Actor Seun Ajayi Addresses Sexual Harassment In Nollywood
Nigerian actor Seun Ajayi has spoken out against sexual harassment in the Nigerian film industry, Nollywood.
In an Instagram video captioned “Sexual harassment in Nollywood! My brothers let’s do better”, Ajayi addresses men on the need to make their female colleagues feel safe to work in the industry.
“This video is addressed to my brothers in the Nollywood industry. I see this a lot and whenever I get the chance, I speak about it.
“You see, it’s very important for us to let women feel safe in their work environment, but the truth is, if we really really check out, we dey mess up. In fact, forgive my French, we dey f**k up.”
The “Hustle” actor also detailed one of his experiences while on set.
“Many times I’ll see male colleagues harass ladies on set. There was one time I was on set and it was so bad and this guy was constantly commenting on this girl’s bum and groping her and everyone told him to stop. I told him to stop several times and he didn’t until he was officially written by the girl’s lawyer.”
Ajayi argued that such behaviour persists because other men do not speak out against it and also because no one in the industry has lost their endorsement for such behaviour.
“I urge you, my brothers, that the next time you see that kind of behaviour… it’s not only rape oh, it’s not only rape. To be inappropriate with your language is harassment, it is sexual harassment.
“The reason why these things are still sliding is because nobody has been arraigned in court for sexual harassment, nobody has lost their endorsement for sexual harassment. It’s coming and we need to be careful, my brothers, we need to be careful. We can’t continue to just act. We have to think before we do it.
Ajayi maintains that cases of sexual harassment are not peculiar to producers “that are preying on the ladies trying to get in the industry”, the actor alleges that it happens in “many shades” in the industry. He also called on producers and directors to intervene if they notice a crew member harassing a woman on set.
“My brother we need to stop this thing. If you do it, stop it and if you see it around you, nip it in the bud. Talk to your guy.”