What more could be the best possession of a country blessed with a population of over 140 million people? What would a multitude of people with differing languages, tradition, cultural beliefs and principle like to share in common?
Often, other parts of the world wonder why the country Nigeria is one of the most trend-friendly nations in Africa as well as one of the most controversial countries in the world. This is because they cannot really comprehend who Nigerians are and how to locate the meeting point of its cultural diversity but uniform state of mind-This is the Naija state of mind.
This frame of mind believes in being sympathetic with the causes that need empathy, respectful to the ones that deserve reverence and abusive to the ones that arouse their arrogance.
It is this state of mind that makes Nigerians embrace anything that brings pride to their Nation. Nigerians that have taken the world by the collar and proven that the Nation is not just a crude oil reserve but also a mine of impressive scholarly populace are not a handful; they are uncountable. Great writers, musicians, artists, actors, scientists and other categories of people have helped beamed the spotlight on Africa, as a continent filled with great intellectual and talented persons and not the economically disoriented as speculated by some of the Western Countries.
The Green state of mind seeks for greener days and pastures, which has accounted for the mass exodus of intellectuals to developed countries.
The Lagos State of mind provides multinationals and corporations to benefit immensely from the population size and purchasing habits of the people provided their products have an appealing outlook and beneficial use. Due to the competitive nature of life in this part of the country, it takes more than mere struggle to flourish here. This accounts for the popular belief that if you can make fortunes in Lagos, you can make it anywhere in the world.
The Abuja State of mind drives citizens to perceive the National seat of power as personal and ancestral artefact rather than as an opportunity to serve and develop the resources of the country.
The southwest state of mind is that Nigeria is a land enriched with beautiful agricultural landscapes and cash crops and that its richness can only be maximized when the farmer is properly educated, while the south-south and south-eastern mental state is that though the soil of the nation rests on an oil planet of unfathomable depths, it is underdeveloped because its wealth is siphoned into the bank accounts of gluttonous leaders. The northern state of thoughts is that the motherland should not just produce good food crops and diary products, but it must be at the forefront of the continent in religious values and should maintain peace and order with its potent armed forces.
The educational psyche state of mind makes you realize that you absorb more knowledge when you study under intense conditions. It gives you a feeling of discomfort and hastens you to grasp as much as you can, as quick as you can and get out of the educational system.
The Nollywood state of mind teaches the world that Nigerians pride in their entertainment industry, and that they will utilize the little that they have to produce the best and that no matter how much of the foreign culture the nation imbibes, it will always preserve its culture, moral values and heroic chronicles.
The Naija state of mind makes the citizens of Nigeria participate in nationwide voting exercises in performance of their civic responsibilities and assures them that things will take a better toll in the forthcoming days.
The Naija, the Nigerian state of mind makes you understand that Nigerians are not violent people and believe more in dialogue than in violent protests, even in the face of corruption. It is the act of being in spiritual shape, prayerfully communicating with the Supreme Being.
It presents to the world that the country Nigeria is radically symmetrical and can be likened to an orange fruit, which when cut through at any half presents a uniform midrib. The Naija voice vehemently opposes the notion that Nigeria is one of the most corrupt countries in the world because it believes that corruption is universal, and that a handful of cases mentioned out of a population of over 140 million individuals is not sufficient reason to label the Nation in that way.
The Naija state mind is deep and can be misconstrued if one is not a citizen of the country because in actions, speech and thoughts, it projects the same strong message in a very strong and audacious ways;
Naija Na Kowa (Nigeria is our own). It is not a protégé of any other country in the world.
This message is conveyed by the Average driver’s sense of ownership of the road, the power authority’s monopolistic electric supply and failure and the National leaders’ manic grasp of the seat of power.
This state of mind does not mean that Nigerians have stereotyped thoughts, because all hands are on ground to ensure a much better, properly governed and well-sensitized country. It simply highlights the state of the Nation, how much it has progressed after gaining its independence and how it strives to be among the most desirable nations to live in the world.
Nigeria may be a constellation of diverse language, cultures and beliefs but when we converse we all speak “Naija”.