Thursday, January 21, 2021

Actress who fronted coronavirus PSAs busted for throwing wild house party

A Nigerian actress who fronted a national campaign about social distancing during the coronavirus lockdown has been arrested — for throwing a wild party packed with revelers, according to police.
Funke Akindele-Bello, 42, fronted a campaign for the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in which she filmed PSAs urging people to remain apart, saying, “Remember, your health is in your hands.”
She sparked outrage last week when video showed her throwing a wild party for her husband’s 43rd birthday — with her Lagos mansion packed with guests dancing and drinking in close proximity.
The apparent hypocrisy sparked numerous online memes, with videos of her PSA spliced together with the packed party.
Lagos State Police on Sunday announced the arrest of the “popular TV sensation”-turned-COVIDIOT.
The force said she was busted for “violating the Stay-at-Home directive and organizing a social event with a large gathering of people which could lead to the spread of Covid-19.”
Officers also arrested singer Naira Marley, one of those filmed at the party, while warning there was a “manhunt for other attendees.”
Akindele-Bello and her husband, Abdulrasheed Bello — a singer known as JJC Skillz — were both charged and found guilty, police said. As well as being sentenced to 14 days’ community service, they were both ordered to make a tour “to educate the public on the consequences of non-compliance of the restriction order,” police said.
The actress later took to Instagram to insist that everyone at the party had been there for “some months before, weeks before, days before the lockdown.”
“Nobody came from their houses to party with us. No,” she claimed, while insisting, “I’m not defending myself. I understand your concerns.”
The NCDC and Dettol, which backed the campaign, socially and otherwise distanced themselves from the actress, removing her PSAs.
“As an organization we are concerned at the turn of events,” Dettol Nigeria tweeted, stressing that it “does not condone any breach of the guidelines on Covid-19.”

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