? How can the future Albert Einstein, Isaac Newton, Marie Curie, Okonjo Iwuala and other amazing personalities in different fields arise or even get to their full potentials if they are all focused on watching a program that adds no intellectual value to them?
Research carried out by various students from different universities In the country showed that the show does influence students behaviour, attitude to studies, encouragement of sexual promiscuity and immorality, indecent dressing, use of bad language, encouragement of the get-rich-quick syndrome amongst other vices. Though these researchers focused more on BBA (Big brother Africa), both shows promote the same vices which is really detrimental to the future of any nation that hopes to move forward.
During my days as an undergraduate I experienced first hand how students could hardly wait for the show to be aired and when it finally begins the dedication to both favorite housemates and the show is alarming, most of which is done at the expense of their studies. Students living in my hostel go as far as quarreling, malice keeping and even fighting just to be among those to sit in the front seat and watch the show.
In all these I ask myself if doing all these for a show that adds no value to you is really worth it. Many might argue that the reality TV show is purely for entertainment and enjoyment yet there are other entertaining yet intellectual programs like the who wants to be a millionaire hosted by Frank Edoho where different questions that require your knowledge are asked, Gulder ultimate search, MTN project Fame amongst others which achieve the same entertainment goals.
In my opinion, BBNaija should be censored or better still the organizers should imbibe and put up intellectual content that challenges the reasoning of the housemates and test their abilities which will in turn positively influence the viewers and also serve as encouragement to serious minded students that hard work pays. My candid advice to students is to watch programs that will help stimulate their brain cells into thinking outside the box, come up with ideas and practicable solutions to various problems that ail the society because the world is counting on you waiting on you to blaze the trail.