By Anita Eboigbe
A Nigerian model, Adetutu Alabi, has called on the public to desist from bullying people with tribal marks.
Tribal marks are scarification which are specific identification and beautification marks designed on the face or body people’s bodies.
Popular in African countries, tribal marks are usually inscribed on the body by burning or cutting of the skin during childhood.
Adetutu, who has visible facial tribal marks, recently went viral when she went public with her request to model for U.S. Grammy award winner and pop star, Rihanna.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Rihanna eventually followed Adetutu on Instagram which inspired a social media challenge highlighting the pains and stigmatisation suffered by people with tribal marks.
Revealing the motivation behind her viral call, Adetutu said on her instagram page that she has been a victim of intense bullying all her life because of her obvious tribal marks.
She also added that people, Nigerians especially, needs to learn that beauty is skin-deep and tribal marks should be seen as beauty scars.
She said, “It’s not easy growing up with Tribal marks. The bullying was much though it hasn’t stopped yet. I still get insulted whenever I go out. I want to thrive in what was meant to make me feel bad. I want to model for Rihanna. It will be a dream come true. I grow a thicker skin every day. Bullies make me want to do more than they expect I could be. Bully or bodyshame me at your peril.”
The model and single mother has sparked a trending conversation around the body shaming suffered by people with tribal marks on all social platforms.
NAN reports that Adetutu’s anti-bullying campaign has also been featured in several media platforms, including British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).