Unless they’re being disingenuous, none of the professionals think what they’re producing is pornographic, but Nigeria’s moral police disagree. Read the comments below articles about these so-called porn movies and if you’re anything like me you will find yourself rolling your eyes in disbelief at the amount of puritanism on display. The furore over sex in Nollywood is partly a reflection of our schizophrenic attitude to sex, one attitude behind closed doors, one when things are out in the open. We are like the conservatives in America, who are the largest consumers of porn but also the loudest voices railing against sex in cinema, and against almost anything to do with sex in general. We know, for instance, that Nigerians rank in the world’s top 5 in Google searches for gay porn, yet we’re among the most vocal in spouting anti-gay sentiments.
Instead of our over the top reactions and hypocrisy, we could be using the issue of sex in cinema to criticise Nollywood’s role in normalising rape culture in Nigeria, or discussing the extremely exploitative ways in which gay people are portrayed in some of these movies. But we would rather claim the moral high ground and pretend that despite being a highly religious country, sex pervades every single aspect of Nigerian society. Thus we are lectured to about the evils of pornography and made to believe that using sex toys means you’re having sex with demonic spouses, while Nigerians frequent strip clubs and support a thriving sex economy. There is a market for porn in Nigeria that has nothing to do with Nollywood. This double consciousness is perfectly illustrated in the fact that AfroCandy saw fit to thank God for the success of her movie, scandalising a few more people in the process.