Africa Defense Forum
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Nigerian Cartoon Going Global

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Apopular children’s cartoon by a Nigerian animator is promoting African culture and stories.

The Bino & Fino cartoon series, which first aired 10 years ago, is now broadcast in 15 countries, including the United States and the United Kingdom.

The show’s creator, animator Adamu Waziri, said that it made no sense for Africa’s most-populous nation not to have a children’s cartoon show of its own. 

He said it was challenging to find skilled animators in Nigeria: “You have to do a lot of training,” he told Voice of America. He said that a cartoon series initially takes two to three years to produce, and does not generate revenue during that time.

Bino & Fino is about a brother and sister who live in an unnamed African city. In each episode Bino and Fino, with the help of their friend Zeena the Magic Butterfly and their family, discover and learn things about Africa and the world. The show is aimed at children ages 3 to 5.

The pilot episode celebrated Nigeria’s Independence Day and looked at the issue of colonialism. The cartoon also has had segments teaching the numbers one to 10 in the Nigerian Igbo and Yoruba languages, CNN reported.

Bino & Fino isn’t the only children’s cartoon produced in Africa. Tinga Tinga Tales, for example, is made in Kenya for the BBC, while Jungle Beat is produced in South Africa and has been shown internationally. Both cartoons, like many set in Africa, tell stories about the continent’s animals. Waziri was determined to do something different, CNN said.

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