The food conversation in Africa hits a new height as Brand Television Network (BTV), a lifestyle and entertainment television network, takes off with the African Jollof Rice Challenge, a continental lifestyle and entertainment taste tour and cooking contest that seeks to discover the country that cooks the best Jollof Rice in Africa.
The contest will have representatives of different African countries slug it out and, at the end, the winner will go home with a sum of $5000.
According to Felix King, an Executive Producer at BTV, the argument on which country has the best Jollof Rice in Nigeria inspired social network and street conversations across Africa, especially among the West African Countries, where Jollof Rice is most popular. This argument has grown into a very strong continental debate, which has dominated both conventional and social media spaces.
This debate sprang up from a statement by Lai Muhammed, Nigeriaâ€™s Minister of Information and Culture that, â€œSenegalese Jollof Rice is the best and a counter claim by our Vice-President, Yemi Osibajo that, â€œWe all know that Nigerian Jollof Rice is the best anywhere. We beat the Ghanaians and Senegalese handsdown.â€
Since then, Jollof Rice lovers have taken to all media platforms to present their perspectives on which countryâ€™s Jollof Rice is the best in Africa. The argument gets fiercer with each passing day with claims and counter claims on which country actually has the best Jollof Rice in Africa.
King said, â€œThere is no official position yet on which country has the best Jollof Rice in Africa, hence, BTVâ€™s desire to unravel the mystery through this contest.â€
None of the perspectives has proved convincing, despite Nigeriaâ€™s strong claims to the African cuisine. The different viewpoints on the streets have only generated more controversies and continuous placement of different points to back up individual claims,â€ the BTV Executive Director said.
Ororo Pattaya Otono, an Executive Producer with BTV said the challenge would start with an online recipe contest, where the best contestants will be selected for the live screening and then the Grand Finale. He said the programme would come to a flourishing end at the Reward Night that will be used to mark the World Jollof Rice Day on Tuesday, August 22.