By Josephine Agbonkhese & Anino Aganbi
Elizabeth Akin- Abiola
I’m doing everything I used to do in the past as usual, but in moderation. You know, in Nigeria, if you don’t know how to manage yourself, you will be in trouble. If you say you want to be like the Jones; you’ll be in big trouble. As far as I’m concerned, I don’t know what recession is because I’ve always lived my life in moderation. If anyone is doing aso-ebi and I cannot afford the price, I simply tell them I can’t pay for it. Truly, it’s very easy to cope in Nigeria if you know how to manage your resources.
In the last 12 years, I made a vow to have every kobo of my October salary, every year, shared among widows of my very close colleagues who were Pastors and were called to be with the Lord so early. Then in November, I distribute this as Xmas gifts to the indigent around me.
This year, I had to take an overdraft from my bank to sort out these dependants and as survival plan, I decided to cancel my usual Xmas trip home and then envelope money to be given to people back home.
This way, I’ve cut off the incidental expenses usually incurred in the village. Secondly, all parties requiring expensive aso-ebi have to be curtailed. Frivolous spending is out of the way for me at the moment. I do a full list of expenses to be incurred before money is spent. I can’t owe and can’t borrow, so, I must spend strictly within my earning capacity.
However, my family will eat right and share food to our Moslem neighbours and some indigent people around; but no wastages. We’ve never had it this tough in the history of Nigeria; starvation is taking its toll on the masses.
Ajayi David Kehinde
There has been increment in salaries in my organization and it was given generally even though it was small. November salary has been paid and we are looking forward to getting that of December soon. For this Christmas, a lot will be different though because the prices of items have gone up. I will be cutting down a lot on my expenses. I however will still try to give gifts to my families, friends and associates.