A screengrab from the documentary; when Uncle Susu was answering questions from the BBC team.

By Agbonkhese Oboh

It might not create the storm that followed “Sweet Sweet Codeine” or the cathartic God-catch-them feeling evoked by “Sex for Grades”. But “Racism for sale: The Chinese video-makers exploiting African children”, the latest from BBC African Eye, is no less incisive. It exposes something insidious.

The story started with an outrageous video in 2020.

However, as the investigation progressed, thousands of such video turned up on sites and social media platforms, with the makers raking in good money.

Obviously, the orient, or a certain population of that region, enjoy viewing black children in sub-human conditions and/or in funny displays.

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This quote accompanies the 49:05 minutes long documentary:

‘In February 2020, a shocking video began to circulate on Chinese social media. A group of African children are being instructed, by a voice off-camera, to chant phrases in Chinese.

‘The kids repeat the words with smiles and enthusiasm — but they don’t understand that what they’re being told to say is “I am a black monster and my IQ is low.” The clip ignited outrage in China and beyond.

‘But no one ever answered the crucial questions: Why was this filmed? Where was it shot? Who made it?

‘These questions send #BBCAfricaEye and #BBCEyeInvestigations reporters Runako Celina and Henry Mhango on a journey into a Chinese video-making industry that exploits vulnerable children across the continent.’

So, from analysing the video using every available tool, the team tracked down “Uncle Susu” (as the children call him) to a remote Malawian village.

With evidence stacked against him, he still denies everything — including making ‘Video Zero’.

The poignant documentary ends with the BBC team driving away. Leaving Uncle Susu behind in same village with the exploited children and their parents looking on.

But they know, as the BBC pair stand on a hill overlooking the community, that Susu is just one small fry in a huge industry with fangs all over Africa.

Vanguard Media


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