Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Race Issues in Naija.....


I was reading the post on bella about the Top 30 young Nigerians done by Whats New Magazine. Now Sugerbelly (one of my fave blogs cause she says what am thinking but too politically correct to say!) made a comment about why an Indian lady and a mixed race babe should grace the cover of what is supposed to be celebrating young achieving Nigerians.
Sugerbelly said:
"First of all, for clarity’s sake if you’ve got one Nigerian parent, then yes, you are a national of two nations, Nigeria and whatever the other one might be.
Second, in a country of more than 140 million people, why should a foreigner be the one that ends up on the cover? At the very most she should be tucked away somewhere in the middle pages. We are Nigerians and we want to see other NIGERIANS on the cover of our magazines thank you very much.
Also, in case you don’t realise, the population of caucasoid people in Nigeria is insignificant when compared to the Nigerians. Therefore, they should also be insignificant as far as our media is concerned.

No, I am not being racist. Think about it. There are really no more than a handful of white and semi-white people in Nigeria. (yes, I know there are at least a few hundred but 1. most are in Nigeria on visas of some sort 2. they can never wield any kind of political power 3. they have no say in any of the affairs of the country.
Now, let’s be logical here. Magazines, advertisers, etc, all want to make money, and so they put whoever they think will sell on the cover. This is where the problem lies. LOGICALLY, a sensible magazine editor, advertising agent, blah blah blah would put an interesting, engaging, enterprising Nigerian with brilliant business acumen on the cover because LOGICALLY this would be attractive to most if not all Nigerians that fall within the range of this magazine’s target market.

Now observe the illogicality of this magazine cover. There is an (Indian?) on the cover along with a half-caste girl (who by the way gets a pass by virtue of her Nigerian DNA).
How many Indians are there in Nigeria?
The Indian population in Nigeria is far too small for it to influence Nigerian media in ANY way. A magazine editor with ANY amount of business sense would know this.
At least in America there is an argument for the use of minorities on magazine covers because those minorities have SIZEABLE, and SIGNIFICANT populations that are actually worth marketing to.
Tell me why should a magazine cater to the miniscule handful of Indians in Nigeria while excluding the rest of the population?
What rubbish! This is bloody Nigeria and it is far more important to see Nigerians on covers than any foreigner.
More importantly, why should an Indian get the cover of a Nigerian magazine sold in Nigeria when there are 29 Nigerians to pick from?Why should Nigerians be forced to relate to an Indian as a role model and celebrity?
I don’t know about you but I think What’s New magazine is trying to sell to 140 million people not 140.
No Indian magazine will EVER put a Nigerian on the cover. Hell will freeze over first and we’ll all go iceskating in the Sahara before that happens.
As far as I am concerned, Nigerians FIRST everyone else LAST. ALL countries put their nationals first and treat them better, why not us?Why do we always have to be the self-sacrificing idiots that offer ourselves up to be used as a footstool for anything that even so much as mouths the word ‘foreign’?
I want my baby cousin to grow up seeing successful, amazing NIGERIANS on magazines and on TV and admiring them and wanting to be like them.
I do not want my baby cousin to grow up wanting to be Indian and hating the fact that he is Nigerian because even though he lives in Nigeria and is surrounded by Nigerians that look just like him, the only celebrated people he ever sees in magazines are Indians and white, and Chinese and God knows what else.
Foreigners have been treated like gods in Nigeria for far too long. They are FOREIGNERS. Technically, they should have limited leeway compared to Nigerians but inexplicably it’s the other way around.

Maybe Nigerians should stop lying to ourselves that we are Christians and Muslims and just admit that we worship the great god ‘Non-Nigerian’.
If you do business in Nigeria, then you MUST make EVERY EFFORT to tailor your business to meet OUR needs and OUR wants, and you MUST ensure that you relate to the NIGERIAN experience.

Why should Nigerians spend their hard earned money on a magazine that won’t even deign to put them on the cover? Tell me. WHY SHOULD WE?
The way Nigerians come and defend these ridiculous behaviour you would think that Indian publications are awash with nothing but Nigerian faces.
Excuse me while I laugh - Kpehe Kpehe.

Blank. Fucking. Stare.

Take your black ass to India and see what happens to you.
Stop defending them. This magazine cover is wrong no matter how you look at it. What’s New is not an Indian magazine, it is a Nigerian magazine that operates in Nigeria. If they cannot represent Nigerians on their covers and give Nigerians their most important features and stories then they should shut down and get the fuck out of my country and move to damn India where they can put all the Indians they want on their covers.
After all if they put a Nigerian on Vogue India it would sell maybe one copy at a steep discount.
Please! Give me a damn break. Nigerians FIRST in Nigeria. Everyone else get in line behind the NIGERIANS."
Now what do you guys think? Dya think that we (Nigerians) have a mentality of putting foreigners and mixed race pple ahead of ourselves? I definately think we do, all you have to do is look at the past ten Miss Nigeria and MBGN winners and 9 of them are light skinned or mixed race. All the ads for beauty products and soaps always feature mixed race people as well.
But at the same time, there have been loads of Naija mags with Nigerians on the cover, so does 1 magazine really make a difference? I personally dont think it matters that much but I see how it can be offensive to some people, what d'ya guys think? Leave your comments and let me know what you think!
Miss B
xoxo
P.s-shoutout to Sugerbelly for keeping blogville controversial!!

22 comments:

  1. well said! wtf! some indian girl and a mixed breed gracing an indigenous mag's cover. serzly, i will think more than twice before buying that mag cos the cover implies the mag's content is fake.

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  2. You said it so well, if only people would admit to themselves that they are too scared to be labelled as trouble makers - to actually say whats on their mind. You have said everything that needs to be said.

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  3. True talk my sista. This is how we keep putting ourselves down. Very sad indeed! So you mean no young Nigerian could grace the cover? mschewwwwwww!

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  4. Hi, I saw your comment on my blog. Generally, Nigerians tend to favour foreigners over fellow Nigerians. My problem with this issue is that your country is supposed to be your safe haven, your base but when you (a Nigerian) cannot be guaranteed excellent treatment in your OWN country, then what is left?

    THAT is what I have issues with.

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  5. whoa im diggin' this. I might steal it and site it on my blog haha. Good points though its some BS. check out http://bigtimechill.blogspot.com For chill out material especially after reading this haha.

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  6. well i suppose your intolerance is apparent. if some white american should make the same statement, all hell willl let loose. you feel that you are more nigerian than the 'half caste' because...??? i hope you know that she is as nigerian as they get, just as Obama is as American as they come. Your saying nigerians first, means the the mixed race nigerian is less of a nigerian than you are? i don't understand it. you say light skinned girls have won miss nigeria, so you would have preffered it to be dark skinned girls, to prove what exactly? maybe you shld go be one of the judges, and make ur judgements based on how dark or light the contestants are.
    And regarding the Indian lady, you only have to look at your post before this post, which was wholly dedicated to an indian actress - i suppose as a nigerian blogger, it would do very well for you to promote 'our' own up and coming artistes, rather than foreign (indian) ones who probably don't give a shit about our own actresses. i think this is a clear case of practice what you preach. you can't possibly point fingers at this magazine whilst you do the same on ur blog - it is called pot calling kettle black.

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  7. Mr Anonymous-CHILL OUT! i was merely stating the arguments that had been put forward for and against putting having foreingers on the cover. I personally have NOTHING against it, and like i said if you read the post carefully, there are hundreds of magazines with Nigerians on the cover. But at the same time, I can appreciate other people's arguments against it because Nigerians are bitter about treating ourselves as second best, and as stated you would NEVER find a Nigerian on the cover of an indian magazine no matter how long they stay there or how much they have achieved.

    Also, my blog is not meant to just focus on all things Nigerian as I am open minded. I see nothing wrong with celebrating foreign as well as local talent. But if I was asked to pick an actress for the cover of a magizine, I would pick the BEST, regardless of thier race!
    Thanks for stoppin by though!

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  8. Wow, this post is a joke. What you are saying doesn't even make sense! Is it because they are not Nigerian enough that they should not be on the cover? I can bet that if the people on the cover were some black South Africans or say, black Kenyans YOU would not be saying a damn thing! Let's call a spade a spade. You are not upset about the cover sporting non-Nigerians or unauthentic Nigerians because as I said earlier, if they dark skinned black South Africans would you be beefing? Problaby not. Well, its probably not your fault. You are just reacting in a manner that is the result of the ways Nigerians view other "unauthentic" Nigerians.

    If an American, or Canadian makes such comments I'm pretty sure you would be bitching. I grew up in Canada but have been living in Nigeria for the past 7 yrs now and I can tell you that I have seen many Canadian magazines with foreigners -Blacks, Indians, Asains on the cover. So please one cover is not going to kill any Nigerian person.

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  9. Like i said before I do not have a problem with it, dts just a quote 4rm Sugerbelly! But i disagree with ur point, i think pple would be more pissed if a black person 4rm anoda nationality is on the cover as it is celebrating NIGERIANS, and these girls on d cover are definately nigerian, you guys are missin d point!

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  10. Who is this weird Naija shawty ( such an unlikely name!!) How dare you call another human being who you have never even met a 'half breed'? This is a child of God created in His image! That term is usually refering to a dog, not a human being. The term for people of different races is 'mixed race' or 'dual heritage', please be informed.
    Also, you need to read the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and educate yourself on the definition of a 'Nigerian'.

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  11. I am a product of a mixed race marriage (Nigerian/Irish)living in London.I am horrified that you would republish such an irresponsible post,are you aware of your responsibilty to all your readers?The reason I address your post and sugerbelly is because my friends and I did love and read yours with so much joy.Never again, you have lost our readership for what its worth...
    For heavens sake,in 2009? Come to think of it, how often do Nigerian magazines have Indians on the cover? So few times that the point of this article is not even clear.Why would a very occasional showing of a non Nigerian bring on so much hate? You and your suppoters need to analyse yourselves, are your egos so fragile? All over the world, international magazines of repute display all the wondeful and beautiful colours of His creation.Good bye from at least 7 of your faithful readers.

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  12. Bukky B, i 4kin luv this i wish u were at my crib 1 night 2 help me explain 2 my friend bout a similar issue, God i 4kin luv this, but i aint racist or nothin but i just when real peeps luk at real issues

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  13. Anonymous 9.13, CHILL OUT! you are missing the point of the whole post. Blogging and ultimately journalism is about opening up controversial issues for discussion! i find it disappointing that you cannot accept other people's opinion without getting worked up, I mean there are people who believe in the craziest thing. If you bought a newspaper which published an article you do not agree with, written by somebody else, would you stop reading that newspaper all together???

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  14. Seems some people have a problem reading. Ok here is a simple break down, a magazine is celebrating young and successful Nigerians in Nigeria and out of the thirty, its a fair skinned, half Nigerian/half something else that can grace the cover? Come on now people. Think a little. Lets stop being politically correct.

    We all know for a fact that foreigners are treated better in Nigerian than Nigerians. It's a fact. Cos I do not know why you will pay a high school drop out more money than a college graduate, if it got nothing to do with his/her skin color. Like someone said, this is 2009, lets starts calling things the way they are.

    Talking about young and upwardly moving Nigerians in Nigeria and having a picture of someone that looks Indian is not right.

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  15. obviously yes, one will stop reading that newspaper as you clearly support the rantings of that BIGOT sugabelly. Have you ever thot of what went wrong in sugabelly's life that she hates anybody that is remotely fairskinned or white? she complains if pple have weave or relaxed hair, but feels justified to use hair extensions to braid her hair, because she feel braiding is african, lol! how ridiculous - if she were so PROUD of her natural hair, she will let braid her natural hair, or better still put it in threads for 'protection'. she is a hypocrite and her hatred is apparent. She is suffering from the biggest inferiority complex i have ever come across, and that girl truly HATES herself. I have never come across anyone with so much Angst in my life, ever. you are automatically hated by sugabelly, if per chance you are fair skinned and successful.
    and you my dear miss B unfortunately has been sucked in hook line and sinker. Hence the reason why you will lose ur readers. As for naija shawty, her role in life is to aimlessly support all the jargon on blogsville without having an opinion of her own - people like her suffer from the worst kind of self hate imaginable.

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  16. @mineexclusively, the issue is not about treating foreigners better o! the magazine was talking about nightlife and lagos clubs, and these two women are the top club owners... at the same time the mag was celebrating top 30 nigerians which appeared on the cover of the mag, and people automatically assumed that the indian woman was one of the top thirty.
    however, i'll ask you this question, what if the indian woman has nigerian citizenship, is it fair to discriminate against her 'cos of the colour of her skin and/or her ethnic origins? are we not displaying an alarming level of intolrance? if naija's as a whole, worship foreigners, is it the foreigners fault that they are worshipped? and should they therefore be hated? again if we do not all 'worship' all thing foreign, why are we all happy to be foreign educated? and why does sugabelly speak int hat oh! so phony american accent? isn't she ashamed of the accent she had before exiting the shores of naija? why adopt a foreign accent altogether? 'cos she feels its better than her naija accent. we are all guilty of what she accuses the magazine of. lets call a spade a spade.

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  18. Chai anonymous na wa oh! in supporting ur opinion u are be-littling people left right and center, have you not heared of freedom of speech? if you dont agree with a point, state why you dont and what yours is, there is no need for insults abeg!

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  19. Who the hell buys this stupid magazine? That is one of the reasons they will fail. I am sure it is one those 'foreigners' that publishes this magazine thibking because the likes of Genevieve magazine succeed they are bound to.

    I beg to differ, Nigerians are becoming more aware and I will not buy an insult with my hard earned money. 30 Successful Young Nigerians my arrogantly noir derriere!

    What happened to putting Funke Akindele (Jenifa) or Tara Fela-Dorotoye or Korede of Fusion on the cover? Effing idiots. Like that girl's country would extend that same courtesy to us.

    Sorry for the long comment. I am just enraged. Thanks for this post jare!

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  20. miss b, i can see that i am the only one who has thrown insults. I hope you understand that majority of ur commentators have insulted people they don't know. Can you please call them to order? thank you.

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  21. there's so much fighting on this blog that I dont even know wat to say again. well I hear talk of removing ursef from a blogger's readership, you can always transfer your readership to me but I hope u dont take offence easily. there is sense on both sides of the arguement which is that all nigerians irrespective of their skin colour should be equal however yes some nigerians do suck up to white pple but this are mainly nigerians who are uneducated and not people like us who blog and have access to the internet or lived abroad and work with europeans. for me personally i dont know wat the problem is because even my house mates are europeans and I cant see wat the biff is but I do understand the point of the post because i grew up in nigeria and I had foreign friends and I know wat i saw. but irrespective we must treat each other equal this is Obama era. seriously guys I have this hot article on Wande Coal do read it and ur comments are most welcome.

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