At the inception of the first television station (Western Nigeria Television Service — WNTN) in Nigeria in 1959, late Chief Obafemi Awolowo had hoped that the establishment of the TV would serve as a tool for the dissemination of information and education and the provision of entertainment, and perhaps also as a means to stimulate the viewers to strive hard and achieve success in their chosen endeavours.
Some 51 years after the dream, several television stations, both state-owned and private, ones have come up to propagate the noble vision of the late sage and keep television business thriving. Among them is Africa Magic Yoruba, one of the many satellite stations aboard the platform of Digital Satellite Television (DSTV).
However, the new TVC advertising the Yoruba-movies station has left undesirable impressions on the minds of viewers.
A man and his wife meet a marriage counselor to iron out their matrimonial issues. The poor lady complains of idling away all day, saying she would love to have something profitable doing. Mr. Husband would have none of it and prefers she mind the home. The matter degenerates into a disagreement and the problem-solver counsellor in his wisdom suggests she watch Africa Magic Yoruba all day as a panacea to her plight.
Left to a lot of viewers, the proffered solution is rather ridiculous judging by how sensitive the issue is. It goes beyond advertising and marketing here but to the core values of personal and family contribution to societal and economic development of the nation. It also subjugates the woman's right to aspire and achieve something meaningful with her life. Not only that, the TVC reinforces the perceived notion that the African society is too male-dominated much to the chagrin of the female gender. If all women were to sit back and watch Africa Magic all day and night, one wonders where the Akunyilis, the Okonjo-Iwealas, the Sirleaf-Johnsons and the Angela Merkels of this world would be.