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Nigerian Women in Entertainment with Recent International Recognition

Written By Funke Oshin

Nigeria is Africa's most populous country, with recognitions in various industries, businesses and spheres. This popular culture has in no doubt placed the country in a high stance globally.

Nigerian Entertainment has become the most reckoned with entertainment sector in the world with Nigeria’s film industry, Nollywood, occupying  the second-largest film industry in the world in terms of volume. The music industry has also been gaining ample recognitions globally as Nigerian Artiste have been gathering international awards nominations, wins and collaborations.

Today, I will be putting my spotlight on Nigerian female Entertainers who have gained international recognitions in the year 2020.


Kiki Mordi is an award-winning Nigerian journalist, media personality, filmmaker and writer, who recently got nominated for the 2020 Emmy Awards, an American award that recognises excellence in the television industry, over her sex-for-grades investigation which uncovered assault in Africa’s university system.

In 2019, Mordi and her BBC Africa Eye team released a 13-minute documentary that exposed sexual harassment meted out to students at the University of Lagos and University of Ghana by lecturers.


2020 has been an interesting year for Nigerian Afropop singer, songwriter and self-acclaimed Mama Africa, Yemi Alade. The songstress was among the fore front artists/musicians from across the world to perform at “The Global Goal:  Unite for our future” sponsored by the Global Citizen, alongside international acts like Miley Cyrus, Shakira, Jennifer Hudson, Usher, Justin Bieber and Quavo in June 2020.

Her achievements will be downplayed without the mention of her ground-breaking appearance on "My Power" and "Don't Jealous Me" visuals from Beyoncé's Black Is King visual album.


Nigerian actress, producer, and director, Genevieve Nnaji started her acting career as a child actor in the then-popular television soap opera Ripples at the age of 8 and was introduced into the growing Nigerian film industry with the movie, Most Wanted.

Her directorial debut movie, Lionheart, is the first Netflix Original from Nigeria, and first Nigerian submission for the Oscars. The movie was however disqualified for having most of its dialogue in English. Despite this setback, the screen mogul had a turnaround in 2020 when she was named as an ambassador for the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) 2020 among other selected movie stars worldwide.


International recognition is definitely not a new feat for Nigerian singer and songwriter, Tiwa Savage who began her music career doing backup vocals for artists such as George Michael and Mary J Blige. In November 2018, Savage won Best African Act at the 2018 MTV Europe Music Awards, becoming the first woman to win the category. In May 2019, she announced her record deal with Universal Music Group.

The 40-year-old singer who is set to release a new album, Celia made her debut US TV appearance as she performed the track “Dangerous Love” on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon.

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