Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Dbanj's Kokomansion and Nigerian womanhood

THE first time I read about HiTV and DBanj's proposed 'Kokomansion' show, I was extremely saddened at the levels to which we are willing to sink in our mad rush for fame, popularity/notoriety and cash! I do not wear the 'feminist' label - indeed, I wear no labels but believe that we should do unto others as we would have them do unto us. A look at the website had me in shock. I was rudely reminded that the expectations men have of women in our society are completely unrealistic and in some cases are reminiscent of what one would expect of a well-behaved pet at home.

Here are some of the things the Kokomaster is looking for in his 'kokolette': She must be able to 'cook sumptuous meals for Dbanj, his friends and family' (sounds like he should simply hire an army of chefs!)_ She must be 'very industrious, yet take care of the home front' (Betty Crocker move over - here comes Ms. 'Kokolette' Superwoman - how many men are very industrious, yet take care of the home front? - many hardly see the kids let alone the home front - puhleeese brother!)_

She must be able to furnish and maintain the 'upkeep of the mansion' (na cleaning service you want abi na 'soulmate'). She must be respectful and courteous at all times (when you meet this paragon of virtue, please introduce us to her - we need to learn this one!). She must be able to emulate 'notable women' in society (like who? Michelle Obama? Queen Amina? Hajia Yar'Adua? Oprah? The late Mrs.Funmilayo Kuti?). She is well cultured with 'sound domestic training' (I wish I could find me a pet with sound domestic training too)! She must have and maintain good moral values (like Dbanj huh?) She is an excellent 'host' (Hammer!) The list goes on.

The 'Kokolette' must be at least 18 years old to apply. Let me ask Dbanj, his producers, the sponsors of this show etc - 'Would you want your (at least) 18-year old daughter, sister, niece or whatever hanging around Dbanj for eight weeks trying to be this 'superwoman cook, cleaner, pet etc?' She stands to win a diamond ring, convertible car and_N5m cash reward... hmmm... in our mentally and pocket-impoverished society, maybe BUT all aspiring Kokolettes remember, diamond rings can get stolen/lost, convertible cars can crash and you can run through N5m faster than you think you can (just ask any lottery winner around) - you're better off focusing on school, your career etc - believe me, if you're good, you'll make far more than that consistently!

The objectives of the show are listed as 'projecting the attributes of a good woman, wife and mother' and helping a single man 'determine what he should be looking for in a woman he intends to marry'! Goodness! And to correct the 'perception of a kokolette being just a party girl to being a truly responsible woman, capable of holding her own both at home and in public' - WOW! This is also an interesting example of how Nigerian society puts women on an impossible pedestal saying how they should be great cooks, great mothers, industrious etc etc, etc while being these amazing hot chicks as well.

The churches, our mothers, aunties, etc. (who have been brainwashed by this nonsense) etc. do not help either with their constant haranguing of women to be 'the ones who make the home' and still bring home the bacon too. We forget that God made the woman to be a helper to man and not for her to be man's superwoman - so what do the men get to do apart from work and make money? Don't they make homes too? I have always admired D'banj and Mr. Toyin Subair's team for the strides they have made in their chosen careers but to see them denigrate womanhood to this level is disheartening - granted, they probably are really doing this in a bid to help 'men know what to look for in a wife', hmm. When are they going to do a show to help 'women know what to look for in a husband' and list all these amazing qualities huh? I, as a woman trying her best to just be a decent human being, plan to boycott the services or goods offered by any company that sponsors this show.