I have received several responses after publishing the first part of this piece (I give up On Nigeria- Part 1), many left comments and a lot more emailed me privately to express their disgust for the country they loved so much, but have been repeatedly let down by its leadership and level of development. As a result of which many had left and many more are still leaving to other countries so as to forget about the problems in Nigeria. So many vowed not to return to Nigeria ever again and many others said there is still hope and I do not have to give up yet.
I am glad that the first part of this piece has generated as much response from people as it did, this goes to show that irrespective of where we are and what we are and the evil that our past leaders have done, Nigerians still clearly have the interest of the country at hearts.
Nigerians started travelling abroad in the 1950’s, at the time it was majorly for education and most of those going abroad then were sponsored through government scholarship or their parents. Nigerians like knowledge and spend enormous amount of money in search of it, they travel wide, going to the best universities in the world, spending millions in hard currencies, in order to be tutored by the best teachers in the world and gain the best professional qualifications.
Many even borrow money to study abroad, some families give up all they have to send their wards to those expensive schools all over the world. This to me is good; any money spent on learning is not a waste. What bothers me however is that only very few come back home with their new-status, to work in developing the country they have left behind, they simply loose hope about Nigeria once they get to their new country where things work. They prefer to milk the cow they have not helped in grooming, but fail to realise that those countries did not get to that level in one day; they have put so many human efforts into it.
Most Nigerian students that have gone abroad to study prefer to stay in their new found land when they complete their programmes; they can see things working and they work out ways to get permanent residence through any available means. By doing this, we have the best Nigerian professionals helping their host countries to develop, leaving our countries in the hands of corrupt, confused and clueless individuals. However, many of this Nigerian graduates who refused to come back home where sponsored by scholarship from our system, they would rather not go back to the mess at home, but stay in their new adopted country and point accusing finger at the leadership back home. These decades of neglect is what has got us to where we are today.
We all stand ‘far far away’, from Europe to the Middle East, Asia to Australia, America to the Antarctica; and point accusing fingers at our under-performing leaders, while we all ignore the fact that it is our fault that things have got so bad. Many Nigerian have located to what they consider as better lives abroad and clearly abandon their land. Our best brains are scattered everywhere abroad and we have committed our nation to rogues and thieves who have shown us that they are experts in manipulating the country and sieving the resources to their personal gain. We have all abandoned our country for too long, committing our resources to the best rascals and this is now starring us all in the face. We can continue to clamour for a better Nigeria, but change doesn’t just happen, we have to make it happen. No one will change Nigeria for us, if we all continue to stay or run abroad, who will do it for us. Nobody leave their home with their door open and expect to come back home to meet things better than they have left it.
The desperation to move abroad has reached a dangerous peak. Nigeria was better for it before the door was opened for us to go abroad, we were all in the country together and we all worked for the development of the country, at the time, every new graduates has a job ready once they graduate, companies where springing up, they even offer official cars and houses. The public schools were run by happy teachers and the students were all happy to go to school, there was so much discipline in our schools, our parents had good jobs and businesses and we always had food on the table. We went to parks on the weekends and daddies stop over at Leventis Stores to get snacks home on Friday evenings. Family, friends and neighbours all came together on weekends to eat and dine; there was love and deep respect for our lives. The demarcation between the rich and poor was very slim. These lifestyles sadly have been thrown out of the window. It is more like a jungle now and it is survival of the fittest. We all now live in our different cages and very suspicious of ourselves, we are all now very manipulative and looking for ways to out-play one another. The relationship ladders have broken down completely.
Many who might want to come back home would rather spend the best of their productive years abroad before coming back home, they come back to meet the country worse than what they have left. We have subjected our country to corrupt and greedy individuals for a long time that the country is in such a mess, and it would take a lot of hard work to clean the mess. Let us free our current leaders, we are expecting too much from them, they only run the country; they are not the business men and women we need, let us bring home all the innovation we have learnt abroad and help to create jobs and better country. A lot of us are doing very well where we are; let us bring the wealth home to develop our land. We need to come back home, be involved now and play our part in the transformation process in our little ways and in no long time, we can be back to our once happy country.