#BBNaija: Big Brother Nigeria Franchise, Past Winners and the Journey So Far

The Big Brother Nigeria (BBNaija) franchise is one of the few reality television series to win viewers over in the vast reality television landscape successfully.

BBNAIJA All Stars: Meet the housemates of Season 8

This reality TV phenomenon has become an integral part of Nigerian pop culture since its inception, captivating audiences with its drama, suspense, and unfiltered look into the lives of its contestants.

Big Brother Nigeria debuted in 2006, with a format based on the internationally acclaimed television show “Big Brother.” Endemol Shine Group, a Dutch-based production company, is responsible for the original show and its global adaptations, including BBNaija.

The Nigerian version quickly gained traction, and while it was not without controversy, it also enjoyed enormous popularity from the start. The concept of the show is simple yet compelling: a group of diverse individuals known as housemates live together in a specially designed house that is completely cut off from the outside world, while cameras record their every move. They are evicted on a weekly basis, and the last housemate standing wins a grand prize, which usually includes a large cash sum as well as various other perks.

The level of fan engagement generated by the franchise is one of the major factors contributing to its widespread appeal. BBNaija has a massive social media following, with fans actively supporting their favourite housemates and passionately discussing the show’s latest developments.

The show has so far produced 7 winners since its debut, which garnered considerable attention and a devoted fan base while airing on M-Net and DStv Channel 37 from 5 March to 4 June 2006.

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The fame of previous winners frequently begins at Biggie’s house and continues after the show. Some of these winners have not lived up to expectations, as little is known about them after the initial euphoria of their victory, whereas others appear to be doing well.

Housemates from previous seasons will compete for the grand prize of N120 million over the next 70 days in this year’s season 8 ‘All-Stars’ edition, which begins today.

GLAMSQUAD delves into the lives of previous Big Brother Naija winners, focusing on what they are doing and where they are at the moment as part of their post-show journey.

Here are some previous BBNaija winners:

2006 – Katung Aduwak

Katung Aduwak, 43, is from Zonkwa in Kaduna state. He is a scriptwriter, producer, and director, as well as a Political Science graduate.
He was a media panellist at the Harvard Africa Business School Forum and worked as Senior Channel Manager at MTV Base, Senior Creative Director at VIACOM International, and Executive Director at Chocolate City for many years.

He directed a short film titled ‘Not Supposed to Be Here’ in 2020, exposing the conflict between African Americans and the African diaspora.

Aduwak is a reality TV Star Coach at the moment. Who Would Like to Be a Reality TV Star.

2017 ‘See Gobe’ – Efe Money

Efe Money, whose full name is Ejeba Efe Michael, who is from Delta State, won the BBNaija Season 2 ‘See Gobe’ edition.

After winning the BBNaija Show in 2017, Efe, 30, went into music.

He released his first song, ‘Based on Logistics,’ as well as several singles, including “Warri,” in which he featured Olamide Baddo, “Yeba,” “Far Away,” and “I Don Care,” among others.

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However, his music has failed to penetrate the Nigerian music industry, and the fame he enjoyed after winning the show appears to have faded.

Efe revealed in 2018, just a year after winning, that he had only N75,000 left out of the N25 million prize.

2018 ‘Double Wahala’ – Miracle Igbokwe

The winner of the 2018 Season 3 edition, dubbed “Double Wahala,” was Miracle Igbokwe from Imo state.

Miracle was in aviation school prior to the BBNaija show, but he immediately returned to finish his training after winning the grand prize.

In the United States of America, he recently passed his flight instructor exam.

2019 ‘Pepper Dem’ – Lambo

Mercy Eke, also known as Lambo, became the first female housemate to win the BBNaija season 4 show after a battle with the other housemates.

The 32-year-old hails from Imo state. She has built a successful career as a media personality, actress, video vixen, and entrepreneur. She appeared in the Netflix films ‘Shanty Town’ and ‘Fate of Alakada’.

She has worked for a variety of businesses, including Ciroc and Mr.Taxi. Following her victory in 2019, she also launched her clothing line MNM Luxury.

In 2022, she revealed that she had been accused of money laundering.

2020 ‘Lockdown’-Laycon

On November 8, 1993, Olamilekan Agbeleshebioba, also known as Laycon, was born.

The Ogun state native is a Nigerian rapper, singer, songwriter, media personality, and Big Brother Naija season 5 winner.

Following the show, Laycon released his debut album “Shall We Begin,” which was followed two years later by his sophomore album “BIOBA.”

The singer recently announced that he is retiring from music because it is “no longer fun” for him.

In July 2013, the artist received his Master’s degree in International Relations from the University of Portsmouth in the United Kingdom.

2021 ‘Shine Ya Eye’ -WhiteMoney

Hazel Oyeye Onou, also known as Whitemoney, is a 29-year-old entrepreneur who won the Shine Ya Eye reality show. He defeated the other 24 Housemates to take home the N90 million grand prize.

He, like Efe Money and Laycon, dabbled in music and was unimpressive.

His song ‘Selense’ was released in 2022 to critical acclaim, but Netizens advised him to focus on cooking instead.

WhiteMoney recently revealed that his music is not Afrobeat but rather a genre known as “Kumkum’ music.”

2022 ‘Level-Up’-Phyna

Ijeoma Josephine Otabor, Phyna, as she is commonly known, was born on June 2, 1997. She triumphed over 28 other housemates to win the N100 million grand prize.

She has remained a brand influencer and has appeared in several skits. She was also named the ‘Force of Online Sensation’ at the Trendupp award’s third edition.

She was hit with a N100 million lawsuit in July 2023 for a defamatory statement made by fellow Big Brother Housemate Chichi.

Finally, it is safe to say that BBNaija’s franchise future is promising as it continues to captivate viewers season after season. The success of the show has resulted in spin-offs, celebrity editions, and even international versions, extending its reach beyond Nigeria’s borders.

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The Big Brother Nigeria (BBNaija) television series has established itself as a cultural phenomenon, enthralling millions of viewers and capturing the diversity and dynamism of Nigeria. BBNaija has established itself as a reality TV powerhouse and a significant contributor to Nigerian popular culture, thanks to its massive fan base, social media frenzy, and ability to launch careers. As we anticipate the eighth season with bated breath, one thing is certain: BBNaija’s allure and impact will continue to shape the landscape of Nigerian entertainment for years to come.

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