By: Ify Onyekwere
Osasu Igbinedion, Chief Executive Officer of TOS TELEVISION Network, a Pan African News Network focused on propagating news in Africa on business, development, politics and tourism has called on women of the press to stand their grounds and be a voice.
Delivering her keynote address in a zoom meeting titled “Exploring Underrepresentation and misinterpretation of women in Nigeria media”, she commended the Bill and Melinda gate foundation for the support they have given to Hive as she opines that the workflow of Hive has been impactful and most importantly measurable.
While expressing her delight on the subject matter of the meeting, Osasu who is well known for the Osasu show questioned the capacity to which women who make the News are talked about and the perspective stories around women newsmakers are told. She stated that women are underrepresented and misinterpreted in media today due to social and cultural views that glorify patriarchy.
Making reference to a published story that reveals that over half of Nigerian men and women believe that it is acceptable for a man to beat his wife, the CEO, noted that it is therefore not surprising when the media is nonchalant about reporting issues on domestic violence and other injustice faced by women.
In her words, “when abnormality becomes a norm, the norm becomes an abnormality. We have become desensitized to the abnormality of killing, abnormality of rape, abnormality of incest, abnormality of gender-based violence, the abnormality of gender inequality. In other to keep our sanity, we are advised to mind our business, not to interfere, to accept that we live in a man’s world and we are just a supporting character.”
Osasu shared that after a year when she had obtained her television license from the National Broadcast Commission, two months to the launch of TOS TV Network, two of the top media giants reached out to her to work with them and willing to pay any price to the deal. Stating that she politely declined and informed one of the two of her intentions, he paused for a minute and kept asking her if she was sure.
“I could feel the undertone of his “are you sure” question. I have been hearing this question while growing up even until now. The “are you sure” question was sent to me anytime I wanted to embark on an ambitious task but I realized that this same question was not thrown to my brothers when they dream but rather they were encouraged to dream bigger” she buttressed.
The multi-talented CEO who is also the founder of The Osasu Show Foundation noted that she would have been unable to shine light on great women who risk their lives in villages if she stopped. Encouraging women of the press, she said unless they wake to the lead, patriarchy will continue to be the order of the day.
As against all odds, TOS TV Network boss said she refused to quit even when she was deliberately sidelined for being young and female but she explained that her inability to take No for an answer, her tenacity, her resilience, her work ethic added to her standing up and strong.
While rounding off, Ms Osasu detailed that she was paving way for other women and youth to assume great positions where they too can question unbalanced status cos.