Nigeria is not an easy country to rule. Nigerians are not an easy people to govern. True, it is not the biggest country in the world, and neither is it the most populous. The country has its idiosyncrasies. The sight and sound and flavor of Nigeria are unlike any anywhere in the global estate. Even the wind blows differently. With over 350 ethnic groups spread over a land twice the size of California, Nigeria can be daunting. Every Nigerian thinks he or she can solve the country’s problems. They think they know better than their rulers and their neighbors. They think they are a better judge of character and that they are better suited to manage the nation’s vast and enviable human and material resources.
Nigerians are a strange breed of people. If you didn’t know any better you’d think every Nigerian is an economist, political scientist, medical doctor, philosopher, dramatist and financial mogul of some sort. Every Nigerian is a Chief, an Alhaji or Alhaja or honorable this and honorable that. Every Nigerians household has a thief, a bastard, and a dented and lost soul. It is also true that every household has a genius, a sage, and the likeness of angels and the shadow of God residing within their home. You cannot truly explain the country away. It is at once perplexing and simple; rich and poor; smelly and sweet-smelling. Nigeria is a land of many colors and many contradictions. Lost. Found. Unknown.
It is a country where zealot rogues and some of the most enterprising people anywhere on the face of the earth reside. Nigeria has it all. Nigerians hate and love their country; they exploits and vandalizes their own country, yet, Nigerians are some of the most patriotic people you will ever find. They love and hate their country with equal zeal. Historically, some have referred to Nigeria as the “mistake of 1914;” politically, some think of it as the “sleeping giant.” Because it is a country that defies all labels, it is safe to say that Nigeria and Nigerians are different: a different breed of people that confounds all deities.
If you have never been to Nigeria, please find time to do so. Come wet your appetite or partake in its effronteries and luxuries. There is enough decadence and holiness to go around.If you don’t have a Nigerian friend, please, hurry, he or she will enrich your life; he or she will take you through several stanzas of epiphanies. And if you’ve never lived in Nigeria, oh, please, do so before you die. Nigeria is a land of wonders and wonderful experiences. If you think America is the land of dreams and diamonds, believe me when I tell you: Nigeria is the land of possibilities, a land of promise and infinite potentials.
All the world’s religion and faiths with their assorted Mosques and Churches and Temples and Shrines converge in Nigeria. All the world’s culture and people and systems congregate in a land that was once a collection of emirates, kingdoms, wondering groups of farmer and fishermen and cattle ranchers. It is quite possible that Nigeria was the beginning of time and mankind. And why not? It is all there. It is all there. It is all there in Nigeria. Whatever you want and desire is right there in Nigeria.
No matter what people may say or think of Nigeria and Nigerians, it is about the only country and the only people others lust after. Most cannot help themselves. Rain or shine they come to Nigeria in search of promise and possibilities. Sadly, most Nigerians are oblivious of these facts so they go to other lands in search of the mirage.