Written By: Ephraim Percy Kenyanito
Countries: Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.
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Campus Divas For Rich Men is a Facebook page dedicated to hooking up female Kenyan university students under the age of 26 with rich men of any age. The page has used the slogan “Money can buy us.”
After receiving coverage on Kenya’s radio stations such as Kiss 100, Hot 96 and Classic 105 as well as exclusive coverage by Standard Newspaper, Daily Nation and Kenya’s KTN and K24 television stations; netizens created the following hashtags to discuss the Facebook page and share their opinions about it: #campusdivasforirchmen, #HakunaKituUtafanya (there is nothing to do), #CandidatesBetterThanRomney, #TeamMafisi [teamhyena], #wordszawazito [wordoftherich], #Kiss100 and #KOT.
Picture of Facebook Page of Campus Divas for Rich men. Photo by asselo.wordpress.com
Other netizens took to their blogs and YouTube to either condemn or support this bold move in a predominantly conservative society. The debate about the page has brought up issue such as social media monitoring, HIV/AIDS, religion and African customs, opportunities for Kenyan youth, poverty, greed and peer pressure among Kenyan university students.
According to Kenyaforum:
The page which was created on 3rd July 2012, has already garnered 50,684 ‘likes’ with 65,830 visitors talking about it.
Kenyanlist, a Kenyan blogger, points out that:
It had been thought that the pictures posted by the administrator are random internet images, but Kiss 100 callers yesterday confirmed that they recognize some of those girls as their friends.
But Solomonirush says that the page is all but a ploy by some canny netizens to take advantage of young Kenyan students. The blogger reports:
My investigations reveal that this page, and probably others of the same kind, is administrated by canny people seeking to make money. They organize unions, by connecting the rich men to the campus girls and charge some fee for them to give contacts. I have also seen other pages where dating and sex is the subject of concern, and due to the high number of likes by the audience, they charge to do advertisements on the page. The cunning administrators expose the young students, who are willing to adventure, into perils of sexual abuse, sexually transmitted diseases, and kidnapping.
A Kenyan blogger, Kenya-post, reports:
The second group, Anti-Campus Divas for Rich Men operates on contrary principles of the first one. As the first preaches sex, sex, sex and cash, it promotes chastity and encourages young people to abstain. Whereas the first group rides high with over 20,000 likes in there Facebook page, the Anti- Campus Divas for Rich Men only has 5,000.
A number of Kenyans on Twitter have condemned hypocrisy over their reactions and stated that Kenyans need to vote for leaders who will increase the Higher Education Loans Board Allowance for less well off partners to be able to date the girls:
@clansewe: To all Kenyans railing against the ‘Campus Divas for Rich Men” page, stop your hypocrisy. We all Kenyans have put cash above everything!
@kevoice: We will vote 4 leaders who will increase the HELB [Higher Education Loans Board Allowance] allowance so that we can be able to date Campus Divas 4 Rich Men. #TujipangeKisiasa [let’s organise ourselves politically]
@mwendembae: “@lionsroar101 So now there is a fb page called “anti-campus divas for rich men”. Ha, I’m amused.”was bound to happen #idlers
The YouTube video below is an animation created as a reaction to the on-going debate about the page. It was created by moses otieno who advises campus girls that life is supposed to be experienced in phases and it is foolish to attempt to live through all those phases at once:
These views were echoed by netizens who tweeted their disapproval of the page:
@thatguydavy: Campus divas for rich men……and you wonder why hurricanes are named after women!
@mpalele: The sad part abt this Campus Divas for Rich Men is that they think 50K , coffee java and a trip 2 naivasha is the definition of a rich man.
@rmresh: Campus Divas For Rich Men….desparation at its best….
@nochiel: @savvykenya Please be warned that the abhorrent “Campus Divas For Rich Men” page is using your old profile pic
KTN Kenya, a television station in Kenya, used the YouTube platform to portray the Facebook page as a prostitution ring and campus students interviewed say that this is nothing out of the ordinary:
Campus Divas For Rich Men is so far the boldest move in discussing matters involving Kenyan youth and sexuality openly in such a traditionally conservative society.
This article was originally published on Ephraim’s professional page on Global Voices Online.