Nigerian-born American YouTube influencer, Jackie Aina has been criticized by Nigerian social media users for the use of the ‘Soro Soke‘ slogan in promoting her new fragrance.
On Thursday, August 4, the youtuber shared a video on her various social media platforms where she shared a promotional video for ‘Owambe’ brand.
In the caption for the video, Aina used the ‘Soro Soke‘ a term that was popularized by Nigerian youths during the #EndSARS protest in 2020. Specifically, ‘Soro Soke’, a Yoruba word means to ‘Speak up‘ in English language.
Sharing the video on social media, she captioned her video,
“Welcome to Owambe! We are celebrating life and inviting you all to be a part of it. The collection features 4 new fragrances: Sòrò Sókè, No Wahala, Soft Life and Spice of Life. All candles are available NOW on our website and
Welcome to Owambe! We are celebrating life and inviting you all to be a part of it. The collection features 4 new fragrances: Sòrò Sókè, No Wahala, Soft Life and Spice of Life. All candles are available NOW on our website and @sephora !!! pic.twitter.com/DUjwKDkcjK
— FORVR MOOD (@Forvrmood) August 4, 2022
The caption has since sparked mixed reactions among netizens due to the inclusion of the word, ‘Soro Soke‘.
Slamming her for being insensitive, social media users stated that several Nigerian youths died during the #EndSARS protest especially during the Lekki shootout on October 20, 2020. Further, livid Nigerians are criticizing her refusing to speak against the Nigerian government at the time.
She has cautioned to bring down the post with immediate effect or change the name of the ‘Soro Soke’ fragrance.
Below is a cross-section of comments from Nigerian youths.
The reason why this is receiving so much backlash is because Jackie Aina shamelessly named one of the candles “Soro Soke” which translates into “speak up”.
It was one of the rallying cries during EndSars. But Jackie was notably silent during the protests. https://t.co/UABKMNFJnG
— Holadera (@HolaDera) August 5, 2022
Is Jackie Aina serious? What even is a soro soke scented candle going to smell like?
— Biliquis (@Biliquis_X) August 5, 2022
— Church Girl, Bad Girl (@SosoTheWanderer) August 5, 2022
Who is she for us to hate her.
We have enough on our hands already.
No one gives a damn what she is selling but using that term ‘SORO SOKE’ at the expense of those that lost their life.
A white female writer tried it & we took it down.
Jackie Aina should know better.
— Gandalf (@jsgandalf) August 5, 2022
jackie aina blocked me for saying she was in the military and was making promo videos for military propaganda and american imperialism so her naming a candle “soro soke” after protests in nigeria which she was silent on is #not surprising. benefiting off suffering is her brand ☹️ pic.twitter.com/d5cllJoy0y
— the summer agapé turned petty (@agapethamar) August 5, 2022
Scented candles are supposed to give off comfort and amazing fragrance vibes. No one in the branding team told her that Soro Soke is far from comfort, it represents pain from EndSARS but I’m sure Jackie Aina thought oh it’s a Nigerian popping slang, a trend…Naija to the world 😭
— BDM🦅 (@Blackdotmandy) August 5, 2022
jackie aina soro soke ata rodo soft life jollof tear gas scented candle
— man of God (@stopperceiving) August 5, 2022
If Jackie Aina truly made a candle brand off the soro soke/end sars saga, that’s truly in bad taste.
There are people from that movement who were killed , are still reported missing , who are still in prison. DJ switch literally had to leave the country
— Dammy Rosewood 👑 (@DammyRosewood) August 5, 2022
Jackie Aina went down the route of product names associated with Yoruba/Nigeria phrases familiar with social media users.
Calling a candle brand Owambe doesn’t add up to a native speaker, and certainly Soro Soke brings offence in context. (1/2)
— Daryl E. ✝️ 🇳🇬🇸🇱🇬🇭 (@daryl_ei) August 5, 2022
Ahhhhh Jackie Aina 🙊🙊🙊🙊😱😱😱😱..
Just listen to this, see what she reduced “soro soke” to 🙊🙊🙊😔😔 pic.twitter.com/ATPxJlsCJB
— Darling (@thatfemigirl) August 5, 2022
Lmao I can’t even express myself well on this Soro soke issue because I used to be in love with Jackie Aina. I wish it was someone else with this tomfoolery.
— Big Daddy Gersh (@GershomDavis) August 5, 2022
If you watch the Jackie Aina video, she says she had the scent first and then wanted to match it with an appropriate name.
The scent was giving her confidence , boldness etc and Soro Soke was the match …?
Nah the explanation has pissed me off more pic.twitter.com/iDNW3Hoc7G
— #onceapollotime (@RejiYates) August 5, 2022