2 February 2019

Nigeria: #BBNaija Hopefuls Defy Downpour to Attend Lagos Audition

It is day two of the 2019 Big Brother Nigeria auditions holding in major Nigerian cities.

Thousands of youth besieged the venues with hopes of being chosen as housemates in the Big Brother Naija House, competing for the ultimate prize.

When PREMIUM TIMES visited D Podium Event Centre, venue of the Lagos auditions on Saturday, the crowd was overwhelming.

As expected, the Lagos venue has been adjudged to have hosted the largest crowd with an estimated 6,000 BBNaija hopefuls on day one (Friday) of the auditions.

An official, who confirmed this to our correspondent at the venue, said a total of 13,000 participants were recorded across the eight Nigerian cities.

Passers-by and onlookers at the Aromire Avenue where the auditions held, compared the audition crowd to typical carnivals and other religious concerts.

Meanwhile, a cross section of the BBNaija hopefuls who wrestled their way into the auditions confirmed to this newspaper that they slept over at the venue to beat the crowd.

On the other hand, another group of persons said they defied the rains and arrived at the venue as early as 5am.

Apparently, punctuality wasn't a criterion as most people who had made it to the place in the wee hours of the morning were still scrambling and fighting to make their way into the audition ground.

It also appeared the organisers, MultiChoice Nigeria, anticipated the turnout and prepared adequately for it as there were private security men, police officers, and LASTMA officials, who were on ground to coordinate vehicular traffic.

Medical officials were also present to manage health issues that may arise.

To however ensure optimum safety, contestants were implored to be orderly and follow on-ground instructions.

While some desperate ones resorted to bribing their way in by paying a token of N5000 to N10, 000 to the security officials, those who couldn't afford such 'luxury' were left frustrated outside.

Several people climbed over the fence and barricades of the event center used for the audition. The chaos caused by the event attracted the attention of the police who had to calm the agitated crowd.

Because the organisers announced that there were no age restrictions, it was an interesting mix.

Most of the people who were auditioned came out expressing their hopelessness and doubt on their chances of scaling through while a few others were optimistic about it.

A cross section of the hopefuls who spoke to this newspaper affirmed that the fame, exposure, and prize of N45m (the organisers say it will be more), is indeed worth fighting for.

Last year's reality show broke all records as Miracle Igbokwe, a certified pilot, won the ultimate prize defeating Cee-cee Nwadiora and Tobi Bakare.


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