Johannesburg, Dec 19: South Africa’s well known fast food retailer, Chicken Licken has been asked to pull out their “Big John” as it is alleged to be racist. The ad contains content of a young African prince named Big John who sailed from Africa for adventure and discovered a foreign land with a group of white people who were ready to set sail.
The ad was released in November as part of a series of funny ads Chicken Licken advertising always produce. Clearly some South African did not like the ad and have submitted complaints at the Advertising Regulatory Board (ARB) for the ad to be removed.
Chicken Licken has also submitted its response that an interpretation of the commercial by the consumer is negative. However, their view is the content does in no way, shape or form or seeks to make a mockery of the struggles of colonisation and its effects on Africa and her people.
This follows a complaint made by a South African consumer that the ad makes hilarious jokes of the struggles of the African people against the colonisation by the Europeans in general, and the persecutions suffered at the hands of the Dutch in particular.
The ad translates a narrative that imagine if Africans had discovered Europe and colonised it. On a previous note, Nandos released an ad titled “You People” which was well received.
However chicken Licken noted the initiative to uplift fellow Africans and also stated that if the ad ad is carefully observed it’s narrative is to uplift Africans. Chicken Licken also understands the painfull past and a past that seeked undermine black people and their motive was to show Africa that it can rewrite it’s past of an African narrative.
The ARB says irrespective of the intended translation of the ad, the noted that: “The Directorate recognises that advertising is a powerful tool that influences perceptions. The Respondent has commented that it believes thatˑthis country has all the potential to conquer the world and rewrite history from an African perspective˒. The reality is that the history of colonisation cannot simply be rewritten and that the potential to conquer the world should be portrayed in a positive manner ˊ and not likened to colonisation. The fact that the commercial is far-fetched and over the top does not nullify the potential offence”.
Chicken Licken has since been ordered by the Advertyising Board to remove the ad from all it’s advertising platforms with immediate effect.
By Ziyanda Yono