By Kate Henshaw
Another weekend is here. We all look forward to it and though the Sallah holidays were more than adequate as people travelled out in droves, not many looked forward to returning to the daily grind on Wednesday if the truth be told. It is with a sigh of relief that we welcome the weekend with open arms.

We as Nigerians, we love the holidays, time off to chill, if we can; if PHCN would let us relax in our homes in peace without  the head-pounding noise of the generators, I hear there are inverters now that can give one constant light for 12hrs straight but they too cost a bundle depending on how many batteries are needed.

So here we are again sourcing for an alternative means of power for our daily existence in Nigeria; yet the electricity tariffs have been increased with no corresponding increase in the supply of power and we pay taxes!

Hardly a day goes by without the headlines of the dailies telling tales of woe; be it the antics of the BH wasting human lives in their numbers in the northern part of Nigeria, the pensions of hard working civil servants being carted away by scrupulous Director Generals and their board or the death traps on our roads.

Millions of money being poured down the drain of various awarded contracts that never get done or completed. The inadequate maintenance of our infrastructure that are left dilapidated purposely so that someone can make millions from awarding the contract to bring them back to some semblance of good condition for usage. Strikes are embarked upon supposedly to right the wrongs but they end with no logical conclusion to the matter at hand; NUPENG, PHCN, ASUU,etc.

How come all these stolen money is never recovered? Your guess is as good as mine. Discussing Nigeria is a daily staple and I have come to the conclusion that one has to steal big to make it worthwhile because then, you never go to jail nor return the money. Only the man who steals 5000 Naira or a bicycle gets thrown into jail and even the innocent woman who was just by the side of the road when a LASTMA official was killed by a bus driver, gets thrown into jail with her two month old baby!

We live in terrible times in Nigeria and not a few are certain of what the future holds anymore. We just simply exist and pray with hope in our hearts that our fortunes in this country will change for the better one sweet day. The social media is where the young and young at heart or those who are internet savvy go to discuss matters arising. This post by one called Osa caught my interest.

Who is Nigerian by the way was the question. It read thus: Personally I believe before we can act Nigerian, we have got to learn to think Nigerian no? And who is a Nigerian by the way?

And how does one qualify to be Nigerian? Is it by birth, marriage, by association or by naturalisation? Too many questions and no doubt many people with ready answers to offer and seriously it is my Point of View that before we can truly make progress as a Nation, we should first distinguish between a real Nigerian and a counterfeit Nigerian.

In the face of the current realities in the nation, real true Blooded “Nigerianess” requires a higher motivation to see the country remain one; a far cry from the call by ethnic bigots for a separation of the entity called Nigeria. A real Nigerian embodies a high dream and purpose rather than spend time whining all day long, she has learnt to evaluate her expectations and be on point at anticipating potential change opportunities around her.

The real Nigerian understands that one of the challenges we face as a nation is usually ourselves. A real Nigerian resists the temptation to blame ‘others’ for every short coming and can ‘see’ that while leadership goes beyond good intentions, a little bit of empathy is needed to acknowledge the tensions encountered in leading a nation of such diverse people.

A real Nigerian uses her power of ‘Occupation’ to make positive progress, the kind that will hopefully evolve into the change that we all desire. A real Nigerian is committed to making a difference and shirks rhetoric, choosing rather to adopt Nike’s slogan and ‘JUST DO IT’ and adding a large dose of FIFA’s ‘FAIR PLAY’ whilst dealing with everyone, then watch out for the score sheet.

The real Nigerian is a constitution junkie and is engaged in the national conversation because she knows her rights. The real Nigerian is a game changer. Are You One? If you are then start today to think Nigerian and act Nigerian.

It made for an interesting read. Indeed the true problem of this nation is the inhabitants, the Nigerians. Our ways are so convoluted and morals are askew. If you are one of the few good men/women who challenge the status quo, the response you get is always the same “you know how it is in Nigeria”; you are seen as a trouble maker, an activist in the negative sense of the true meaning of the word.

Things are falling apart and the centre cannot hold anymore. We cannot keep falling into this endless pit we have ostensibly dug for ourselves. Will the real Nigerians please stand up and be counted? Will the Real Nigerians be the ones to make that change? Do I see any hands being lifted up?


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Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.