BBN THE DISTRACTION: The Nigerian Youth Dilemma

‘’Big question, how do we get the youth to replicate the energy they have for Big Brother Nigeria?’’

Year in year out the new season of the popular reality show BBNAIJA makes its way into our television screen and other digital devices that we can stream it on. The passion, massive followership, stanship, fandom and entertainment.

The arguments from older generation are always around how the youths are wasting time, diverting their energy into a moral degrading platform and the religious leaders are not left out of the bashing. The need to remind the youths of the burning furnace that awaits them for watching a demonic show and the constant call for banning the show from a section of the country yearly has never deterred the organizers from going ahead to up the stakes yearly to bring the show to life.

Politicians will clamor for the youths to be more active in politics and channel same energy to being politically proactive and show interest in political activities that will affect their lives. This argument is usually followed by counter argument that nothing will change. The youths will rather take their temporary reprieve from what is giving them joy. The pessimism spirit is at an all time high if you think about the outcome of ENDSARS a movement that led to death of many youths a tragedy that till date, the government is yet to take responsibility for and keeps denying its occurrence. How then do you get the youths to turn off BBN and focus on nation building?

Soldier go, soldier come barrack go remain Is the popular saying. BBN will come and go but what will forever remain is Nigeria. How then do we convince a generation of unbelievers that they can effect change even when the indices says otherwise? JAPA is not just a word or slang they bandy around anymore. There is genuine mass exodus of Nigerian youths migrating to every corner of the globe daily. Simply put, the Nigerian youth have lost faith in the system and see looking in from outside as the only option.

The show will end this week and the focus will have to shift to something else. What is guaranteed is, Nigerian youths will not turn to the idea of nation building. It will be trends about celebrities, events, fashion and another reality show may even replace BBN. How do we get the youths to be interested in Nigeria enough to want to change it and have discussions on how to have a better Nigeria instead of deliberately embracing distractions whilst planning an escape route? Rest in peace to sound sultan who reminded us that ‘ajo o le dabi ile’ that is, no matter where you go, home will always be incomparable to another settlement. Social media in many ways is serving the current generation well but it can not be disputed that it is also serving as a disconnect between reality and mere wishes. The oppressors know this and they have weaponized it to their advantage. It is a carrot and stick approach which has worked well and will still work if we don’t pause, address issues and seek alternatives to correcting what is now the norm. Big question, how do we get the youth to replicate the energy they have for BBN to Nigeria?

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  • Kofoworola Kayode