Big Brother: Is Africa's immorality on display?
5/13/2012 3:30:37 PM -
The current show, the Big Brother Africa StarGame is their 7th season. With every season, the team adds twists in attempt to keep the viewers glued to the screen. The reality show which celebrates its 10th anniversary in May this year has had its share of controversy.
In Uganda, the excitement about the reality show Big Brother Africa seems to reduce with every new housemate that represents Uganda. But still, to date it is hard for someone to talk about Big Brother Africa without mentioning or at least thinking about Gaetano Jjuko Kaggwa -Uganda's representative in the first Big Brother Africa show in 2003.
And who can forget the mob that Kaggwa found waiting for him at the airport and along Entebbe Road on the day he returned to Uganda? It took him 240 minutes to get to the city centre compared to the 45 minutes it takes on average. But his wacky bahaviour and that of his housemates while in the house was criticised.
From then on, so many moralists have spoken out against the show. Some countries like Malawi banned the show though it was over turned and Nigeria threatened to ban it from being aired in their country. And when the heat became too much for the Big Brother team, the show was revised and the shower hour was limited to air late in the night and not as often.
Big Brother Africa is a reality show that lasts 91 days per season. Like expected, when men and women live together, there are cases of attraction that are taken to another level. Also, when there are misunderstandings, people argue and a number do what they do in real life- quarrel without minding their language. Public display of such activities saw moralists come up against the show. So do these activities make Big Brother an immoral show?
Peter Kakembo,31, a bank teller says, 'It is called a reality show for a reason. There is nothing immoral about the Big Brother Africa show because it airs things that happen in real life. The only difference is that it is broadcast. It is like putting a camera in your house. Some people don't mind making their real life a public affair, but that doesn't make them immoral.'
Eddie Ssemakula, 26, a media practioner, says Big Brother Africa is putting African families at a risk of breaking up. 'At first housemates were taken independently but now they are taken as pairs that know each other. When I told my friends this, they laughed, but I think soon they will start taking a whole family into the big brother house.' 'And big brother mainstreams all the things that are anti-Christian,' he adds.
When the show begun, most people assumed that its purpose was to showcase Africa's richness to the world. But with most of the shows famed for smoking, alcoholism, sexual promiscuity, idleness and wasteful feeding habits some people deemed it unfit.
We have seen female housemates drink, smoke, get drunk and strip in front of live television cameras. The male appear with all sorts of hairstyles and tattooed bodies all aspects that are not tolerated in Africa.
But what the show portrays is just how much African culture has been influenced by foreign cultures. It would definitely be helpful if what happens in the house passes on positive values to those watching.
However, we should not forget that it is business for the people behind it and in that world, what comes first is profit. Therefore what sells is what is aired. As you ponder on that, Kyle Duncan Kushaba, 25, Journalist and upcoming artiste and Jannette Georgina Lutaaya 22, a dancer are this year's Uganda housemates. The two are friends apparently with no strings attached and yes they need you to vote for them to stay in the house.