News Brief

The British Airways Hostess Who Went On a Vulgar Racist Rant Has Been Fired

A British Airways employee who posted a video on Snapchat of her mocking Nigerian passengers has now been sacked.

A British Airways flight attendant who came under fire yesterday for posting a derogatory video showing her mocking Nigerians and making vulgar remarks about the size of Nigerian men's genitalia has now been fired, reports Daily Mail.

In a series of videos posted on Snapchat on Friday, Joanne Wickenden, a 23-year-old hostess and aspiring actress, can be heard complaining about Nigerian passengers asking for upgrades. "All the Nigerians are gonna be there like "gimme Coca Cola, gimme me beef, why you have no beef left? I want beef'," she said using a much Nigerian accent. She proceeded to make crass jokes about male body parts, claiming that Nigerians would ask for more leg room to accommodate oversized genitalia.

Wickenden is now claiming that the rant was a joke, and that she was provoked by her coworkers."I have been framed by another BA employee. They were encouraging me, egging me on to say things. They were recording me and sent it around to our friends," she told the Daily Mail. "I am not a racist."

Her claims of innocence did not stop the airline from sacking the hostess this morning, confirming that "she no longer works for British Airways."

"We expect the utmost professionalism from our staff when they are representing British Airways," said the airline in a statement on Tuesday. "We will not tolerate offensive comments about our customers and will always take the appropriate action."

Several folks have reacted to the crude and racially insensitive video on social media on Tuesday.

While we've seen airlines ignore such incidents in the past, we're glad that, at least time around, action was taken. Good luck with your acting career, Wickenden—or not.

Art
Image courtesy of Peintre Obou.

Ivorian Artist Peintre Obou Speaks on Expression Through His Masked Characters

Peintre Obou talks about how he came to be an artist, his fervour for the mask, and his uplifting project, 'Abobo E Zo'.

Gbais Obou Yves Fredy better known as Peintre Obou is an Ivorian artist whose work is centered around the political-military crisis in his home. To date, his career has been an exploration of his passion for the human condition and the traumas he has experienced as a result of human-orchestrated disasters. He goes as far as highlighting life in the slums and the individuals who opened their arms to him in the lowly communes of Abidjan. He distinctively distorts the faces of his subjects with masks and places vibrant colors upon their bodies as he weaves tales of war, trauma, suffering, and oppression.

Last summer, the Ivorian commune of Abobo underwent renovation in a project titled, Abobo E Zo commissioned by the Minister Hamed Bakayoko. Not only were downtrodden areas within the community rehabilitated and sanitized but multiple buildings around the populous commune were painted to the delight of residents. It was street art set on enlightening a disadvantaged community piloted by Obou with help from hundreds of crafty volunteers.

This interview was conducted in French and has been translated and edited for length and clarity.

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