Thursday, February 10, 2011

Catching-up with a Nigerian in Diaspora

Olanrewaju, my High School friend, visited Nigeria recently. I asked him how he felt about the situation back home and he replied, "I saw a couple of changes—people have more stuff. When I was there, there were no movie Theaters and Plazas. This means more job opportunities are opening up. 

However, the people don’t look happy. Their facial expression didn’t give me a good vibe. Nigerians are the happiest people on earth but their facial expression didn’t depict that when I visited. The visit to Nigeria discouraged me from considering coming home soon. Electricity is still bad. I thought things would have improved. In the US, customer service is held at high esteem but in Nigeria, it seems nobody cares. At the airport, I was trying to have my bag checked, the officer directing me pointed to a group of guys and said "go meet that man there" when there were about 5 men…"

When Olanrewaju left Lagos in 2002, his plans were simple- get a good education overseas and come back to serve Nigeria as a politician. But Like many young Nigerians in diaspora in search of a qualitative education to achieve their dreams, once they acclimatized into the system abroad, their plans change! ‘Lanre’s perception on life was broadened after he got into College. He obtained a BA in Accounting from Georgia State University.

Does this imply he is in support of brain drain?
"It won’t hurt to gain experience here and learn what is making them successful and use it to improve things back home." He said.
In his opinion, some of the things young Nigerians need to keep in mind in the quest to contribute to Nigeria’s development includes:
Education:
Educate people that don’t want to be educated by telling them about the importance of education to personal and national development.
Set a goal:
Know what you want out of life—have a goal in life and set how to achieve it.
Community service and volunteer work:
learn to give a little of your time to serve your community—giving your time shows you care about your country.
Keep good companion:
Hang out with good people. If you hang around with the wrong crowd, it will rub off on you. One of the principles I learnt in High School is that joining multitude to do evil will make you evil.

1 comment:

gateway360 said...

at first I thought the blog post was about me. I guess I am not the only one that feels the way.