Journalism in the service of society

Happy Birthday my country, but you need to wake up

By Oreofe Precious

I just need Nigeria to understand that it’s OK to make mistakes. The journey of life is a difficult  one, it’s OK to fall but not rising after falling is what is bad. But even at that, Nigeria must know that her life is too sensitive for her to have negative people or countries around her.

NIGERIA can be likened to a female child who is finding the process of growth difficult.

The year 2020 made me see Nigeria as a hustling country. If you are in your right senses, you wouldn’t expect much from a hustling girl, would you? Instead, you will invest in the girl so that years later, your name will be written boldly in the girl’s memoir just like the names of Fela, Soyinka and Awolowo will never be erased in the history of Nigeria.

Growing up as a female child in this part of the world has been quite tedious because there are too many negative people around me. So I imagine how difficult it is for Nigeria growing up with so many negative people and countries around her.

The very same way some African parents look up to a struggling child for their daily bread is the same way many inhabitants of Nigeria look up to her and; if care is not taken, this weight will crush her, that  is why she still has lots of alarming lapses at 60.

People  are hungry, children are dying everyone is complaining, but we should  always  have it at the back of our minds that Rome wasn’t built in a day and real things take time. Also, we should know that part of the beauty of a flower is how long it took to grow. 

We compare Nigeria to China, America and other countries, if we are conversant with the history of the world, we would  know that America gained independence  on the 4th  July, 1776 which makes it 244 years old. And China has a history of over 3000 years of civilization. Comparing Nigeria —  which will only be 60 in  a few days — to these countries is like comparing Oreofe Precious, 21-year old graduate of English to Wole Soyinka, the 86-year old Nobel laureate in literature. Is the gap not far? Igi imú jìnnà sọ rí (the nose is far away from the forehead.

 Real things really, really take time.

AT this point in my life I can say I am independent because  I no longer call my mother for pocket money, but that’s because  I have a job and a few ‘toasters’ send money into my account  hoping to have their cake someday, hehehehe

The same thing is applicable to Nigeria. She has resources –Petroleum and Agriculture, mainly; her other businesses with other countries can be likened to the little money my lovers and toasters deposit into my account. 

In some ways I am independent and in another I am not. That is same for Nigeria.

I just need Nigeria to understand that it’s OK to make mistakes. The journey of life is a difficult  one, it’s OK to fall but not rising after falling is what is bad. But even at that, Nigeria must know that her life is too sensitive for her to have negative people or countries around her. She must know when to shed weight, when to take a walk, how to take a walk, when to take a walk and where to walk to.

And when I say Nigeria, I mean you, I mean me, I mean us because we are the ingredients that make the soup called Nigeria. So, if you as a tomato is rotten then it will affect me as a rodo (pepper) and my friend as a fish will feel it, the whole soup is in trouble.

I spent quite a lot of time and life ranting on social media that we aren’t doing things in our mother tongue, later this year I took the baton and started telling stories in Yorùbá; in a matter of months I got two apprentices and they are doing well, they volunteered.

THAT change you want, that thing you think is missing in your country you should try to fix it too. If you think wearing rubber shoes will help in raining seasons and shoe makers aren’t making them anymore, why not learn shoe making and start making them then create a blog and write about it; see if people will not dance to your tune. Blogging is even far-fetched, make shoes and post it on social media, then sit back and watch your growth.

Just know that if you complain always, nothing will change. It’s so easy to complain, I see people who complain as lazy.  You just don’t owe it to your country, you owe it to yourself too. Whatever you don’t like, fix it, whatever you can’t fix, endure it; nothing lasts forever and time is too precious to be spent on complaints. That is if we stop believing our saviour will someday come down from the sky and deliver us from our imaginary oppressors. Human is the saviour of the human race.

We can’t keep pushing it all to the government, if we always remember  that those we call government  aren’t super beings, if we don’t always forget that Buhari is a mere human who has his own problems too, maybe worse than ours, maybe not. I guess we would just mind our business and contribute our own quota. For example, his state of health. For me an average Nigerian, once I take herbs and a few white chalks, I am back to normal, but he has to undergo surgery and all sort of things before he can be psychologically fit, I think we should sometimes be glad we don’t have health failures like that of our president even though a sick leader is a sick nation. And let’s not forget that part of his sickness is old age; of course, that is  not an excuse for his failed administration, which  has been recorded as a failure in history.

However, 2020 came as a lesson to all of us, I hope when the  wound heals we won’t forget the lessons learnt.

Happy birthday Nigeria, I wish you the very best in life.

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