A report from Nigeria alleges that a million dollars of a poverty fund was used to pay for an appearance of Beyoncé in Bayelsa. While it is not clear if she also chose to lip sync that performance, she was paid, with Jay Z, to appear in 2006 allegedly with money dedicated to help 47% of Bayelsans who live in abject poverty.
The discovery was made after questions were raised about spending money to bring American “reality TV” star Kim Kardashian to the poverty stricken country. (I actually cannot understand why even people in an affluent country would pay anything to see Kim Kardashian). Kardashian was reportedly paid half a million dollars for a 24-hour period. Someone will also have to explain to me why a celebrity known only for conspicuous consumption and extravagance was viewed as the perfect person to bring to impoverished Nigeria. I suppose Kardashian brought comfort to starving Nigerians by showing how she continues to enjoy every possible luxury and excess.
The document in question demands contribution from the government for Beyoncé’s appearance. At the bottom of the letter, then Governor Goodluck Jonathan’s aides note “Release N150,000,000.00 (One hundred and fifty million naira) only to be drawn from the poverty alleviation subhead.” Later, Goodluck Jonathan announced that the concert would show that Nigeria was “not just…HIV/AIDS, conflicts, poverty, kidnapping, strife and riots.” No, if this story is correct, it is about corruption and unspeakable excess by politicians.
Here’s an idea for Beyoncé and Jay Z (who very well might not have known about this alleged pilfering) — give the money back to the poverty program. After all, this appears virtually stolen money from the poor of Nigeria. This is the risk in dealing with countries like Nigeria with rampant and grotesque corruption. Just give the money back so hundreds of thousands of starving families can get the benefits taken from them. I am pretty sure neither Beyoncé nor Jay Z will miss the money, but these families certainly do. Just a thought.
Source: Sahara Reporters