BY ADEDIWURA OKELEYE
Kenya had it for seasons one and two, Nigeria had it for seasons three and four but now MTV is taking the Shuga action to South Africa for its fifth season. This announcement was made two days ago in New York by Georgia Arnold.
Prior to the announcement, MTV Shuga boss, Georgia Arnold said, “MTV Shuga is moving to South Africa at a time when HIV prevalence is up to 8 times higher among adolescent girls than among adolescent males (15-19 years old) in South Africa. (UNAIDS 2015). While the total number of AIDS-related deaths in all age groups fell by 35% between 2005 and 2013, AIDS-related deaths in adolescents increased by 50%. (Lancet Commission 2015).”
The next instalment of MTV Shuga, starring South African actress Mohau Mokoatle (who plays Bongi), is due to begin pre-production in September 2016. The latest installment of the series will be funded by South Africa’s Ministry of Basic Education, PEPFAR (The US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), Marie Stopes International and Positive Action.
Shuga is an edutainment series that was first aired in November 2009 on MTV Base as part of an initiative dubbed “MTV Staying Alive Ignite!”. It is a show targeted at African youth to slow down the spread of HIV/AIDS and encourage frequent testing.