The thing about blessers

The culture of 'blessers' and 'sugar daddies' is omnipresent, both here and elsewhere as bling, greed and poverty drive the practice.

10 August 2018 | Art and Entertainment

Recent research by reviews.org, focusing on trends on Google searches indicates that the highest search volume in South Africa are for 'sugar daddy' sites. The research was based on trends in 112 countries and looks at the most 'indulgent' sites searched for.

This may be due to the current economics in the region and world at large and some say that most seem to be looking for relationships where there is monetary benefit.

Namibia appears to be no different.

While the terms 'blesser' and 'sugar daddy' are thrown around in slay queen conversations, concerns are raised about the health risks and the general dangers that come with what some refer to as 'glorified' prostitute behaviour.

The image of the traditional sugar daddy has changed from middle-aged men wearing Omega sandals, half open shirts with a golden chain dancing on the top of their bulging kapundas, to sleek tenderpreneurs in either Louis Vuitton suits or designer tracksuits driving either a black G-wagon or the latest BMW SUV.

Social commentator Ngamane Karuaihe-Upi, also known as Uncle G, in an interview with tjil said that we have damaged societies and this is caused by capitalism. He says society is teaching the youth to get what they want even if it means taking a short cut due to lack of social safety nets.

“If Namibia is to become serious about changing the situation, we will have to have decent free education, healthcare and housing, because if we have all of that, what young person will sleep withan old man for the same things?” he questioned.

A local 'blessee' or 'sugar baby' spoke to tjil on condition of anonymity. She said she has no choice because her parents are very poor and cannot pay her tuitione fees. Her loan application was also not approved she had to find a different way of breaking the poverty cycle.

“I know it is scary and dangerous but the money is worth it. They make you do things and all you can do is cry yourself to sleep, but at least your tuition fees are paid. Many of them understand that I'm doing it for school so when I stress on safety, they go with it,” she said.





The dominating perception is that poverty is driving the 'blesser' culture yet in many cases,this is not true. One girl, who identified herself as Queen, comes from a well-off family but her family's money is not enough for her.

“I like looking and smelling good and being the centre of attention. These men want to give you money because you are beautiful, so why not take it? People know that I have blessers, it's an open secret but it's my business. I live in an apartment where I don't pay rent because they pay for me. Life is good for me, I do medical check-ups every two months and I'm on the pill. We use protection but only sometimes. They pay more when there is no protection.”

Slay queens are identified as young ladies who drive expensive cars, live in certain apartment blocks and wear only imported clothing and shoes. This notion was however denied by Namibian socialites Maria Nepembe and Dillish Mathews who are usually on the controversial side of such habits.

Many believe they are sugar babies.

The two stars said that they have never received any financial assistance from men in exchange for money and that a woman at the end of the day, has the right to fall in love with whomever they want.

“You can never do well and having your own thing going on without people assuming that there's a blesser behind it. It's always women, this women that. How do you know that women aren't the ones blessing men? We are all equipped to work hard and earn our own money,” said Nepembe.

“Women shouldn't engage themselves in relationships that can turn out to be dangerous and unhealthy just for a little slayage, but you are entitled to love whom you want, it's your prerogative. Everyone is going through the economic crisis, it doesn't exempt men. Run your own race,” said Mathews.

Human rights activist Rosa Namises expressed her empathy with girls that are in unloving, cold and exploitative conditions. She recalls sex work being something that was done secretly but now it is being practised at “bus stops in the neighbourhood” and in the open. Namises says this is young girls looking for love and they do this because nobody tells them what is right or wrong. She further said that these girls are at risk in terms of sex as not all of them have the power to demand protection or to even get their money.

“Having girls that are in such relationships tells a story about our society. It means we have abandoned our children instead of guiding them and being there for them. Sleeping with sugar daddies is also sex work. I am hopeful and I'm doing the little I can but it is not enough and we all have a role to play. We need to go back to culture and see how things were done,” she said.

June Shimuoshili

Similar News

 

Oh, what a night!

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

A new record was set and an old myth was busted in what may be described as a first-of-its-kind in the Namibian music industry -...

Jazz festival talent search

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

A call for local artists to take part in this year's Windhoek Jazz Festival that will take place on 3 November has been made. The...

Emcees with sauce

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Emceeing a gig for 13 hours straight is not an easy job for anyone. However, Che Ulenga and NSK did just that this weekend at...

Adora back with a hit

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Being an artist isn't easy. There is a lot of hard work that goes into delivering hit after hit, and year after year too. Occasionally,...

Nama on my stoep

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Namibian comedians seem to be doing the most these days with almost all of them having a gig every other day. One who is preparing...

Remembering Jomolizo

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

This week tjil talked to Antonio, the late Jomolizo's manager about how his death affected him and the plans he has for the late Jomolizo's...

Telling the story through arts

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

This week tjil chats to Isabel Katjavivi who takes a trip down memory lane with her new exhibition.A history that is not fully understood or...

Oh look, it's Wine o'Clock

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Television presenter and founder of Khaitago Lorraine Kondombolo will be joining the world on the movement to celebrate women with the empowerment platform Wine o'Clock....

Suzy Eises to pay tribute to Hugh Masekela

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Join Suzy next weekend for a musical feast as she honours the African jazz legend in the heart of Namibia. Namibian audiences will have an...

Hustle like Paul Da Prince

4 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Paul Da Prince is one the very busy personalities in Namibia. He sings, presents on both TV and radio, does voiceovers, event hosting and so...

Latest News

Cops probe 'murder ­conspiracy'

4 hours ago | Crime

The police say they are investigating allegations that the recent death of a Nigerian professor in Windhoek was not suicide.The family of Dr Ayetuoma Cyril...

Dobberstein new MD for advertising...

4 hours ago | Business

Elizabeth JosephWeathermen & Co recently appointed Nadja Dobberstein as its managing director.Born and raised in Namibia, she is a passionate and driven individual who strives...

Utilising apps to manage and...

4 hours ago | Business

Businesses, regardless of their size or function, should consider utilising applications for agility and efficiency. PowerCom Pty Ltd's CEO, Alisa Amupolo, made these remarks during...

Ondonga mess has festered too...

4 hours ago | Columns

The Ondonga succession issue has been a hot potato for years and there have been lingering fears that the considerable infighting could lead to dangerous...

Third woman killed in the...

4 hours ago | Crime

The Oshikoto police yesterday arrested a 26-year-old man for allegedly murdering his girlfriend.The suspect allegedly hacked Albertina Shipale Sackaria to death with a panga at...

Business Park still in limbo

4 hours ago | Business

A N$19 million tender for the construction of an SME business park at the Omahenene border post in the Omusati Region has suffered another setback.The...

Haukambe’s resilience an Afrox asset

4 hours ago | Business

Michelline Nawatises He is responsible for managing central and northern towns. He joined Afrox in 2013 as an account controller and moved to sales in...

All eyes on Geingob

4 hours ago | International

All eyes are on President Hage Geingob today as he takes over the SADC chairmanship from South African president Cyril Ramaphosa, with the region expecting...

Lands ministry drags feet on...

4 hours ago | Agriculture

While Ombudsman John Walters is still waiting for the master list of resettlement farm beneficiaries - requested more than two months ago - he says...

Load More