Big Brother Africa

Big Brother Amplified: Karen looks good for the money

•Sharon O, Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Karen , Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Lonwe , Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Vina

Though most Nigerians hated her guts and called her all sorts of names. They said she represented the country in the Big Brother Amplified (BBA) reality show for all the wrong reasons just because she chose to be herself which, interestingly, is the essence of Big Brother all over the world.

But interestingly, while her country men and women proved her biggest critics, viewers from other lands adored her; they cheered and applauded all her actions and mannerism in the house. And today, Karen’s   ‘wrong’ actions have propelled her to the last lap of the show and except God says no, which some of us pray He does not (after all, the good book has made it abundantly clear the ways of man is not that of God) Karen will become an instant millionaire later today to the shame or is it the surprise of all those who had wished for her eviction from the show.

And if she grabs the whopping $200,000 grand prize, she will become the third Nigerian, in a roll, to have become millionaires courtesy of Mnet and its Big Brother TV reality show.

The first Nigerian to win the $200,000 which is usually at stake was Kevin Pam; he won in 2009 edition. His pioneering feat was repeated by Uti Nwachukwu who smiled home to Nigeria in 2010 from South Africa with $200,000 when he was declared the winner of Big Brother All Stars.

And if she emerges one of the winners, (there will be two winners) of the grand prize as the odds are strongly stacked in her favour, the life of the young lady, who made headlines news back here in Nigeria on account of her heavily enhanced breasts and outspoken nature would never be the same again.

Her holier than thou critics failed to realise that in a reality show like BBA that has life changing monetary prize at stake, every contestants and in this case, housemates, come into the show armed with strategy on her to outwit each other to win the money involved.

Karen had it in abundance, ranging from her ‘plastic’ boobs which she flaunted (after all, they say if you have it, flaunt it) and which made her the cynosure of viewers’ eyes that fateful day the host of the show, IK, ushered her into the Big Brother’s house.

Today, all that ‘immoral’ acts she exhibited has paid off for her; she has, together with Vina, another Nigerian, zoomed into the final and not only that, she, going by the comments of viewers and even some musicians that have performed at the weekly eviction shows, is been tipped as the first choice winner.

Aside her ‘what you see is what you get’ strategy, other qualities that endeared her to viewers across Africa and beyond is her large heart and compassion for others. She is simply compassionate to a fault. Otherwise, how else can one describe what she did the week she was appointed the head of the house (HoH). A HoH, is at liberty to save one person out of the housemates nominated for eviction. Interestingly, she was nominated for eviction the week she was appointed the HoH and viewers had expected that she will replace herself with someone else.

Karen declined benefit from that power vested on her; instead she told Big Brother that she will rather get evicted than save herself by nominating a housemate that was not initially nominated for eviction.

“If I do that, I will be blocking the chances of that housemate from winning the money at stake. All of us need the money and I will not be a party to denying another person the chance of getting the money. I will go for the eviction,” she told Big Brother in the Diary Room.

Truly, she went through the rigours of   the eviction and survived; what a high popularity test risk! That singular act earned her more followership among viewers and fellow housemates; it also shored up Nigeria’s image as a country whose citizens have imbibed its big brother foreign policy.

It is also on record that 27 years old Karen is one of the few housemates that were not nominated more than twice for eviction all through the duration of the show.

Like Pam, Karen is a ‘Josite’; she was born in Jos, the capital of Plateau State.

Unemployed before going into the Big Brother House, Karen lists her mother as her role model. She likes people who are similar to her: fun and happy, and dislikes people who are boring, fake and dishonest.

Karen relaxes by “chilling with friends” and said she would love to visit Spain because “it is sunny, beautiful and exotic”.

However, Karen is not the only Nigerian in the final. There is Vina, 26, from Lagos who before her entry into the house was a radio presenter.

Vina, describes her personality as “amplified” and dislikes people who are lazy, unfriendly and think they are better than others and promised to be outrageous. A promise she never kept because, apart from her funny hairstyle, there has been nothing outrageous about her time in the house.

But despite the contribution of the reality show in turning jobless Nigerians into employers’ of labour, some hypocritical Nigerians still do not see anything good in the show. Some of the drastic changes or transformation the show has undergone in the areas of shower hour, liquor in the house et al is as a result of outcry from Nigerians. It was only in Nigeria that members of the House of Representatives wasted valuable time debating the issue of shower hour in the house instead of focusing on the more important issue of making good laws that will reduce poverty and unemployment that has turned youths into devil’s workshop.

Arguably the most successful season of Big Brother yet, Big Brother Amplified has been jam-packed with entertainment, drama and non-stop action from the moment the 26 housemates met on Sunday May 1.  Triumphs and tantrums, romance and rivalry, friendships and feuds, the housemates have laughed, cried, bonded, argued and danced their way through a 91-day reality TV adventure, screened live continent-wide on DStv channel 198!

In addition to the finale including the biggest prize in the history of the show, it will also welcome the talents of six of Africa’s hottest performers – the incredible Fally Ipupa from the DRC,  Nigeria’s sensational WizKid and Mo’Cheddah, South Africa’s Professor and Speedy, plus Tanzania’s Cpwaa. Joining them on stage will be all the previously evicted Big Brother Amplified housemates and the Big Brother Amplified dance crew, whose fast routines and smooth dance moves have won the hearts of fans continent-wide.

“We’re going all out to amplify the finale!” says M-Net Africa Managing Director, Biola Alabi.  “In addition to these great performers, there’s going to be one really magic moment when it becomes clear to the final housemates that this year, there are two prizes.  We know, our audiences know but the housemates competing for the big prize don’t know this as yet – and I can only imagine their shock and delight when they find out that there are two prizes of USD 200 000!”

Meanwhile, according to M-Net Africa,  the current season of Big Brother Amplified has already set new records for voting, thanks to ongoing audience participation.  Last week, over 1.4 million votes were logged, the highest of any Big Brother Africa voting period. In addition, this current season has already achieved the highest cumulative total of any Big Brother edition, a total of 6.3 million votes. With voting for the final now well underway, total vote numbers look set for a new record.

So with just a few hours to go, Nigerians are encouraged to vote for Karen and Vina as only your votes can decide which two winners go home with the big prizes!

Others in the race for the money are – Hanni ( Ethiopia ), Lomwe ( Malawi ), Luclay ( South Africa ), Sharon O ( Uganda ),  and Wendall (Zimbabwe).

Anthony-Claret Onwutalobi
Anthony-Claret Onwutalobi
Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC and CEO of Portia Web Solutions. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.

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