Organizers of Miss Diva Awards have explained why they are honouring embattled ex-beauty queen, Chidinma Okeke, despite her alleged involvement in a series of sex tapes which have been buzzing the internet for weeks now.
“Chidinma didn’t have to meet any criteria to receive this award. It was solely the decision of the brand to honour her,” Chijioke “Mr. Decency” Awugosi, project coordinator of DIVA Queens award, said.
“We are aware of the controversy that will come with it. But we hope that in due time, every well-meaning and reasonable individual will see the reasons behind the award.”
Trouble started for Ms. Okeke, the former Miss Anambra 2015 who hails from Orumba North in Anambra State, when earlier in October, sex videos were leaked on the internet appearing to show her in a racy scene with a fellow model identified as Adaobi Nzekwe who also doubles as her personal assistant.
At first, she vehemently denied being involved in the video, claiming her face was superimposed.
However, she slipped into new depths when a second video was released showing the ex-beauty and her P.A. in a more sordid scene, inserting a full cucumber fruit into their private parts.
Vanguard newspaper reported penultimate weekend that a third one-hour long sex tape featuring the disgraced former beauty queen and that is much more graphic than the first two snippets was about to hit the internet. The report also cited a source who said the tapes had been released in retribution for Ms. Okeke not holding up her end of a deal with an unnamed “chief”.
This person reportedly invested money on the pageant organisers to ensure that Miss. Okeke would win and then also spent money for her makeup and wardrobe. The deal also stipulated that the unnamed donor would receive the proceeds she made from her reign as Miss Anambra, but Ms. Okeke allegedly reneged on the deal.
Mr. Chijioke, also said the award’s organisers were supporting the ex-beauty queen to curb the exploitation of young girls by the “high and mighty” in the modelling industry, who allegedly use blackmail to tarnish the image and dreams of young girls and bring the modelling industry as a whole into disrepute.
“We chose to stand with Chidinma right till the very end. We’ll give her every support we have at our disposal; morally, psychologically, legally. She is an icon and through her we can reach out to thousands of girls who have or are on the verge of being sexually exploited. It is a civilized world, we shouldn’t be so judgmental,” he said.
Meanwhile, the decision to honour Chidinma has drawn both criticism and applause on the social media.
While some found it disgusting to honour her, others were of the view that she should be shown concern whether she committed the act or not so as to avoid a case of her being forced to suicide.
“I never wanted to talk about this issue on my wall but this is getting stupid by the day. How can you give an award to a lesbian instead of following the law which states how many years imprisonment she should face,” Embo Ems, a Facebook user wrote.
Other supporters pledged their support on all social media networks with the hashtag #istandwithChidimma.
However, the implications of this scandal for Chidinma are growing direr. After losing her title, the former Miss Anambra was also condemned by Anambra Broadcasting Service (ABS), the organizers of the pageant.
In a recent development, The National Coordinator of the Association for Universal Moral Education Nigeria, Therese Nwodo, blamed failed parenting for the alleged sex scandal.
The Catholic sister called on the Nigerian public not to traumatize the beauty queen the more by dramatizing her situation but to offer her psychological and spiritual succor to overcome the crisis.
“The lesbianism story about the beauty queen is unfortunate; it is symptomatic of what is going on in the society now. Our values have gone down; parents are no longer available to teach their children what is socially acceptable”, she told News Agency of Nigeria.
In a lengthy post on Facebook, the embattled ex-beauty queen said she feared she would be shot at a press conference she scheduled to talk about the scandal.
Nigeria is one of 38 African countries making up about 70 percent of the continent that have passed anti-gay legislation in one form or another.