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Minister Warns Advertisers, Nivea   
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Mustapha Hamid
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Minister of Information, Mustapha Hamid, has cautioned management of Nivea, a body lotion manufacturing company and advertisers in Ghana, not to alter the Ghanaian and African culture through their advertisements.

Mr Hamid disclosed this at the 11th edition of the ‘Gong Gong Awards of the Advertising Association of Ghana (AAG) on Saturday, October 28, 2017, in Accra.

He gave the warning in response to a recent advertisement by management of Nivea in which black women were encouraged to patronize a particular Nivea brand to make their skin appear “visibly fairer.”

Nivea ‘visibly fairer skin’ billboard in Accra has ignited a social media debate in recent times.

A social media campaign was launched in which African women posted selfies next to the Nivea billboard with the hash tags: #NiveaTakeItDown and #ILoveMYShadeofBrown.

Black women affirmed they love their various shades of brown skin and asked Nivea to pull down what was widely considered a racist and deeply offensive billboard.

The Minister, making reference to the advertisement said, “I am sure you saw the outrage at some products that said you should patronize it so you can have a fairer skin. In my view, that outrage was justified because we cannot also put out advertising that seeks to alter who we are. Our uniqueness as Africans and Ghanaians is important if we want to play ball in the global world.”

Nivea has denied reports that the adverts were aimed at demeaning persons with black skin.

But Mr. Hamid said with the changing media landscape in Ghana which has made things more complex, the best way out for advertising agencies was to be more strategic rather display mediocrity or attempt to alter cultures.

The Gong Gong award is organized annually to demonstrate the contribution of advertising to business and reward creativity and strategic thinking that have been developed locally.

This year’s awards, held under the theme: “Advertising as Agent of Social Change,” covered works produced between January and December, 2016.

Some of the awardees included Resultz, Innova DDB, Insel Communication, Ogilvy & Mather, among others.
Source: Daily Guide

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