Reality show shocks Nigeria's TV watchdogs

Nigeria's television watchdogs want to pull the plug on a reality game show because they believe it is obscene.

    Oh brother: Fans of the voyeuristic game show will be forced to switch off

    The hit show, Big Brother, which throws together a dozen strangers in a house full of cameras has been a global success.

    However, Nigerian officials are seeking to stop local television stations from broadcasting “Big Brother Africa”, a pan-African version of the reality TV show because some of the housemates became too friendly.

    The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) said on Monday the show had “corruptive influences” on the country’s youth, culture and moral values.

    The 12 housemates of “Big Brother Africa” have won millions of loyal fans across the continent since its launch in May, as viewers tune in to watch them live their lives surrounded by hidden cameras.

    The show is tailored according to the original British and Dutch “Big Brothers” and France’s “Loft Story”- a dozen twenty-something stuck together in a flat, flirting, drinking, fighting and making-up.

    Viewers periodically vote to expel one of the flatmates and the last one wins a cash prize.

    Cultural sensitivities

    But the African version has ruffled some feathers.

    Unlike some of its European equivalents, “Big Brother Africa” does not stop the camera rolling at the bathroom door and the daily “shower hour” is one of the favourite times for viewers to tune in.

    The contestants have also raised ratings with antics in the bedroom, leading some African commentators to brand the show pornographic.

    In fact one of the contestants was flown over to London to add some spice to the British Big Brother house where the contestants' behaviour was considered boring by comparison.

    However, it has all proved too much for Nigeria’s standards watchdog who have been shocked by scenes of nudity and intimate behaviour. 

    “We are currently looking into the legal implications of whatever action we are going to take on stations that broadcast ‘Big Brother Africa’,” said an NBC official.

    “In Nigeria and in most African countries, we do not discuss or show sex in public,” he added.

    SOURCE: AFP


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