We Are Nigeria

Unlike almost every other before it, this article might not contain as many jokes as the others. It might also not contain as many memes as before because unlike the rest, I am not planning this. This is purely an outpour of emotions and I can sincerely say that I have no idea how this will end but please be patient with me as I take you on this ride.

Not too long ago, about 80 Nigerians or so were arrested for fraud. A piece of information stating that Nigerian scammers had swindled $1.1bn from Americans between January and now was published and the internet went into a meltdown. The rest of the world watched and probably judged us all as criminals as most people tend to do. Perhaps that was why the CEO of a company operating in Nigeria decided to cancel his company’s operations in the country because really, a bad image isn’t good for business.

Of course, he was later lambasted on Linkedin but imagine how many other people might have thought in that same direction.

Soon afterwards, news spread across virtually all platforms that 23 Nigerians were going to be executed in Saudi Arabia for drug trafficking. Again, Nigeria’s image had been soiled and the world had another reason to think of us differently than the industrious, illustrious and innovative bunch that we are.

Perhaps the worst of Nigeria’s plight now is the indiscriminate murdering of its citizens in South Africa. As a mass communication student, I can’t ignore the fact that some of the videos were probably untrue. They might have even happened two to three years ago in war torn regions but the truth remains that Nigerians are suffering outside the borders of the country. Again, the internet melted down and began crying out for help to protect our brothers and sisters being killed outside the country but besides the envoy that was said to have been sent, it seems as though nothing has really happened and even now, people are becoming less and less concerned everyday.

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To make matters worse, instead of attacking the actual problem, some Nigerians went ahead to raid South African owned businesses. An MTN office was allegedly burnt and Shoprite in Lagos state was raided as people carted away thousands of nairas’ worth of goods. There are several holes in the reasoning of this mob but that’s not the biggest source of my pain. For a country that is regarded as the Giant of Africa, we are being beaten down very badly and surprisingly, we are doing it to ourselves.

Yes, we really cannot blame ourselves for the alleged indiscriminate killing of our brothers and sisters in South Africa but what about everything else? I once read a book where they said that all your problems are entirely your fault. Even if they are not your fault, they are your responsibility and as such, you don’t get to complain but that seems to be all that we do these days.

“Why can’t the government do this?”, “why do we have electricity issues?”, “why can’t the government do something about the difficulty associated with getting a visa?”, “we are having too many problems in this country, I wish I was a Canadian.” Sadly, all of these are entirely pointless and unproductive wailings because really, they won’t get anywhere. Sure, you and your friends would have a conversation about it and you would seem really smart when you start rolling out the points but afterwards, what happens again? The same exact thing, maybe even on a larger scale.

Lemme stop you real quick and tell you that at this point, I was more confused than you probably are when I wrote this article.

As implied in the caption, you are most likely confused as to what the heck I am saying right now so I’ll break it down. Rather than complain about the poor state of the country and how the rest of the world doesn’t like us, be the change you want to see.

So, when you see that friend who is desperate for money, enough to go into yahoo, do everything you possibly can to stop them. When you see someone flouting the rules of what is good and what isn’t, stop them however way you can within the borders of the law. When Nigerians are being attacked in other countries simply because they are Nigerian, rather than just post videos with sad emojis on the internet, make your message more targeted. Start a campaign where you would tag the relevant government officials. A thousand notifications per minute on their computers would go a long way in putting their citizens in their hearts. They may ignore it but at least you would have done your best.

Just for emphasis…

This country is ours. Whether or not we like it, it is home. Majority of us were born here and another large majority would take our last breath here. We cannot continue to sit by while its name is dragged in the mud and its citizens are dragged to their graves. We have to do as much as we possibly can. We are Nigeria.

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As I said earlier, this article is born purely out of emotions. There is no logic to it. There is no plan. If you find yourself lost or confused as to how these things correlate, please pardon me. My main point is that we need to do more. Fight actively against the things that threaten to destroy our nation and our future in the right way rather than just sit on our butts and complain all day about it.

Regardless of how sad I am, your opinion still matters. So,

  • What did you think of the article?
  • When was the last time you were frustrated while trying to do something (no matter how small) to help make the country a better place and how did it happen?
  • What is that thing that worries you the most when it comes to the country and how it could affect your future?

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You couldn’t have said it better. The whole situation is disheartening.


Thanks for the article

Osho Pelumi
Osho Pelumi

This was a really cool article I felt the emotions and agree to your concept of the whole xenophobia issue. I really feel its poverty and poverty mentality that would make some Nigerians go out of their home and burn down business enterprises owned by South Africans, cart away or rather (Steal) their goods and claim they are doing it in revenge for the people that died in South Africa. The whole situation is rather appalling.