The name Nigeria might make this reading un-interesting at first but I think in the words of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, “the danger of a single story’ may help you go on. Many a time, people speak of a country and never visit; some visit and only get to see the tourist sites, never meeting people from that land or understanding why a culture exists.
The name Nigeria never seem to interest people nowadays because of the numerous stories being heard of from the news and from the few others encounter from fraud, but what exactly is Nigeria? Who exactly are its people? Is there something people don’t know that its citizens know? Why is the name Nigeria not associated with the best news?
We could recount its independence, its landscape and even its numerous predicaments but there are other social media networks doing that. In fact, the name Nigeria should not be the only reason you want to read this piece- just imagine a story with no name, no origin and no initial knowledge but imagine learning something new with it.
The real tale of Nigeria as you must come to understand, can be told by its citizen for we all know what we have seen. Forget the history you know, Nigeria is more than just a country; it consist of people, people that are not just black skinned, but people who you must come to understand possess more than you see.
A Nigerian citizen however you might have viewed them before today are like you. They all want to succeed in life and they would do it at all cost. Understand this, success differs to every man; to some it is with large sums of money, to some it is living peacefully whether or not they possess large sums of money to acquire what they would never make use of or not and it is safe to say, this is every man’s dream.
Nigerians making it at all cost should not scare you, it should only make you ask, what is at all cost? When a man strives to become an entrepreneur, he does it because he never wants to answer “Yes sir” to anyone and this takes him to the point where he also wants to be at the top of his game. Nigerians ALWAYS want to be at the top of their game, no matter what they are found doing- it might sound silly to you now but would you not also want the same? It is however sad to say now that wanting to be at the top of your game, can sometimes bring in greed, evil, death, corruption and this is the picture many have of Nigeria.
Nigeria as a country consist of states, people, businesses and politicians- it has a massive amount of wealth, talent, ideas to rule the world and people with the capacity to change history but greed, evil, death, corruption has taken the hearts of men and this is the conclusion you have, that all Nigerians are corrupt but now I ask, if I visit Britain or Australia and I am thrown a cup of tea to leave the country by a man, does that mean everybody is a racist?
The news about Nigerians and the things they do, isn’t always an award for a Noble Laureate or a peace keeping prize but does that mean Nigeria has no Noble Laureate? Is it that every Nigerian you have met, hates peace? We have endangered ourselves if we think every Nigerian is like the truncated society we hear of because it is a lie- true our leaders and citizens are corrupt, the news about the country is much devastating and the youths who seek to make a difference, have little to say but we are now fighting to change that.
Nigeria and Nigerians have long been seen as a fallow country, one with no peace, no gift, its citizens however beautiful, have been seen as hoodlums who migrate to other countries and never want to return, they have been viewed from the eye of the press as a country with wealth and citizens with violent spirits and no one has ever thought to ask a Nigerian, are you proud that this has happened in your country?
Many of us grew up with stories and many of us have seen; Nigeria is not as the old days when the currency made other countries beg for our presence in their cities, Nigeria needs security, when money used in the country is mentioned, you may wonder just like its citizens, if that money truly exist, innocent people have been killed in Nigeria, evil that has become unimaginable has been done, Nigeria is not a country where everyone is given benefits just for being a citizen, Nigeria is not a country that has stability, it is a country where people have learned to take the bull by the horn.
Nigerians are spiritual- they go to church but they are also people who as we hear, consult evil powers, so those who are kind, are kind and those who seek wicked ways, do so but end up at their Waterloo Nigerians have cultures, Nigerians have temperaments like everyone, there are times when even the good ones get offended but Nigerians are the nicest people you will ever meet. There is much good in the land than evil, things are going on that say people want change, Nigeria has gone on the wrong lane but it wants to come home, it is a good investment land, there is more to the country than you hear in the news, there is enough space for everyone and there are times when peace is all there is.
You may never understand what it feels like to be a Nigerian but every Nigerian has a tale of the Nigeria they grew up in, they might occupy your countries, you might have met the ones whom you wish you never did but without your findings, all you will ever know about Nigeria is the country and not its people.