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|Reality Of Reality Shows In Nigeria by yicob(m): 2:39pm On Oct 21, 2007|
The Reality of Reality Shows in Nigeria
If you are yet to attend any reality show in Nigeria, my advice to you is to stay calm at home to hear about it or probably watch it on T.V than for you to go to the camouflaged venue of the event only to be exhausted and dehydrated by the so called elites. Have been fortunate to attend some of the top reality shows in the country and my experience has been made vague because all I could see were the negative sides of such event. The advert for the Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (WWTBAM) rolled on both radio and TV medias for months making the public too anxious to be part of it. But by the time the show started, it was turned out to be a bunch of rubbish to the audience. I used N10,000 in sending text to 132 so that I will be a participating audience or one of the contestants but all these to no avail. 3 months into the show, prospective audience were told to come to the Ultima studio in Ojodu to participate by 10.00am on a Saturday Morning. Because of my flair for reality shows I half slept through the night and immediately it was 6:00am I woke up, did my prayer, bath, ate, dressed up and got out for the dazzling event of the day. Getting to the studio around 7:am for a 10:am show, I was shocked at the sight of 300 young men and ladies who came to a studio that could not accommodate more than 120 people at once. By 9:45am, we had about 360-400 able bodied men and women all running towards the same studio. The scene became gory as we all look like troops of soldiers advancing towards an enemy’s’ camp. Since the floor manager told me I could not go in for the show because of my white shirt, I didn't bother to join the crowd instead I hung my head behind a tree while I observed the situation.
The painful part of the WWTBAM is that after the struggling that lasted minutes, the personnel came out to address us that only 120 people with a WWTBAM feedback text will be allowed to participate. Then what will happen to the remaining 280 people that you used trade puff in inviting to the studio? we all became nuisance shouting on top of our voices until the studio entrance was locked and everybody disappeared to his home unconsciously. Ever since then, I vowed never to go back to WWTBAM until Frank Edoho picks up the phone and invite me specially or better still sends his car to pick me up.
As if that was not enough, I saw the advert of the Gulder Ultimate Search IV on the T.V. I registered for the show and fortunately i was invited for screening at Bode Thomas Surulere. In order to perform well, I got a coach to take me through the hurdles of jogging, running and swimming, I spent 2 weeks going for swimming in the Onikan National stadium.
On the d-day of the screening, which was a Tuesday, I was at the centre by 7:30 am while a representative of GUS team addressed us to go make photocopies of our credentials which they never collected.
By 9:30am, the scene turned out to another swam of bees with thousands of bachelor and master degree holders in attendance as if they were in for a job interview. The screening we all thought would be logical turned out to be a test that lack reliability, validity and usability. Instead of a one on one or personal thing, people were grouped in hundreds and sent into a muddy football pitch out of which 10 will be selected. I was unlucky as i was number 13 in my group which led to my eviction without even getting to the swimming stage.
The most annoying part of the event was that the GUS team could not even provide a means of cleaning ourselves after the rigorous jogging which spoiled our joggers and tennis shoes. instead we were ushered out in thousands by the ever militant Mobile Police. Later, the result of the Lagos screening centre could not really be justified as they turned everything to who knows who. No wonder Anthony lost his life during the final preparation in Jos.
I never knew that my promise not to attend any reality show in the country will be short lived as i was invited to Deal or no Deal Nigeria (DOND) by a dear friend. We got to the venue at Ojodu on a Saturday morning by bus that conveyed us from Newest Hall Unilag to be welcomed by 26 most beautiful Nigerian Models out of which we have our own Nairaland little gal (Jane) and my friend Lizzy. The show was intelligently and professionally anchored by John Fashanu a football legend. At the end of the days' show, we were served rice and chicken supplied by Chickens Republic. We were even fortunate to take a lucky deep where I won a long Starcomms umbrella. My urge for reality shows was restored and I promised never to miss any of the DOND series.
At the arrival of the next Saturday, I left my crib early in order to be a front seater. Alas, after the show, nothing order than thank you was said. Though man must not live by bread alone but there should be a reason for a change in plan. It was then that Don Flexi, the audience coordinator addressed us that they have changed their plan from given food to given N1,000 to the first 100 people to arrive. For crying out loud, do they think we Nigerians are money freaked? I was even unlucky to get the N1000 since I was number 115. People departed the studio in a divide and rule platform. While others smiled to the bank, others left with hardened faces.
I never relented in my effort to attend the show the next Saturday. It was then that I saw the true and big picture of reality shows in this country. I got to the venue 6:30am and it could be saddening that as at that time, they have already got there 100 to be paid participants. How come? Did they sleep overnight there? The story became obvious when we could see 60 people that were physically present and 40 ghost participants. That simply means both participants and DOND workers wrote more than one name. Either for there friends or family members, this scenario shows the greediness in us. we are not really concerned about people doing things rightly instead we prefer to circumvent the law. Though the DOND team said it was a 50/50 thing for male and female. how come guys that came late around 10:00am still got their names written on the 1st 100 list while those that came 6:30am were given number 100 and something.
Or should we talk about the MTN VJ search? I cannot really recount how many times I sent VJ to 4000 without getting any feedback though they never forgot to charge me for the text.
This really shows the level of decadence in our society. The planners of reality shows are more interested in their mouths than the thousands of youth they tend to empower. I think its high time we Nigerian youths got empowered and rise to the call that we need to name our prices, get educated, be self reliant and even work smart so that no one will deceive us with a chicken change.
As for me, I have known the truth and it has set me free.
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