As the world commemorates the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, the ONE Campaign, today, announced that Melvin Oduah from Nigeria has won the African Union (AU) video competition that housemates of Big Brother Africa: The Chase participated in during this year’s Charity Week. Melvin’s video calls on the AU and African governments to end energy poverty on the continent.
The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is observed on 17 October every year, following a 1993 United Nations General Assembly resolution that designated the day to promote awareness of the need to eradicate poverty and destitution in all countries. Melvin’s message follows a collaboration between Big Brother Africa and ONE during the show’s charity week, which took place from 5th – 9th of August 2013. As part of the week, housemates undertook a series of tasks centered on educating viewers about the most pressing poverty issues facing the continent, while highlighting possible solutions. Each housemate also taped a short video message calling on the AU to do more to address the problem. Viewers then voted on the best video using Big Brother Africa’s online platform.
A total of 82,474 Big Brother Africa viewers from across Africa participated in the voting where Melvin emerged the winner with 42,170 votes representing 51% of the vote. Commenting on the video, Dr. Sipho S. Moyo, ONE’s Africa Director said : “ONE is grateful to Mnet and the BBA housemates for highlighting the critical poverty issues affecting the world in the BBA house during the charity week. The dedication and commitment they showed will, without doubt, inspire millions of their viewers to join the fight against extreme poverty. Melvin’s message supports this year’s call to action for International Day for the Eradication of Poverty which is to raise awareness of the fight against poverty and the need to accelerate action to achieve the MDGs. It is, therefore, exciting to have African youth taking a lead on continental issues and to have the AU and the world listen.”
Reacting to the news, Melvin, who was present at the function, said he was elated that his video was chosen as the one to be presented to the AU, but said that he will only have a sense of fulfillment when he sees the demands being put into action. “During Charity Week I was surprised to learn that, not only can extreme poverty be virtually eliminated, but we can actually do it by 2030 if we get our priorities right. This is why I am excited to do my part, by personally making this call on the AU to do more to eradicate extreme poverty. I hope others will join the movement by becoming a member of ONE,” he said.
Melvin’s video highlights the problem of energy poverty, which affects 70% of the 589 million citizens in sub-Saharan Africa. This severely hampers life-saving hospital services, job and educational opportunities, agricultural production as well the safety and security of women and girls. Energy poverty is just one of the pressing issues for which ONE is campaigning in the fight to end extreme poverty in Africa.
About The Winner, Big Brother Africa & ONE
Melvin is and actor, model and presenter from Delta State, Nigeria. He was born into the family of Mr. & Mrs. Johnny Oduah Melvin has a twin sister, and his two, younger siblings also happen to be twins. The winner holds a BSc in Chemistry from the University of Port-Harcourt. He did his secondary education at the Lagos State Model College Kankon, Badagry, Lagos.
Melvin is a multi-talented youth with several awards to his credit including the Nigerian Model Achievers Awards (NMAA) most promising model of the year as well as TAVA awards for his role in a sitcom, Happy Family. He enjoys listening to Nicki Minaj, Rick Ross and R Kelly.
Season 8 of Big Brother Africa, The biggest reality show in Africa, was dramatically titled The Chase: 28 housemates from 14 countries chased after the US$300,000 cash prize, which was won by Namibian Dillish Mathews. For 91 days, Africa’s biggest reality series screened live 24/7 on DStv channels 197 and 198 while GOtv audiences were able to see highlights. Namibian Dillish won he prize oney at the “Grande finale” which took place on 30th August 2013.
ONE is a campaigning and advocacy organization of more than 3 million people taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. Co-founded by Bono and strictly non-partisan, we raise public awareness and work with political leaders to combat AIDS and preventable diseases, increase investments in agriculture and nutrition, and demand greater transparency in poverty-fighting programs.
ONE is not a grant-making organization and does not solicit funding from the public or receive government funding. ONE is funded almost entirely by a handful of philanthropists and foundations. We achieve change through advocacy. Our teams in Washington, D.C., London, Johannesburg, Brussels, Berlin, and Paris educate and lobby governments to shape policy solutions that save and improve millions of lives. To learn more, go to.
Visit the Website.