The Change we desire

This post was inspired by Justjoxy. We had this “discussion” on twitter and I ended up sending this mail to her. Some parts of the mail has been edited.

When I started this blog it was to talk about issues in Nigeria especially and in the world. Political issues to be precise. Somewhere along the line, the way things were going and all made me stop blogging on issues. I couldn’t really take it any longer and decided, rather than get worked up and get my blood pressure high, I better not think or write about political issues. And just write about life and other things.

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I completely agree with you. We are the leaders. They came out from amongst us. And that is what scares me.

Like I said, my generation isn’t any different from these leaders we have so how that change is gonna happen, I don’t know.

A generation focused on quick money? A generation that never had it easy so all they think of is NOW? A generation that watched those before them ruin the country? They really don’t care about others, all most of us think about is ourselves. A generation that never knew how good things can be and should be? Who never have seen anything work?

A generation quick to point fingers at the others but never thinking what they can do?

My fiance got into an argument with a friend of his during the subsidy issue. What was the problem? The guy kept blaming the government and he (my fiance) was trying to make him realize that yes, the government is bad and we need a change but change starts from us. If the leaders say die (as the revolution proponents are suggesting), there is no proof that those coming behind (my generation) would be any better.

We are basically focused on making it now. Everything must happen in an instant. The SUDDENLY generation. So most of us would get in to such positions and even do worse.

Quick examples. I worked at a Nigerian owned firm before coming here. Fortunately for me, I did an internship at a bank while in school. Now the bank isn’t a perfect organization but at that place I learnt how things should work. That company is run like a proper company. Going in after school to where I worked, I was shocked. They way people there work. No structure. Everybody working on making it quickly. I was talking to the former Chief Accountant who was in her late 30s and she said something that shocked me. She said  “I am not ready to leave this position in the next 10 years”. And I thought to myself, do you have an idea where your mates would be in the next 10 years? How much they would have achieved? Of course, she was sitting on top of money and was chopping it well so leaving wasn’t on her mind. To God be the glory some months after, she was removed and moved to a Business Unit where she now has to make money.  She hasn’t till date been able to do anything tangible.

I entered as a graduate trainee. I saw colleagues who when they talk, you start to question your sanity. They have no regard for processes, for doing things right. “Common” sending a mail ahead of time to inform people on things, was hard for a lot of them to do. They way they reasoned on some issues, you would be scared. And I kept wondering, these same people would want to contest and be in government.

And if I spoke, I heard things like you are from a privileged family, you don’t know how it is. You are exposed so you don’t know how it feels.

I went to school with children whose parents were in government. I saw how they behaved. One of the elections, while at school, we weren’t allowed to vote but INEC had votes from my school. How did that happen? When children of those in government see how their parents behaved, how do we expect them behave?  What have they learnt from their parents? How do we expect them to do things differently if they get into power or even in their offices? So how do we expect the change to come?

I talk to a lot of people in my generation and seriously I don’t see anything different. Truly, there are a lot of us who desire change howbeit our ways of thinking about the change is different. For a lot of young people, yes they want change BUT they are not looking at change starting from us. Our leaders have failed us and like Yorubas would say u can’t break dried fish. So why not start with ourselves? No. Most of us are looking at the leaders as those who should change. We would rather something happens and gets all of them killed. If they all die, would things change? I doubt it.

I see adverts like an Airtel ad which say “Millionaire at 29, 5 years late” and nobody, NOBODY asked that the ad be taken off air. I asked what message they were trying to pass on. We shout yahoo yahoo and all d scams and all yet we are encouraging people to be millionaires at 29. Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t a bad thing to be a millionaire at 29 but if you are saying someone who is a millionaire at that age is 5 years late? Making millions at 24 is the new thing. I get you can look at the ad from the angle of the Mark Zuckerberg and the Sillicon Valley gurus who made it big in their late teens and early 20s but considering the Nigerian mentality, little wonder why people would steal the country blind so as to be rich early. To think that this ad was put together by young people.

Until people get it in their mindsets that the change begins from US, and work to ensure that those who are going to ruin the country blind don’t get into power, the cycle is just gonna continue. Am scared for my children.

I read an article on BellaNaija recently and I just laughed.
Parenting in Nigeria is for lack of a better word crap.
You need to enter places like galleria and shoprite and see 12-16 years old on brazillian or peruvian weaves with Blackberries and Iphones, designer bags, at times at late hours of the day.
I remember a day my fiance and I went for lunch at shoprite and we just looked around and saw these definitely less than 15 year old girls and he goes “when I have my daughter she is definitely going to be home schooled. She isn’t going to see this kind of girls around and learn from them”. And we laughed about it but really it was disgusting.
What kind of adults would they be?

It looks very bleak on a serious note. I can go on and on. God help us. We need to start mixing prayers with actions.

Until we realize that the change starts from us; from even as little as when you drive and not leaving one end of the road to another end without using your pointers.

 The CHANGE STARTS FROM US.

God help us

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I do sincerely hope the Government would actually probe this crash and all those found culpable would be brought to book. Above all, I hope steps would be taking to avert such. Declaring 10 days or 3 days of mourning isn’t going to change anything. How do we ensure this doesn’t happen again? Truly, accidents and crashes would always happen. Even with new aircrafts. But when accidents that can be avoided do happen, it says a lot about our regulatory agencies. Social media has been awash with all sorts of posts on the age of most aircrafts in Nigeria. I hope the FG looks into it. And start putting the right people in the right positions. Seriously, we need to let go of this federal character/quota ish (I think that is what it is called) and put the right people in the right positions no matter where they are from.

Also, I hope this Dana Air official who says the aircraft was faulty is ready to come out of hiding (and stop hiding behind being anonymous) and face her bosses if a probe panel is constituted with FACTS.

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21 thoughts on “The Change we desire

  1. I have made the home-schooling comment a number of times .. No contact with the outside world … whether it be school, internet, TV etc .. till I am sure you are grounded and are thinking right .. that should be around age 30 .. yeah .. 30 ..

    But on the real, we do need to pray .. I say prayer, because while a small fraction of us can take the proactive stance and raise wonderful people in the next generation .. we are indeed a small fraction .. the abnormal – who believe in hard work and due diligence and perseverance and earning .. while the majority are from the land of now-now, entitlement..

    A recent write by Tony Rapu talked about the joke that is parenting .. In his words “Parental Delinquency .. all addressing the same topic .. raising the same issues – http://www.facebook.com/notes/tony-rapu/parental-delinquency/370022503058868

    BUT the key issue, and what is unfortunate is that those of us that see the problem and think there is something wrong are the minority .. No hard working parent would lavish their children with gifts they cannot appreciate if they worked hard for the money and want to teach the kids those same lessons..

    PRAYER .. the master key!

    1. I understand. Gonna read the article now.

      Yes, we need to pray. And we the minority also need to keep at doing what we can do. Till the change comes. And it will come.

      You know a parent was asked why her children can’t cook and she replied that she didn’t want them to suffer like she did. I was speechless. So by teaching them to cook, they are suffering?

      How do you justify giving a 4 year old girl and iPad as a gift? Someone said it is for educational purposes. I laughed.

      I dunno o but I hope my children wont hate me when they see what other parents are doing and giving their own children.

      And yes, Prayer is the master key

      1. It is cool not to be able to cook darling .. gosh .. get hair and nails all sweaty and messed up and all .. NOT cool mehn ..

        Oh .. the kids will hate you .. like I did my mother (not quite hate .. but that’s the word of choice) till things come full circle and the cliche “I now understand why” dawns on them .. I’ve heard this a number of times “you know you are a good parent when your kids hate you” .. so please ..allow them hate! This I think is another problem we have .. parents wanting to make their kids happy so they indulge and overindulge till they are all delirious with joy and then kids start throwing ultimate fits the minute they try to say NO and it dawns that their darling prince or princess is more brat than royal.

      2. If na that one, let the hatred begin. I remember “hating” my mum too, till I got older and am like oh thank you mummy.

        I can’t stand brats.

  2. This gives me hope. If the minority i.e. you and me who share the same values, do the little we can then I believe the change would gradually come. As for those who continually say we need prayer, yes we need prayers but the same bible says faith without works is dead. I think it is high time Nigerians start being vocal and stand up for what is right.

    1. Vocal yes. And quite a number of people are gradually getting vocal. By God’s grace, we would get there. Won’t come easy but we would.

  3. It’s always refreshing to see old fashioned value still alive.
    Unfortunately, we are now in the minority
    Even sadder, the Naija based parents are well to do are moving away from traditional values
    Is there any hope for us….?
    I truly believe we need our own ‘Rawlings’ or ‘Sankara’ because the average Nigerian worker prefers to cut corners ……….

    1. Back to the issue of our own Rawlings or Sankara.

      I used to strongly believe we needed someone in the mold of a Rawlings. Till I started thinking deeply about it. If we want a Rawlings, is he/she going to come as a civilian? Considering the Nigerian situation and context. Whoever is going to take such a “responsibility” needs to have a hold over the Military. So if it is a Civilian President, are we going to have someone like Obj who had some form of control over the Military even as a civilian? Without Obj’s vices? Or do we have the Military take power, clear the bad leaders and hand over to civilians? If that happens, do we have civilians who would actually do better and not worse than the current crop of leaders?

  4. I believe there is hope. I know there is hope. We the minority just have to keep working as hard as we can and not faint.

    Yes a Rawlings, but after the Rawlings comes, what next? Where is the Rawlings going to come from? The current crop of leaders? From us the “Youths”? If he/she comes out from amongst us, would we support? Are we really ready for the change we want?

  5. How long shall we be praying? While our fathers closed their eyes and were praying, people came in and corrupted the church. No offence, but then in Nigeria, we spend time praying as an excuse to stop us from acting. We don’t just need Moses’ we also need Aarons. The not so prayerful people who can actually go and kick some ass.
    Well said 🙂

  6. Thank you so very much for this! One of the comments that people make that irritates me is “English is not my first language. It is borrowed.” Perfect excuse for shooting grammatical blunders everywhere, and displaying our level of ignorance on the internet. You should read the comment sections on some Nigerian blogs; alarming! There was a picture on FB about a man suffering from Gynecomastia and majority didn’t even know it was a medical condition, neither did it pique their curiosity if honestly knew nothing about it. Their fingers just went “tatarata”, talking about how nasty he looked and even suggesting he is an hermaphrodite…

    Long story short, some of us don’t want to read the whole book. They’re looking for a one paragraph summary to our problems, band-aids. So sad.

  7. We can never get one paragraph summaries to our problems. Our problems are legion I believe.
    In all honesty, till we stop accepting mediocrity from ourselves and our leaders, ourselves first, things won’t change.

    Thanks for stopping by.

  8. *round of applause* something that I have never actually thought about is.. if all of the people in power die now will things change and like you have stated and explained, you are right things may not change!

    like i commented recently on naijamum’s blog… the way forward is for everyone to do their jobs and do it well..

    everyone is only thinking short term.. some have no ambitions at all.. how can you will yourself to be in the same position in 10 years time!

    people don’t know how good good can be, they are more than satisfied will the drop of goodness they have now…yet they look hungrily at other people hwo have taken the risk and gone more steps further to make the little they have even more.

    i have loads to say about this but i will end by saying this – as for the millionaire comment and people doing yahoo yahoo or taking short cuts to get rich… all i will say is.. people need to realise that the actual and true millionaires are those who work legitimately for it or develop things legitimately that end up being valued at millions.

    me, you and our fellow citizens need to use our God given brains and look to develop i tmore and more, sit down and think of how we can better ourselves, not short cut to the end. like our people say, awuf dey run belle, awuf includes short cuts and yahoo yahoo etc…

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