Television reality shows have sunk to a new low.
A program in the southern African nation of Zambia allows prostitutes to find husbands through TV.
Muvi TV, which sponsors the “Ready for Marriage” show, features eighteen sex workers who are competing for a $9,000 cash prize and a chance to have their wedding paid for.
We want to make a difference to women's lives. These are people, after all, a spokesperson for the TV channel, Coreena Paulina, told BBC.
The contestants were found across the country – most of them are single women with children desperate for money.
I needed to sustain my living and that of my [two] children, one of the prostitutes, Precious Kawainga, 28, told BBC.
Another contestant explained: I found prostitution because of rejection. The father to my children turned his back on me.”
According to Muvi TV, contestants who fail to win the top prize (by being voted out by viewers) will receive consolation prizes valued at between $1,000 and $1,500. In addition, they will receive full-time jobs.
Amazingly, the show has stirred no protests. In fact, at least one clergyman extended his support to its aims.
Reverend Jeff Musonda told BBC: If those people have transformed and stopped their acts, I find no problem. But if it's just for wooing viewership, I would have reservations.”