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BN Hot Topic: Get Me Out of Here!

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In the past week I’ve been obsessed with getting curls into my hair. After watching almost 3o YouTube videos on products and Bantu knots and twists, I can categorically say that I am an expert in this part of hair manipulation. Unfortunately, my hair has refused to look like the ones in the videos, the curls have refused to form.  Anyway, in the course of trying to unravel why my hair won’t just obey the laws of the YouTube instructors, I blurted out to my friend that I just need to relocate to America. Maybe then, my hair will adapt to the atmosphere there because that seems to be the only difference between me and my YouTube lecturers… abi?

Actually, the issue of what makes people relocate to and from Nigeria is something that always piques my interest.  Running a random sample of why people move back to Nigeria, I’ve gotten an interesting range of responses. The most common of them is “there is MONEY in Nigeria.” Some people said they moved back because they were tired of living in temperate regions and the true patriots say they came back to implement the CHANGE they’e longed to see so badly in Nigeria.

Interestingly, you hear such things and still hear of people committing suicide just because there’s a possibility that they might be deported. On the contrary, every day you also hear of people who are trying so hard to emigrate because of the harsh realities of living in Nigeria. The inadequate power supply, security issues, lack of infrastructure, corruption, ignorance and the complete steeping of the mindset of the people in religious beliefs makes one wonder if Nigeria is really the green, buoyant place some people perceive it to be.

To people who say there’s a lot of money to be made in Nigeria, I often respond that a lot of times, you’re spending that money on providing amenities for yourself which ideally shouldn’t be the case in a system that works. My cousin who lives in Chicago keeps complaining about how she badly wants to move back to Nigeria because it is home and she feels like a second-class citizen. With the loud buzzing sounds of the generators all around me, I say to her that she’s always welcome home.

Honestly guys, what do you think? Is Nigeria really it’s wrapped up to be? For those who are here, do you want to run away? You guys abroad, do you want to move back to Nigeria? If so, why?

If you have moved back to Nigeria, tell us why you did it and if you are happy with your decision. If you went abroad to school, would you move back to Nigeria if you didn’t have immigration restrictions.  Did you move back because you absolutely had to or because you had no choice.

Let’s discuss!

Photo Credit: hellobeautiful.com

You probably wanna read a fancy bio? But first things first! Atoke published a book titled, +234 - An Awkward Guide to Being Nigerian. It's available on Amazon. ;)  Also available at Roving Heights bookstore. Okay, let's go on to the bio: With a Masters degree in Creative Writing from Swansea University, Atoke hopes to be known as more than just a retired foodie and a FitFam adherent. She can be reached for speechwriting, copywriting, letter writing, script writing, ghost writing  and book reviews by email – [email protected]. She tweets with the handle @atoke_ | Check out her Instagram page @atoke_ and visit her website atoke.com for more information.

128 Comments

  1. vbaby

    May 9, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    ”Who no go no know” me dey find how i wan take come back to , Naija come join politics dey enjoy myself na im another person dey fine how e wan take comot from Naija. “Different strokes for different folks” shikena!

    • molly

      May 9, 2013 at 7:42 pm

      I studied in uk and im currently serving. ild move to canada after my service to pursue my masters and i plan on staying there afterwards.

  2. Hilda

    May 9, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    I moved back to Nigeria January 2013 after almost 6 years livng in the UK and its been a blessing.

    I think it depends on the indicvidual. Each one have to determine what is important to them.
    For some like me they are happier in Nigeria and for some its living outside Nigeria. I know Nigerians in the UK who have sworn that they will never return but then that is their decision and if it makes them happy. Each to their own!

  3. iamfascinating

    May 9, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Nigeria has loads of opportunities hidden in problems. May God open our eyes.

    • intheoverseas

      May 9, 2013 at 10:37 pm

      I see you are finding you own “opportunity” with skin “problems” of Nigerian women eh? :p

  4. Nwachidinma

    May 9, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    I want to move back because because i have little kids and childcare in the US is expensive.

  5. Priscy

    May 9, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    I love my country (Nigeria) to bits….would love to vacation in other countries but nothing like home.

  6. jcsgrl

    May 9, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    Atoke dear, a few typos on this paragraph
    running a random sample of why people move back to Nigeria, I’ve gotten an interest range of responses. The most common of them is “there is MONEY in Nigeria.” Some people said they moved back because they were tired of living in temperate regions and the true patriots say they came back to implement the CHANGE they’e longed to see so badly in Nigeria.
    On to the topic, honestly it depends on what is important to you in a place and your purpose in life. Nigeria is not for everybody just like America is not for everybody. I’ve been fortunate to live in both worlds and I can say there is good and bad. For me, my friends in America marvel at how I left the comforts of US to live in Nigeria. I lived the life of an expat in Nigeria so I can’t really say I’ve experienced the harsh realities of nja per se so my assessment can be biased. I’ll most likely be on the team of there’s money to be made in Nja. Bottomline, each place has something to offer depending on what you’re looking for, what is important to you and what God has you at either places for

  7. Cee's

    May 9, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    Moved back home cause didn’t want to raise my kids abroad.( they go to the American school but they are very Nigerian and know it)

  8. Bukky

    May 9, 2013 at 3:24 pm

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  9. PrivateChicka

    May 9, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    I was born and raised in the US, but I call naija my home! Whether I am in town for business or holiday, as soon as I land my heart just melts, I am HAPPY, and at ease. It is hard to put in words the way I feel each time I land in Nigeria. Though I cannot stand the inadequate power supply, corruption, and unprofessional-ism I witness all the time I can honestly say I love naija and would love to moved back in the next few years. Some of my reasons for wanting to move back:
    1. I have great business & career opportunities & the right connects in my fields
    2. Not only because there is money in Nigeria but also because you can enjoy your money much better than you can here (the cost of living “well” is not as high as it is here )
    3. I would love to be one of the first people to make a drastic and historical change to our healthcare system
    4. I want to be closer to my friends & family
    And the list goes on…
    I have had many opportunities to move back but I am waiting on God I know it is not that time yet…

  10. Bleed blue

    May 9, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    I want to move back to Nigeria. I just haven’t figured out why.

  11. CynthiaA

    May 9, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    If I had extremely wealthy parents or if my husband was stinkly rich, I would move back. This would sound like a very shallow response which is ironic because I am quite level headed and practical. But sometimes I wish I had a driver or someone to send on errands, or wish I could eat dodo and peppered snail stew without having to fry the plantain myself. I wish I had nannies to help with the children. I wish I could see my parents every week. I wont lie I want Nigeria to change but that is not my biggest driver for wanting to move back. I like my life here, I love my friends and family and church. I like knowing where my hubby is all the time, not worried about him being influenced by ‘the way life is done in Naija’. But when people say there’s money to be made, I guess Naija is the one place where you can be a pauper today and wake up a millionaire tomorrow because one deal/contract has come through. When you are very rich, you are very rich. Whereas here most people are comfortable, fairly comfortable but not balling Naija wealthy club style..I also feel your cousin, Id would love to work in a company where everyone is like me, where I am not making an effort to speak clearly and a bit slower so that people understand me… etc. Would I more back now? No. The stress is too much, electricity, traffic, heat, bribery and corruption, do you know who I am, etc. If I was Folorunsho Alakija’s pikin, Id be there like yesterday 🙂

    • tatafo

      May 9, 2013 at 7:53 pm

      Nne, I so feel you!

    • Miss Anonymous

      May 10, 2013 at 9:33 am

      😀 @ “do you know who I am”. I moved back in 2003 and looking back sometimes I wonder why I did. Nigeria is a land of opportunities. Like someone rightly said, you can go to bed a pauper and wake up a multibillionaire because your Uncle Goodluck became president overnight. Now the problem with this kind of mentality is that it makes us desire ‘overnight wealth’ and other such get rich quick means. Yoruba people especially like the adage “ise kekere, owo nla”, meaning “small work, big money”. I don’t know about you but to me, that is synonymous with laziness. Nigeria is one of the few countries I know of where hard work and dedication do not necessarily guarantee there’ll be food on your table. Also there is such a wide gap betwen the haves and the have nots with the haves not wanting the havenots to join their circle.
      Everyone is also very class conscious. I know of people who live in that water logged Parkview Estate in Ikoyi (which to me is a glorified slum turned high brow area), who call those in Lekki ‘nouveau riche’. Tell me what’s the difference? How can I buy a house for N100million and when it rains I can’t step out of the house because the whole place is flooded? I also know of people who live in Ikoyi who seriously frowned on the construction of the new bridge to Lekki just because they didn’t want ‘gbogbo ero’ in their ‘hood. We are so shallow and the level of materialism is scary. I think a lot of us are so scared of the intense poverty we see around us that we will do virtually anything it takes to be rich.
      Nigerians in Nigeria also have a lot of misplaced priorities. Our government is the only one I know of that spends less than 20% of its budget on health and education which are key factors for growth in any economy. The NUC continues to approve the establishment of all sorts of mushroom “private universities” whilst the government ones which should be model places of learning are left to rot! We continue to depend on our dwindling oil revenues as the sole source of sustaining our weak economy while other countries like to USA (one of our major crude oil buyers) plans to reduce the quantity of our oil that they buy to less than 10% by 2015. We are blessed with so many other natural resources and good farm land, yet we have failed to take advantage of all this. If there’s a coup tomorrow, we are finished because the new class of rich people who have benefitted immensley from politics will suddenly be thrown out of “business”.
      Nigeria is the only place I know of where we lack a maintenance culture and mediocrity has become the order of the day. I was at the old domestic airport in Lagos last week, which incidentally was just newly renovated, and all I can say was that it is an eye sore. The celings were so shoddily done, the newly painted walls were already dirty, everything just looked cheap and rushed.
      We have a very long way to go and the truth is we don’t seem to realize it.

    • Diya

      May 12, 2013 at 5:22 am

      We don’t like to hear the truth. Development to Nigerians means increasing the amount of plazas, “eateries” and shops, planting trees and flowers on the road, pinging, importing those 22 inch mess that we call weaves/wigs, access to that slow ass internet, etc.
      I want to shuttle between where I am and Nigeria. They both offer the things that I want. Simply bring those things from obodo oyinbo that Nigerians have seen on TV and Nigerians are happy and then use it to single out the posh people from the razz ones. Also, bring something “awesome” from “Africa” to these people here and they will pay good money for it. They don’t have passports therefore it is good for them to experience a little bit of “Africa”.

  12. Uyokei Jerry

    May 9, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    that quiet an expensive movie

  13. Lecker

    May 9, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    the problems are relative no doubt. I relocated cos of the recession, issues abound in both, though very relative.
    Despite prevailing issues, Everyone always still finds time to laugh and have fun, no toothy smiles. I have been on the bus on several occasions and sometimes we carry- on such entertaining and informative conversations when we barely knew each other from Adam. I am so thankful like most Nigerians for small mercies. The community spirit is so amazing and electric that even on xmas day I don’t need to be out to be in the spirit of the season.
    We had my brother’s wedding recently, himself and the wife barely lifted a finger, because the wedding became everybody’s business, we couldn’t hide our excitement at the thought of planning and partying and the at the thought of seeing family and friends. Some misconstrue this, thinking we are loud, but let’s just say we are EXPRESSIVE! We don’t set limits for ourselves, nor the system (which has its bad sides) or get “depressed and drunk” so easily, the warmth and the vibrancy is just so electric. This wasn’t the case at my cousin’s, it was so routine and mechanical. We were practically begging people to come and every now and again somebody steals a look at his/her wrist watch, obviously trying to catch up with some appointment, do I blame them – absolutely not. The system though works, can be cold and also make the folks within it cold, everyone has got a bill to pay!

    Looking forward to holidaying soon, but I’ll sure be very glad to be back home to 9ja where anything and everything is possible LWKMD!

  14. Amazeballs!

    May 9, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    BN, you guys use the term “hot topic” very loosely!

  15. PLUSH & LUSH

    May 9, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    There’s just something about being in your own house, space, country etc. After six years of living abroad (the US) surrounded by the things that are so basic there (uninterrupted power, good rroads, hospitals and all that) but seem like luxuries here, I still maintain that there is no place like home. When u go to a ‘big’ man’s house, you might be awed and wowed by the opulence,even wish you were living in such a place, but at the end of d day after eating and drinking and gaping at all the extravagance, the urge to go back to your humble apartment must come because you realise that it is the only place in the world where you really feel free. That’s the only place where you can break a plate and not feel like u committed the worse crime. It is back home in Nigeria that I can say ‘Do you know me?’When I really don’t know anybody and go unscathed. In the US, who send you?

  16. Daisy

    May 9, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    although there was a bit of sanity, no light issues, less ignorance etc i got tired of not saving enough, tax today, tax tomorrow, got bored with the same working routine every day and depending on just salary and i never had enough family members to make it feel like home, friends left, got lonely, i miss the climate conditions, but aside from that, there are more opportunities to venture into whilst acquiring a job in the motherland than the other.

  17. Zero

    May 9, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    Naija na brickwall men…..

  18. Anon

    May 9, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    gats marry na.. moving back in Sept. whoop whoop.

  19. Neo

    May 9, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Na who wear shoe, know where e dey pinch am oh. I have lived in Nigeria all my life apart from a one yeear stint in the UK doing my masters. The only allure the UK holds for me is the great shopping and the food and Starbucks! I did not enjoy chasing buses down the road or riding in cramped underground trains grunging against smelly people. I missed my car and driving down the street to buy matches from Aboki. I mean there were major pluses like superspeed internet and constant electricity but i think what scared me most about making a life there was the hamster in the spinner attitude I seemed to see evrywhere, forget that life in Naija is a struggle oh, there are people seriously struggling abroad. I stayed with an aunt who used to dry her teabag and use it again and buy only food that dancing the waltz with its sell-by date. She had a job and occasional babysitting gigs so i didnt get it. How many of them can save money and buy land and start building homes? Here i know guys in their twenties who are building their homes.

    The long and short of all this my tory is that Naija is hard, yes i know but then again life is hard when you’re not a Kardashian.

    • Anne

      May 9, 2013 at 6:36 pm

      Your Aunt clearly had issues cos food isnt that a big deal in the UK. She was saving to buy expensive lace frm Liverpool St to impress her mates during social gatherings. whoever re-use tea bags? Scary!

    • Purpleicious Babe

      May 9, 2013 at 9:16 pm

      LOL…. uses teabags?? when there is TESCO, ASDA and Sainsburys value… for 10p or so i couldn’t laugh myself..

      lifeinstagesdoz.blogspot.co.uk/

    • Thatgidigirl

      May 9, 2013 at 6:53 pm

      LMAO @ teabag! can’t stop laughing abeg

  20. Jelly

    May 9, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    hmmm…commentaries from only those who wanna move back..how abt those who wanna move out ? 🙂

  21. Mz Socially Awkward...

    May 9, 2013 at 5:17 pm

    “To people who say there’s a lot of money to be made in Nigeria, I often respond that a lot of times, you’re spending that money on providing amenities for yourself which ideally shouldn’t be the case in a system that works.”

    Aint that the truth… However, my very selfish reason for wanting to move back is to make that MONEY. I no wan die while fighting for change that 98% of the populace don’t really care about and, for very similar reasons, I’ve no interest in politics.

    So I’ll be coming back just for the money, thank you very much & that also explains the reason I left in the first place – to acquire some quality education + industry experience that would justify my price tag when I return 🙂 (although, I hear those HR chicks in Naija no dey like to see the CVs of returnees…)

  22. nomad

    May 9, 2013 at 5:21 pm

    moved back a year ago after ten years away. planning to leave sharp sharp as soon as I can find an opportunity.

    • lola

      May 9, 2013 at 7:27 pm

      LMAO!

    • ij

      May 10, 2013 at 9:36 am

      As in eh ROTFLMAO

  23. Didi

    May 9, 2013 at 5:24 pm

    I moved to the UK less than a week after my secondary school graduation and at first, I missed home desperately, especially the sun. 5 years later, I could not imagine living in Nigeria again. A decade later within me I just found this calling for home. Just as PrivateChicka said, everywhere you go you call Naija your home. I would look for any reason to be home. Sure, the power supply sucks along with many other things that could be better but where else can you feel like you really are yourself? There are so many silly things you think about when you live abroad that makes you wonder, is it really worth it? I have met people that have settled abroad but their children cannot speak one word of Yoruba/Ibo or Hausa and yet they bear the names. Those children grow up, go home for a visit and they wish that they were taught their language.
    For all those that have left and never want to return, I understand because they have experience Nigeria at its worst so good luck to them.
    For me the pros of moving home far outweighed whatever benefits you have living abroad.
    I have now lived in the UK for more than 10 years and have finally decided to move home this year. Of course there are the nay sayers telling me to remain where I am but only I know how I feel, only I can feel the draw and only God could have made this move possible.
    No matter what you feel about naija, no matter what passports you pick up, whether red or blue, you will always first be identified by your heritage. You are Nigerian first and every other nationality is secondary.
    Naija all the way because there is simply no place like home.

  24. ami

    May 9, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    @Atoke, if your hair has a 4c or higher curl pattern,the curls u will almost never match most those you see on youtube without the help of a curlformer, rollers etc ( Irrespective of climate) . I get the best definition on freshly washed hair ( with leave conditioner).

  25. Ready

    May 9, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    I moved back because I couldn’t stand the racism and other social inequalities in America..e.g. if you get sick or your tooth breaks or something, and don’t have insurance, you’re pretty much doomed. Poor education in African American areas, higher crime rates, even the cinemas and grocery stores and restaurants differ between immigrant/poor African American areas. If I’m gonna have to see all that and be moved to fix things by volunteering for charities like Habitat for Humanity and donating to Goodwill, why not do that in my country? This country is going to change for the better, and I was blessed to get a job where I can be directly involved in preparing for a revolution.
    Also, there were fewer jobs while the recession was raging, and there were more opportunities in Nigeria. Plus, it seems different for awon Redeem Church people who keep meeting husband material at conventions, but meeting Naija guys who are ready for serious relationships (not necessarily marriage) in many American cities was a loong thing.
    And I missed ewa agonyin and ofada rice…do you know how expensive Indomie and yam and co are? Those weren’t major reasons…but it tied into cost of living. The cost of living well and relatively stress-free in Naij is cheaper than in many urban cities in the US. So I figured home it is. When I read the papers or see the price of kiwis and asparagus at Shoprite, I sometimes want to move back (dude, kiwis are so expensive in Naij!) but then I see dirt cheap avocados and what Lagos has to offer, and am able to be at milestone events in my loved ones’ lives and I’m good again.

    • Tolu

      May 9, 2013 at 10:18 pm

      Like you read my mind. Just small leg pain I had to co-pay o. Even for the Pain killer. So, why do I pay insurance? I wake everyday to thank God for good health because this ppl love money and can send you letters reminding you of your unpaid deductible. OMG! America is probably overrated and the guy talk, u no lie. To find husband, na die. Infact, you just may be settling cause of fear of no spouse. I miss Nigeria. For those who still want to relocate, it may work well for some so I don’t like to discourage people but for me. I am here but miss home so much.

  26. whocares

    May 9, 2013 at 7:03 pm

    I dont know actually.. I certainly do not want to die where I am now, but I think moving back to Nigeria at this point in my life would be career suicide. I also dont think id fit in well. tbh I dont fit in well here either so im stuck being the weirdo in between. Aside from the ordinary nigerian problems, I dont think I can live with the way people are so judgemental, I purposely joined bella naija because it is as close as i get to relating with everyday nigerians except the ones I went to secondary school with, and man the way some people think scares me, and I have very definite ideas such as I support the LGBT but I cannot say that to the hearing of one of my Nigerian kin, they would douse me with holy water. I also cant take the fact that half the people I talk to are just sooo frivolous and have no ..whats the word im looking for?.. I think the system has beaten them down and so they dont dream big and all they want to do is party and be swaggerific (maybe I need more friends I dunno) and gods know that sort of lethargy is not conducive for progress… I can handle the generator, heat, traffic (afterall I was born in it) but I think I would only go back permanently if I have achieved something for myself career wise and made a name for myself.. true say about having money as well.. I am still a very broke student, I cannot afford to move back and be drinking garri o. loool. eventually I would want to come back to Nigeria (naija is swweeeeet according to my cousins who moved back last year) .. things need to be changed, and I have a big enough mouth, and a bag full of opinion 🙂

    • UNOS

      May 10, 2013 at 8:08 am

      You could not have said it any better, especially for the attitude and thinking pattern of most Nigerians, the younger generation/youth in particular. They have lost all hope in fighting to be better and lost in some sought of “FALSE ENTERTAINMENT KIND OF LIFE AND THOUGHT”. As for the LGBT issue in Nigeria, most have refused to see the difference between the act itself and the person. I know one day Nigeria will be great.

  27. fofobaby

    May 9, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    Yes pls get me outta here

  28. ms blaize

    May 9, 2013 at 7:34 pm

    IF U R NOT IN THE OIL/GAS INDUSTRY, BANKING/ ACCOUNTING, HAVE A SUBSTANTIAL AMOUNT OF MONEY TO START SOMETHING TANGIBLE DON’T GO HOME UNTIL YOU ARE PREPARED. THERE IS MONEY IN ONLY CERTAIN FIELDS. TO MAINTAIN A CERTAIN STANDARD OF LIFE IN NIGERIA U GOTTA BE MAKING GOOD CHHESE.

  29. Tin can

    May 9, 2013 at 7:43 pm

    Somehow in my head I think I should want to be in Nigeria but for where I am right now, Nigeria holds little appeal for some reason. With a young family it doesn’t feel like the right time to move but more than that, I think my true reason for staying in the UK is, I don’t think I’ll make it in NAija. I have to be the most useless hustler there is. The price I am paying on the other hand is having to live middle class life in the UK. No nannies, no house help, no gateman, na me bi all of them; no fully paid off house; common 500k house is raising my blood pressure unnecessary lol.

    I think the important thing is to be where God has called you to be/where you are happiest. As I no fit hustle and haven’t ‘heard a word’, UK it is. In the meantime, i quite like dipping in and out tho.

  30. Partyrider

    May 9, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    After med school and probably after my specialisation , I am home bound.
    For me it’s all about my passion and calling. There’s so much I want to give and there’s no place I would rather do that than home.
    I was thinking the other day,the lack of structure in some areas actually makes life easy in Naija: I was thinking of how to take my shoe to the cobbler and I just imagined that if I were in Naija,I will just wait for the ‘shoemaker’ to pass by the street and call him with a scream,without having to cross bridges and rivers to go to a cobbler’s shop.This example may probably sound silly,but it’s the little things really. And these random,hilarious and even frustrating things/events is what makes Naija bearable even when it’s a failed state. The energy in that country is next to none,best believe.
    After all said and done,home is home.

    • Bukie

      May 9, 2013 at 11:36 pm

      Geeez, when last when you in Naija? There are Cobbler stores in Naija. It’s not every shoe you take to a Shoemaker o. There is only so much Shoemakers can fix.

    • Partyrider

      May 10, 2013 at 9:52 am

      Lol..you missed my point,in fact you just implied the opposite of what I was saying..
      Here you don’t have ‘shoemaker’ knocking that their box walking down the street,which means that no matter how small what you want to fix is,you still have to make a trip to the cobbler’s shop. In Naija it’s not the case. A small glue,polish or to sew you can call the guy walking down the street.
      Disclaimer: again this is probably a silly example. But it’s the little things

  31. Unreturnee

    May 9, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    Let me see. Will I ever move back? NO, and these are my reasons.
    1. I am from a very very average background. I did the whole nine yards, primary school, secondary govt boarding house (model college) and that was the last time merit entered my case. To get into University was leg. Kilode. Jamb means nothing, you must know someone to know someone. Enter Uni, lecturers telling you, you can’t get one mark because of some silly issues or sleep with them a. In the UK I got my Masters admission on merit, i have never seen Heathrow before. I got admission into one of the top 10 Universities and I worked hard and finished with a Distinction on my own steam. You will never get that in 9ja, me the child of nobody.
    2. Job hunting in 9ja – I know how long I stayed at home for, my father is a nobody. The 2 jobs I ended up getting before I left, my parents had to go beg one Uncle so so so. b. I finished my MSc and applied for jobs, yes it took me a few months (waaaaaaaay shorter than in 9ja), but I didn’t need to go beg anyone. This girl a daughter of nobody got two job offers one in an Investment Bank in Canary Wharf, the other an Oil company. I picked the Oil company. This will NEVER happen in Nigeria for a child from my social class. For those who know the UK tax system, I became a 40% tax payer in 1yr of working full time in the UK. At the rate I’m going and by God’s Grace I will be a 50% tax payer in less than 10years. This will never happen in 9ja. Like Never if you don’t have connections. I have gotten promoted twice now on my own merit. I get favourable performance reviews and no boss has ever had any sexual advances to me.

    • Bleed blue

      May 10, 2013 at 9:16 am

      Oh PREEEEEAAAAACH!!!!

      I’m just like you except for the fact that my family is a little bit (little bit oh!) influential. Having said that, I moved to the UK for a masters degree, and I work in the oil industry too. You don’t want to try the number of promotions I’ve got just on my own merit. And God be praised I’m also a 40% tax payer….so yeah I know what you mean…wink wink… 🙂

      If I was in Naija, I’d have had to beg mummy and daddy to talk to uncle to help me enter one company somewhere. And even at that, from what I hear from my pals back home, in many (not all) work places, you have to cross all kinds of “Naija-flavoured” work politics hurdles, and sometimes sexual advances before you can move up the career ladder.

      Abeg I know myself, I no get power, if you try to touch my behind while I’m passing your desk, I will use my well manicured nails to give you tribal marks.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      May 10, 2013 at 11:07 am

      @Bleedblue… what you said about someone touching your behind at the workplace just brought back some bad memories of when I started working, fresh outta law school in Naija.

      Was employed by a law firm, definitely one of the best in the town I lived in and therefore a dream role for any brand new barrister. However, the office was run by this BEAST of an office manager who sexually harrassed me from the get-go. It all started with the usual “fine gal” comments and then gradually progressed more sinister advances. I mean the man was a terror in my life and this was the first job I’d ever had so I didn’t know what to do, didn’t feel I could make any complaints to the owner of the firm and more importantly, I felt ashamed! Ashamed oh, for another man’s evildoing. The height of my harrassment was the day I was unfortunate enough to be left in the office with him one day and THE ANIMAL casually brushed his fingers across my nipples.

      Even typing this, I still feel the hot shame, the embarrasment, the disgust. That was the day I broke free of my fear and screamed at him but I still couldn’t report him to anyone in the office, dude was practically a czar there. I think the only real threat I had in my arsenal then was that I was going to report him to my boyfriend who would roundly beat him up. Imagine, that’s what stopped my harrasment and he never touched me again. I never told anyone that I worked with because it was an office mainly populated by men and I didnt want any loss of respect in the eyes of those I worked with (before the story go change when dem begin mis-yarn amongst themselves). And there was no recourse to employee grievance procedures as the Office Manager was also the HR Manager, so go figure….

    • Neo

      May 10, 2013 at 9:36 am

      Errm, I like your testimony and all oh but you CANNOT make general assumptions based on your own situation. The silver spoon in my family had rusted by the time i was born so i had to work very hard for what i wanted. I made good grades in school, got into uni finished with a 2:1 both for my LL.B and B.L and i had a lot of friends like that. We didnt go beg anybody or sleep with anybody for good grades. After school, I cant think of one classmate who was close to me that didnt get a job. I got two great jobs within 3 months after graduation and I’m currently on my third job. I know Nigeria isnt easy but I believe if you work hard, silver spoon or not you will make it. Before anyone starts about the graduates with first class still roaming the streets, I can tell you of the difference between book smart and street smart. I know a guy who graduated with a masters distinction and first class in his first degree who stalked a major CEO sold himself, offered to work on probation for three months without pay. By the second month he was retained as a full staff and bumped up two levels up from entry. Today he has the ear of his oga who doesnt take any decision without consulting him, managers come to him for advice.

      My point is that your case is not necessarily the template for all the “have-nots” It is subjective.

    • Bolu

      May 10, 2013 at 11:12 am

      @Neo your case is a very very very small minority, and what year did you graduate please in comparison with the millions who graduated the year that you did. In trying to say your case was different, you have shown no sympathy to the rest who the system has condemned because their fathers are not big men. For every Naija graduate that got jobs on merit, thousands got their jobs through connection. That is a fact if you want to be objective. Go to Europe, Canada and America and it is the reverse. Those that get jobs based on connections are A MINORITY. So, what is your point again? Nigeria needs to be a country where MERIT IS THE ORDER OF THE DAY, and the high lifestyle is not given to only the select few. @Miss Anonymous above sums it up nicely. Abi are you enjoying the same electricity as Aso Rock? All countries have classes no doubt but Nigeria’s case is just totally shameful. I go to the areas I grew up in and I can’t beleive how I escaped such a life.

    • Hilda

      May 10, 2013 at 4:18 pm

      I totally agree. I think you put it better than i did

    • jcsgrl

      May 10, 2013 at 1:00 pm

      OMG!!! Are you guys really praising God for being taxed 40 and 50% of your income. Ok oh! Mehn nja it is! My tax was less than 10%

    • Bleed blue

      May 10, 2013 at 3:06 pm

      Noooooooooooooooo sweetie, you don’t get it. that’s why Unreturnee said “for those who know the UK tax system”

      We’re not praising the tax, it’s the tax band we’re referring to. The UK taxes earnings on a sliding scale (not sure if it’s the same in Naija) and your tax bracket is therefore a reflection of how much you earn. So what we mean is we earn an annual figure high enough to be placed in the “40%” band.

      However, this is not to say the entire salary is taxed at 40% oh. As I said, it’s on a sliding scale so the first “X” thousand of your annual salary is tax free, then you get taxed a certain percentage when you earn any amounts in excess of that “X” thousand up to a ceiling, and then the excess on top of that celing is then taxed 40%. As you go higher in earnings, the scale continues to apply up to 50%.

      But make I no lie, I envy that your 10% sha! BUT I know if I was back home with this enviable tax you’re on, I would still spend a chunk of the salary on amenities we get here with the taxes paid.

      Essentially it brings us back to the question, to return or not to return? 🙂

  32. Unreturnee

    May 9, 2013 at 8:02 pm

    3. A sense of Equality. I remember I used to look at my friends from wealthy families and wish I even had one tenth of what they had access to. I mean they can take it for granted daddy signing cheques for hols abroad or uni abroad, my parents sold and sold and borrowed to send me here, and I am grateful that their garri has turned to filet mignon. My 1st ever trip abroad was for school, and since I started working, I have been to every continent including Australia on holidays. In all my working in 9ja Obudu cattle ranch sef I no fit. (b) If you don’t have a rich dad or family connections you are nobody in 9ja. (c). I bought my first car brand new in exactly 1yr after work, in my whole years working in 9ja i couldn’t even save for Tokunbo. My dad cried the day I told him I bought a car, he said the last new car he ever drove was in the 70’s and he used that car for almost 20years. Their very first trip here I paid business class for the both of them. Where I for see am in 9ja if I am not sleeping with some Aristo. By my second year of working, I got a mortgage and I dropped a very hefty deposit. There is no one I know who left Unilag the same year or even older in 9ja that are still not paying rent. I live in my own house and I rented out 2 rooms to professionals. What i collect in rent is almost time 2 of my monthly mortgage payment so I am basically living for free except that I have a plan to pay off the mortgage very quickly so I make over payments.
    4. It saddens me, anytime I go home and I see the suffering. The people who have money, the ruling class don’t care. Here at least even on your minimum wage job you have a decent roof over your head. Your neighbourhood may not be pretty or safe, but in your house you are safe. You have the same access to electricity as the person living in Buckingham Palace. You have the same access to good clean water, you have the same access to internet. You may not have Sky or Virgin or whatever, but there is good Freeview or Freesat to watch. You have access to your GP and can be referred to a bigger hospital. In 9ja for where, you no get money na General Hospital. Your kids, your family can die of neglect and lack of adequate medical care. Your kids get to go to schools which provide at least a decent education. It is up to the child and the parents what you make of it. You CANNOT say the same about the schools the poor man’s children go to in 9ja. Even the middle class in 9ja, private school get levels, everywhere, everywhere is private school. Many millions of naira schools provide the same level of education you get in a government school here. Whether you live in the highlands or in London, your child has access to a decent school. The system provides to a large extent some equality. My boss grew up in Brixton, and he earns 6 figures now, his kids are at school in Eton and Wycombe Abbey (£30K a year). The majority of my colleagues came from humble backgrounds, a lot of them are the first graduates in their entire family. At least the system let them go to university via student loans. What you make of it is left to you but at least they provided something to give you a chance to better yourself. Poor man’s kids don’t get to go Universities, and even if they do, they come out with no jobs, while their mates with connections, even people who are not as good get jobs before them. Yes nepotism and rich men’s children have more advantages, but unlike 9ja advantages are also offered to children from the poor and middle class.

  33. Unreturnee

    May 9, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    5. Food. Food is sooooo expensive in 9ja To eat well is war. My mother told me that a derrica of beans is now N200. I almost cried. Beans that was poor man’s food. Many children go to bed now with no meat or fish in their meals because their parents can’t afford it. Even eggs are expensive. Here I’m back to a sense of equality. Whether you have a £5 budget for food or a £500 budget you will still see food to buy to suit your pocket. They have Value ranges. Clothes nko, As you have Karen Millen you have Primark, and even though primark is cheap, there is a standard. Poor people are not given trash. There is room to cut your cloth according to your size.
    6. Respect irrespective of social standing. I love the UK for this. You cannot talk to a cleaner anyhow, or a ticket collector or bus driver. You will be prosecuted. In 9ja, the way people look at, treat and talk to the lowly ones in society is disgusting. Just because he doesn’t have money or class, you bully him, insult him, disrespect him. You only get respect if you have money. I can’t count the number of times big men were downright rude to me or my family, and I witness it everywhere. You will insult the girl at TFC, the cashier at the bank, the bus conductor, police officer. Try that here

  34. Unreturnee

    May 9, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    7. Cost of living – Cost of living is incredibly high in 9ja, higher than here. It is because by culture we live with our parents mostly, even guys. Ask married people how much they pay in rent, food, petrol for their cars, petrol for their generator, driver salary, housemaid salary, school fees, extra lesson, holidays, social events, clothes etc in proportion to their salaries (if you are not doing extra business o, or contracts), but here, with just your salary you can still live within your means on just your salary alone even little. You are not trying to impress anybodyThere are tax breaks for people on low incomes, all sorts of government help.
    8. Another reason why I cannot move back. I don’t think I can live in a country with no social welfare system. Yes they have abused it, but at least it exists for people who fall on hard times and disabled people. I gladly pay my taxes for this. If not for our culture of hope, our suicide rates would be through the roof.
    9. No redress or law – their legal system is not perfect but at least it tries. In 9ja a big man will get away with anything. Their children get away with misbehaving. An ex Minister in the UK just went to jail and his wife for lying about points some 10 or 15yrs ago. In 9ja for where.
    My parents have 5 children. 3 of us are in the UK. I paid immediate younger’s fees and as soon as he started working (son of nobody works in BoA), together we paid the fees of the 3rd child. The 4th child we all contributed to school fees and advised go to Canada because UK Immigration has stopped PSW. The fourth one will join her Sept next yr. That’s five of us gone. We the kids of nobody, we are now enjoying the life that our counterparts from rich homes enjoyed. A system that gave us a level playing field. We have all said that as soon as the last one travels our parents are leaving. With my status they can come live here, and we all will buy them a house to live just outside London so they can live their retirement years in peace, sanity and luxury. The kind of luxury despite all their decades of hard work they will never have experienced. I really cannot wait for them to relocate

  35. Unreturnee

    May 9, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    So, to many here, I am sure a lot come from very very good homes, where you can walk into business or jobs easily. Good example is the fashion industry. Look at the names and tick their pedigrees. Look at names in big banks and big oil companies. I’m sure there are loads of talents in 9ja with nothing to back it up. No access to bank loans or even grants. Go to western nations and you still have some chance at a help up the ladder. Yes the recession has affected things, but look at their history. My friend working for the council part time here, walked into a job in Central Bank Abuja the week she landed in 9ja. Plenty jobless graduates whose parents are nobodies, she worked into a millions of naira a year job. People with regular average incomes live in homes they own, albeit mortgaged. Decent decent homes, people with 200K a month salaries in 9ja can’t even live in. So when I hear people say there is money in 9ja, I just laugh. There is money for those who have connections to that money. Some may think oh I’ve painted the UK as paradise, it has its own share of problems, but it is the closest to paradise that I have experience when I compare it to the hell I suffered though in 9ja. If my siblings start listing their experiences too, they will say the same. With my experience I know I will get a great job but I wont relocate for all the money in the world. I love it here, I owe this country my life, I owe this system for giving me a chance at a better life, for rewarding my hard work, for giving me my American dream (even though it is UK), for giving my siblings the chance to escape poverty that our government has said we will always be due to the standing of our parents in society. I owe this place for giving my parents the chance to enjoy the fruit of their labour because I know I won’t take of them the way I am now if I still lived in 9ja. I pay my taxes with joy and no complaints. I have not lived here for up to a quarter of my life and what I have gained the 55 and 60+ years my parents lived there they haven’t achieved. I go home once a year, and by 1 week I am fed up. I don’t have much in common with the people I left behind, so there’s not that much to reminisce or talk about. The day my parents relocate, I may never set foot there again. Home to me is where the people I love are, and not geography. I don’t want my children to grow up in a society that will trample them or crush their spirit, neither a system that will demean and diminish them. i want them to grow up with aspirations, knowing that if they work hard nothing is within their reach. I also don’t want to raise kids who are snobbish and feel entitled because they think they are better than the kid who hawks pure water on the streets. Sorry Atoke, I just can’t.

    • nomad

      May 9, 2013 at 9:21 pm

      Thank you for this, your reasons are mostly mine. This is the same feeling I felt. I came back, totally became disillusioned, despite initially lucking into a well paid job, and I’m planning to leave already, despite being employed. If you don’t have connections or family money, it will be HARD for you here, I got my first sexual harassment experience here. Jobs are not that easy to come by, let no one deceive you. It’s not a friendly space for entrepreneurs, despite the untapped market everyone keeps harping about. It’s a shame because Nigeria sorely needs the brains but cannot accomodate them. And then everyone falls back into the trap of corruption, apathy and the like. I love this country but I’m not happy here.

      I’m VERY glad I came back though, I learnt lessons that will be in good use for the future. I’d also like to say that your mileage may vary. My siblings came back and they are happy and thriving and cannot imagine living anywhere else. Other people I’ve met also seem to be making it work here, somehow. I’m just itchy for a new life elsewhere.

    • Funke

      May 9, 2013 at 9:58 pm

      Unreturnee,
      Ha! You couldn’t have said it any better. Succinct points !!!

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      May 9, 2013 at 10:34 pm

      I’m all over what you said and no doubt you’re going to get jumped for preferring another man’s country because according to some Nigerian minds, “no matter what you say, you’ll always be a 2nd class citizen in another man’s land”… which reasoning has always been extremely porous to me because

      1. A lot of oyibos live in Nigeria right now, as in plenty oyibos that have completely refused to return to their own countries (even those 2 somewhat oyibo sisters who are always featured on BN… I’m not saying they’ve refuse to return to their own country, but you get my point). Are they treated as 2nd class citizens in Nigeria? Ehn? Are they? Why do we then cloak our own mentality with the belief that when the situation is in reverse, we’ll only ever be able to afford 2nd class citizen status?

      2. Oya, the 1st class citizens that exist in Nigeria, where is their reward? Yes, I’m waiting for any proponent of the 2nd-class-citizen theory to please show me stirling examples in response to my question…

      So, Unreturnee, I’m all over what you wrote. EXCEPT! Where you said this “Whether you live in the highlands or in London, your child has access to a decent school”. Ah Ah, na so highlands bad for una ears wey dey south? Stop am oh! Some topnotch, quality schools & institutions are available to those wey dey North oh! Abi you never hear of St. Andrews? 😉

    • slice

      May 9, 2013 at 11:24 pm

      Awww, I read your all story. It was just captivating. Without commenting on your thoughts about Nigeria versus the U.K, I just want to say I”m really happy things worked out well for you. You’re a success story and I truly pray that continues to be the case.

    • Ola

      May 9, 2013 at 11:26 pm

      Wow @ unreturnee. What a writeup! I totally agree with you 100%

    • whatever

      May 10, 2013 at 12:21 am

      Unreturnee, I cannot even agree with you more. God bless your hustle, you have said absolutely nothing but the truth. I myself just came to America two years ago to study, I had a 6 figure salary job before graduation !!! Nobody knows my name in this country oh ! The only thing I will complain about is the bout of loneliness here and there but just like you, I am already making plans for my sister to come here this year and once she settles, the next one will come. One by one, two by two. Dont mind yeye people saying cost of living in Nigeria is cheaper. What I pay for utilities in a month is less than what my family spends in fueling our generator. 10years from now, my opinion may change but it has to purely be to help my country. Return to Nigeria, return to poverty ni

    • whatever

      May 10, 2013 at 1:26 am

      I also forgot to mention. When I was in Nigeria, I was consistently a top student in my class. I never got 1naira as scholarship or even dreamed of getting one. Althou I am igbo, I am UNFORTUNATELY not from an oil producing student so I was OYO! I came to America, the only tuition I paid was the one I paid before I came here, that is first semester ni oh. After that I did not pay a dime in tuition, I went through school free of charge ! . This is a country where 99percent of the people cannot pronounce my name. Yet I was treated equally and with dignity. I really hope this inspires some1 reading this, if you are fed up of your situation (like I was 2 and half years ago), honey it may be time to believe yourself, study for the necessary exams and head out of Nigeria. I wont advise anyone to go to the UK right now, U will just waste fees and tuition with no hope of getting a job

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 7:39 am

      I know exactly what you are talking about because that is what happened to my sister in Canada. We wanted to pay the whole year at first and her friends there said no, pay one semester and let her come, she can work something out if her results are good. By semester 2 her bill dropped by 90%. I am not joking. My mother cried and cried and cried. Onward march the last born is going to join her Sept next year. That is what I mean by you get the tools to succeed without having to no anyone. Who we know for Canada? If I ask my dad, I’m sure none of his generation ever stepped foot there.

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 7:41 am

      *to know

    • Tunmi

      May 10, 2013 at 3:44 am

      I applaud you. I keep wondering who these people are because your words ring so true to me. I never got to experience University in Naija because I left for the US in secondary school but I fear for my siblings who are there and I plan to do the same thing…have them study here if Naija fails them.

      What you are saying is so true. The child of a poor person (even middle class sef) cannot get to that money in Naija without connections.

    • Amazeballs!

      May 10, 2013 at 9:29 am

      Wow! so inspired, God bless you Unreturnee!!!

  36. The Real Madam the Madam

    May 9, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    Well, I live in Yanks and have absolutely zero desire to relocate to Nigeria. Sure, it looks like some of them have money, and they have this really active social life, enough flexing etc etc. Not my cup of tea though.

    All these awon boys and girls that have relocated back home (to thier rich and well connected families) are always reaching out to me talking about “why are you still dulling and working 9-5, there is money to be made in Nigeria”. Ahn, they should leave me and my 9-5 o. I will probably never be a baller or an Island big babe, but I’m comfortable and it’s a blessing.

    I like the order that this country gives. I like how I can go to a store and return something even if I have used half a bottle. I love the customer service, I love the opportunities, education, constant light, fast internet, almost reliable transportation, shopping options, advanced healthcare, variety of life and plenty options for anything that you need, the list is endless. I personally do not feel like a second-class citizen in this country, or feel like I have to prove myself to people, or do extra because I’m originally from Nigeria.

    Yanks has its faults like every other place, but I’m good here. The extent of my Naija wandering at this point is the December visits which is always a lot of fun of course, you run into all your fellow “jus gat becks” and flex at the latest hot spot, but the little 2-3 weeks is good enough.

  37. sisieko

    May 9, 2013 at 9:30 pm

    hmmm .very interesting topic.I constantly have this war in my head whether to go back to naija or not considering my single status.The difference in between niaja and the U.S is life enjoyment.In the U.S you have all the conveniences of life but you might not really enjoy it.You can just live you life without having true friends and relationships unlike naija where you don’t enjoy life conveniences(safety, electricity etc) but you have relationships(good men,true friends,family).Anyways,I pray Naija gets developed and the system gets fixed ,then I think most people might go back because home is where the heart is :(. Till then Edumare bless me in the U.S and in Naija and give our Nigerian Leaders wisdom to know it is always good to build your country because you also will reap from it !

  38. lola

    May 9, 2013 at 10:01 pm

    HAHAHAHAHAHA! WELL SAID!! Your parents must be really proud of you guys.There is money in naija for those who are well connected! I’m so glad i had my residency card if not I for dey jones for naija after nysc.; the Dana air crash also nailed it for me. That week was the most depressing moment i’ve ever experienced in my life.

    Thanks unreturnee.

  39. Amo

    May 9, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    @ Unreturnee, now I fully understand why my husband (a Nigerian) will never move back either. He too is a child of a nobody. Thanks for putting it so well

  40. Jens

    May 9, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Na you know where shoe dey tight you. I have lived in naija and I have lived abroad. I was in Nigeria for three years and just moved back to the US with my family. I was frustrated in Nigeria bcos all the plans I had didn;t quite work out. Maybe there too high or too low. I hated the Nepa issue and couldn’t understand why its so difficult. I love naija bcos of the social scene, groove and all. But abeg let me come and gain all the skills I need and just maybe I’ll go back but it will be a while. I do miss home a lot but I not fit handle generators and bosses who didn’t have respect for strong women. I be naija true and true would go every year when possible sha

  41. Bibi' s battle of the weight

    May 9, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Wow…..am just speechless @ unreturnee.

  42. Sisi Yemmie

    May 9, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    I moved back last month and I must say…its not so bad in 9ja…I’m doing a vlog on this soon!

  43. Abimbola Dare

    May 9, 2013 at 11:55 pm

    I love the UK and I love Naija,
    The pluses of UK life for me: I have a job I love here, in an industry that isn’t as lucrative in Nigeria as it is here. I love the fact that life is somewhat predictable and sane. I like how it makes my hubby and I close ( the UK kinda does that to you because there is less social gatherings in the winter months, and in summer, na so so family bbqs). I love the libraries I have here and my small community of friends who try to get us to go on girly holidays once a year and hook up whenever to catch up on what we miss about Nigeria.
    The downsides to living abroad exist too: the boring, predictable life. lol. The lack of domestic help @ a cheap rate ( unless u can do work permit wahala and hire help from naija). The extended family “warm and fuzzy moments”, trips to villa, the authentic naija food, the “feeling” of being @ home, the parties, events, opportunities to mingle…the craze. The madness. The life.
    But to move back permanently…I dont know o.. I come from a fairly comfortable family and I know that by God’s grace, I wont ever go hungry if I were to relocate but right now, I no fit. For me, the negatives far outweigh the positives.
    TBH, I wish I could have it both ways. I wish Naija was next to the UK and commutable under an hour. I wish I could spend long months in Naija and long months in the UK when I get fed up. Until then, I’ll remain in the UK and continue to visit naija once a year.

    • Tin can

      May 10, 2013 at 1:42 pm

      We have a lot in common, I think. Are you in the Ph industry?

  44. Ayobella

    May 10, 2013 at 1:07 am

    @ Unreturnee ,You just nailed it !Thanks o .Without connections in Nigeria ,nothing for you .What is better than a system that rewards hardwork?I beg, relocate them .I have friends here who did just that .

  45. NNENNE

    May 10, 2013 at 1:25 am

    I have no immigration restrictions.If I get a job that will pay me half of what I make here, I will definitely move back. I can always come to the USA from time to time.

  46. NNENNE

    May 10, 2013 at 1:34 am

    Life at home is lea stressful no matter your position in society!

    • lola

      May 10, 2013 at 2:45 pm

      Hian! Tell that to the danfo bus driver or conductor that has to face traffic/LASTMA official every morning or the hawkers in traffic that always have to avoid being whipped by KAI. Please tell me these people won’t leave Nigeria if they have the opportunity.

  47. FJD

    May 10, 2013 at 2:22 am

    I just had to managed to type this piece am feeling sleepy may be when I am up then I will narrate my own experience , I studied abroad and if we want to compare the UK especially London and Nija , then we are making a mistake. Even as a professional , I made money .But, I left England due to the people around me even though I got brothers who have legal papers but all of them are bunch of jealous human beigns cos I was doing well and they just want to run me down. Now, if you want to live abroad it’s nice and ok so far you are a professional , you’ve got skill set, you can perform at work place when they give you a job and if you can bear the bully attitude of racism . Please stay away from haters as much as you can. Spend wisely.Welcome to England. So I decided to leave the UK the day I got my certificate from school because, even my own so called brother where not looking for my progress. It wasn’t easy . By , the time I came to Nija for my NYSC God knows I almost passed out at ISEYIN CAMP OYO STATE . Even when I was been transported to my PPA I was almost gone…God !!! I just remembered the cool breeze , chicken and chips( KFC), burger king, transport system, electricity , good roads. And I said to myself no matter what I am going through abroad , I will continue to give thanks to GOD! because, Nija no be am oh! Just make your money and live in Ghana or West Africa if you don’t have Residence Visa to any western world..So , at the end of the day I hustled well here ,created jobs and now I still see the reason why I should live abroad. NEPA brings bogus bills(thieves) how would you bring a 29k bills to a house where they only have 1 tv and 1 globe? , na pure water them dey manufacture there? My brothers and sisters, if you want to enjoy abroad like UK , Invest there , do business and make money don’t wait for taking up a job. Help others and cut your coat according to your size , abeg NIJA no be part of am abeg. I use generator Day and Night, the harmony of the generator it’self is killing…Just tired of NIJA ABEG …But, making money here is sweet sha……. You can buy travel card Zone 1-6 for a week and you are good to travel anywhere in london for a week at anytime T without paying extra fees.. Nija you ear SANGO SANGO IFO! -300 in the morning and in the even from Oshodi 700 ..just giving examples..you could buy a TC for the whole trip you are making for the whole week.Sorry guyz if there’s any typo forget about it as I am sleeping and typing so tired Ineed rest

  48. Artful Dodger

    May 10, 2013 at 7:12 am

    @ unreturnee, you have said it all. Absoulte freaking thorough addressing of the issues. My reasons are in line with yours, except in my case, 1) I am in Australia, 2) My Parents paved the way for that.
    My dad was a Medical Doctor in Naija and got nothing to show for it after almost 20 years. The guy is balling so hard right now, and all his kids are fully set up now too.

    Naija is Good, but its not for everybody… just like “overs” is good too, its not for everybody either. to each his/her own.

  49. Unreturnee

    May 10, 2013 at 7:35 am

    Thanks guys, sorry for the long write up. I just had to type when I read the previous comments, because I guessed they came from readers from rich or well connected homes. I wanted people to read the other side of the story and know how people from the other side of the tracks experience a sense of hopelessness. because the government has failed us and has doomed us to not live out your aspirations even if you are hardworking. @Artful dodger my dad is an engineer he is 60+ now and British trained for that matter. Nothing to show for it except his kids education. I am happy he listened to my pleas and they did something to make me take up that admission. The things well to do kids take for granted. I don’t have any bitterness to them o, in fact I am grateful for my upbringing because it made me who I am today. I look back from where I am coming from and where I am now and can be nothing but thankful. To those who have gone back, I wish you all the best and I hope you find what you are looking for

  50. Person pikin

    May 10, 2013 at 7:56 am

    Many of you that are pro living in the UK probably got there when immigration was less tight (say before 2010) or were born there before Madam Thatcher reformed citizenship or are here by ancestory/marriage ties or were just favoured by God to get companies or have businesses that can sponsor their application to stay there.
    If you dont fall into this category nko? How you go do? Living abroad is great but if you can’t be there legally, its more honourable to go home. Trust me, only a handful of naija immigrants make it here, only a handful! I have a classic example of my family friend who finished with a distinction after his masters, dude worked in Sainsburys for more than a year before God blessed him with an opportunity to travel to Australia for his PhD. My own bro nko, same scenero. Goes on interviews almost every week, gets even to the final stages where there are like 2/3 candidates left but is denied the job cos he only has PSW which will be running out soon. Let me not even start with my experiences with this oyinbo people in the office where I work.
    When I left secondary school in 2003, many of the top shot children in my school left for the UK. Fast foward to 2013 90% of them are back home. If you are blessed to have parents who can fix you up somewhere in Naija why the heck would you want to kill yourself living here? Applying for jobs that you are almost certain of not getting, except by divine favour? Taking bull shit from these oyinbo people cos their skin manages not to have melanin.

    Abeg everything in life is relative biko. If God has blessed you with an opportunity to leave poverty in Naija and have a good job here, then great! Stay! if otherwise, good too. Life has a way of balancing things out in the end. No two people have the same route in this life journey!

    • Person pikin

      May 10, 2013 at 8:00 am

      PS; My comment was based on my little knowledge of living in the UK for 4 years. I dont know how it works in other developed countries.

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 8:31 am

      So, what if you don’t have parents who can fix you up? What we should be fighting for in 9ja is a sense of equality. No where in the world is there equality 100%, but at least in western nations whatever your social stand you have access to something to better yourself. Whatever you make of it is your business. It irks me bad when I read the let your parents fix you up. What about the millions of graduates whose parents can’t fix them up, they don’t deserve jobs abi. Why is 9ja such a place that only those who are born into money deserve a good life, the rest can go live under a bridge. Any system that provides a form of equality and gives you a chance is way better than a system that your parents can fix you up. The poor and middle class make up the majority yet they are the most neglected. You will find that the most successful immigrants here and the children of nobody’s. The children who know that there is nothing for them to go back to, no plan B, so they wait it out and struggle it out and make something of themselves. Achieve things that in their wildest dreams they will never attain to. That was my motivation sha, I don’t know about anyone else. It is the kids of the connected people who can’t cut it that quickly run back to 9ja where their background covers up their inadequacies. Abi how do you explain that all you could get here was part time council job and the week you landed in 9ja you got a job in the Central Bank in abj earning millions. A job she probably isn’t qualified to do, and will never get such a job here on her own steam. She even boasts to me that pele o madam worker. She doesn’t do shishi at work yet she gets her cool cash at the end of the month plus other allowances, me I should sit down and be serving oyinbo. When a foreign trained graduate cannot even contribute productively to her own country paying her salary, there is no hope again. I will serve oyinbo o, who my Papa be. Wo, i dey go work, I can’t type again. As you said personal experiences will always differ. I am not in any way special, it is just God and I am blessed. I wish you all the best.

    • Lola

      May 10, 2013 at 11:27 am

      How can I contact you?

    • Funke

      May 10, 2013 at 12:57 pm

      @unreturnee, how can I contact you please? I’ll just love to speak with you. Can you set up a make shift email address for us?

  51. Hilda

    May 10, 2013 at 8:44 am

    “Person pikin:I totally agree with you. @Unreturnee was simply fortunate and he or she`s hardwork paid off. UK immigration rules are tight and some have no other choice but to return home than remain there illegally.

    The UK is NOT paradise, not even close! So unreturnee shuould stop whining about Nigeria. If you want to ban yourself from Nigeria..who cares? Just don`t be judgemental. People struggle all over the world afterall. Every country have classes, you simply fought your way through. Some people return to NIgeria and get a job straight away while some do not, connection or no connection.

    • Bleed blue

      May 10, 2013 at 10:00 am

      Hilda are you serious? You consider Unreturnee’s opinions judgemental? How so abeg?
      And you say all she’s achieved is based on her being “simply fortunate”? And then you contradict yourself by saying her “hardwork paid off” and she “simply fought her way through”? Which one are you attributing her success story to? Sheer luck or hard work? As in….please what are you really on about?

      You’ve said the UK is not paradise. Did she not state very clearly that the UK has its own flaws as well?

      She’s most certainly not whining about Nigeria as you say she is. What she’s done is given a thorough comparative analysis of her life in the UK versus her potential life in Nigeria. She’s done this by making very solid statements and assertions and by giving real life examples, and all you’ve done is berate her for it without giving a similarly solid base for your own argument.

      Please calm down and read through her comments again oh!

    • Bolu

      May 10, 2013 at 11:07 am

      Only a Nigerian will use the words simply fortunate and hardwork in the same sentence. Okay @Unreturnee was fortunate. Her bro in BoA too was fortunate, the sister in Canada who got tuition reduced too was fortunate. Her family must have the fortunate gene. @Unreturnee’s boss from Brixton too was fortunate, and her colleagues were fortunate. Shut your mouth please. That is an unacheiver’s mantra. I dont mean to be insulting but to attribute someone’s success just to “was simply fortunate and he or she`s hardwork paid off. ” is irritating like hell. If anyone says that to me ehn, I will go nuclear on their ass. I love her story because all you hear is doom and gloom from pple abroad, as if those that have made it have two heads. Her story also highlights the HUGE DISCREPANCIES in the Naija society and it puts our GOVERNMENT TO SHAME for failing us, and we had to leave the country to get something our own homeland should have given us.
      I find her story very inspiring and it is similar to mine too so I can relate. I am guessing your story is you too did MSc na and you haven’t made it yet. I tell people, don’t just pick any degree or Msc because you can afford the fees. These Uni’s come in their hundreds to 9ja, market to us give us easy admission (esp UK Uni’s) and we are on the plane in droves every year. School finishes your eyes will now clear, that you have a “useless” degree that gives you NO edge because you joined the mass gravy train. You think employers haven’t seen thousands with your degree? What makes you special, what sets you apart? MBA sef is no longer special. Do a specialist masters instead. There were only 10 of us at my Uni, and we all were HEAD HUNTED by employers BEFORE we finished. My friends who had masters degrees of 100 in a set are not doing jobs related to their degree. They had to just get a job sha. So, there is hardwork and there is hardwork with sense and drive. There is no country that things are not hard, and @Unreturnee’s story doesn’t look like she had it easy either. Arm yourself with the tools to succeed. The person at TESCO works just as hard as the person in Canary Wharf or even harder, there are loads of graduates and even MSc holders in lowly paid jobs, but compare the skills, qualifications, and personalties and you will know that khaki no be leather. Also, you have to have the drive and the will to succeed. Going to University is never enough. There are also hundreds of thousands of British jobless graduates. So if an immigrant can be this successful, it shows you that if a system has tools in place for you to succeed, whatever you make of it now depends on you the person. I am also a child from Iyana Ipaja who has a corner office with a great view. I stopped pinching myself years ago, and just bask in the goodness of life. No one will hand you anything or owes you anything unless you are related to David Cameron. If you are now illegal, why in the world do you expect to do well. Why. The system is there to ensure that you don’t make a headway you think it is like Naija where illegal operations are King. Yes Immigration is tighter now because they have to take care of their own people. If our govt put us first expatriates will not go to Naija and live large while the Nigerian Indigene is not promoted to that job, but they bring Oyinbo from London to head a Unit.
      @Neo your case is a very very very small minority, and what year did you graduate please in comparison with the millions who graduated the year that you did. In trying to say your case was different, you have shown no sympathy to the rest who the system has condemned because their fathers are not big men. For every Naija graduate that got jobs on merit, thousands got their jobs through connection. That is a fact if you want to be objective. Go to Europe, Canada and America and it is the reverse. Those that get jobs based on connections are A MINORITY. So, what is your point again? Nigeria needs to be a country where MERIT IS THE ORDER OF THE DAY, and the high lifestyle is not given to only the select few. Abi are you enjoying the same electricity as Aso Rock? All countries have classes no doubt but Nigeria’s case is just totally shameful.

    • Hilda

      May 10, 2013 at 1:33 pm

      You are obviously the one who needs to chill..
      Like i stated earlier, diffrent strokes for diffrent folks. People live on and under the poverty line in the UK. She could have “made it” in Nigeria too with the same hardwork and determination. Whether we live in Nigeria, UK or wherever, we all have the same enemy, death. Take a chill pill Bolu. You do not even know me.

    • Hilda

      May 10, 2013 at 4:43 pm

      Geez..you are like a dog with a bone. Let it go

    • Bukie

      May 10, 2013 at 11:20 am

      Really no need to take jabs or start insulting. Let’s try and keep this discussion civilised.

      No one said the UK was paradise. This is an interesting conversation with view points from both sides. If you have nothing constructive to add, it’s not a must for you to comment.

    • Hilda

      May 10, 2013 at 12:01 pm

      What do you mean by that? Did you miss the part where @Unreturnee stated that the UK is closest to paradise. I am not insulting anyone, i am simply stating that diffrent strokes for diffrent folks. Just because someone doesnt like Nigeria or want to live in Nigeria doesnt mean one should make Nigeria sound like its so terribly bad. I lived in the UK for 6 years. Plus read up on the conditions of countries like North Korea, Iraq or Somali then you will know we have alot going for us in Nigeria whether you live here or not.

    • Bleed blue

      May 10, 2013 at 2:20 pm

      Hilda oh Hilda,
      Unreturnee said, and I quote:

      “Some may think oh I’ve painted the UK as paradise, it has its own share of problems, but it is the closest to paradise that I have experience when I compare it to the hell I suffered though in 9ja”

      READ WELL OOOOOOH!!!!

    • returnee

      May 10, 2013 at 12:39 pm

      She makes me laugh. @unreturnee, you are definitely an exception to the rule. Come back to this post in twenty years. There is a reason why our parents move back after a while. Yes some of your points are very true but some are highly glossed over. I also use to be a child of a “nobody” but relocating abroad has given my family a new life. I have lived in the UK and USA as well as naija but UK is not as paradiso as you’ve painted it. No i am not suffering here. My household income is high enough for us to open an offshore account due to the excessive taxes. I don’t have the time to type my experiences. Compared to Nigeria, UK is not bad but it still has a long way to go in comparison to the USA . The peace of mind Nigeria brings once you’ve found your niche cannot be compared to the money you make abroad slaving away to people who will always consider you a lesser being. Nigeria is tough but once you make it, it is rewarding. The inner satisfaction that comes with the knowledge of you contributing to your own country is humbling. Many English people will give an arm if presented with an opportunity to leave their country. Like I said earlier, you are an exception to the rule and I am happy for you and your family.

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 7:41 pm

      Which

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 8:02 pm

      Am I an exception to the rule, not necessarily because thousands are like me everywhere. Like @Bolu said I am in a country where the majority achieve on Merit and the minority achieve on connections. In 9ja it is the other way round. Which part did I gloss over? At least if you want to accuse me of something present the facts like I did. As people here have mentioned, I made a thorough comparative analysis. Wherever you disagree pick a hole in it.
      Why do people talk about work that earns you a salary slavery? I will never get that attitude. I render services and I get paid for it and handsomely too. I am out in the morning and back in the evening, and I will not have to worry about insane traffic or turning on the generator. If I ran my own business I will have the same hours or even more. My job contributes to billions of dollars of profit for my company and I am proud that I am making a difference globally. If you consider pride and dignity in labour slavery, may I refer you to a dictionary?
      Do you also consider paying taxes slavery? Then sorry to say that is selfishness on your part. You want to be a Nigerian, make your cool cash and take everything home, and not contribute to society and services that offer people a lifeline. If not for the 9ja system that has turned everyone to local government chairmen in their own homes, things won’t be so bad. I gladly and joyfully pay my taxes because I can see what it does. It provides amenities for people who don’t earn what I do. It makes everyone enjoy from the same pot and basic necessities of life and not locked down to a few. We are the most religious nation on earth but love thy neighbour as yourself is never hammered in church, but how you will make more money and money and money.
      Money that will not affect the next man on the road but your family. You are already hiding some of your money in offshore accounts anyway, so why I am even bothering preaching to you? 20years time, I will still say the same thing, because in 20 years time I will be more established, so will my siblings and my parents would have gotten 20years to live the life they deserve.
      Slaving away to people who consider me a lesser being, that is too funny. Black people and always pulling out the race card in every argument. You and your family live there don’t you, so why are you still in a country that considers you a lesser being? Your off shore accounts are not in Nigeria I am guessing, so you are hiding your money in countries of “superior beings”. Hypocrisy – look that up in a dictionary please.
      Of course Nigeria will give you peace of mind, you have the money, you are far removed from the poverty around you and you don’t care. With the rate of kidnapping these days, even that peace of mind has been threatened. Big men and their kids live in fear. So far the only people who have disagreed (and that is okay, it created an intelligent debate) with my comments have not mentioned the need for more equality. They carefully shy away from that topic, and that is what we should be angered about the most, but we don’t care about other people, we don’t see their suffering. All i have deciphered is 9ja is not so bad you can make it, what about the millions who may not be able to because there is no system in place for them to.
      This country has taught me compassion, I finally understand what love thy neighbour as thy self means, i have been able to not only donate to charity, but devote weekends and free times to helping out in charities. So, if living here has not brought you to that understanding, and you are still me myself and I, take everything I can get for myself, thenI am truly sorry for you but I will not apologise for my love and loyalty to this country. Daz all

    • Bolu

      May 10, 2013 at 12:53 pm

      I had to go read again . “The closest to paradise I have ever experience, when i compare it to the hell i suffered through in 9ja” Obviously comprehension is your problem

    • Bolu

      May 10, 2013 at 1:01 pm

      See her mouth like Nigeria is not terribly bad. Open your eyes Hilda and stop burying your head in the sand. You are seeing Nigeria from the comfort of your home and the lifestyle that you live and your friends and family live. Go to the hinterlands in other countries and see the amenities that they have. You don’t even have to go far in Lagos and compare. If you are not a big man or even average, the society has abandoned you, and you are talking about Nigeria not being terribly bad. Don’t let me go nuclear on you. Nigeria will not be terribly bad when a little boy in Birnin Kebbi has the same access to school, water, electricity, health as the same little boy in Lekki. Basic amenities available to everyone is the yardstick. Everything else is feferity like my mum says. Anyone that can’t see and understand that from @Unreturnee’s comment has no human bone of compassion and a sense of judgment. I had to go read again . “The closest to paradise I have ever experience, when i compare it to the hell i suffered through in 9ja” Obviously comprehension is your problem, so I should just stop typing.

    • Hilda

      May 10, 2013 at 3:43 pm

      So who is being insultive now?

    • Hilda

      May 10, 2013 at 3:52 pm

      Please keep it moving and stop being so petulant.

  52. Derin

    May 10, 2013 at 9:37 am

    It’s like the Niel Diamond song – I am I said

    Well, I’m Lagos State (New York City) born and raised
    But nowadays, I’m lost between two shores
    Melbourne’s (LA’s) fine, but it ain’t home
    Lagos’ (New York’s) home but it ain’t mine no more ~Niel Diamond
    I love Nigeria, I call it home, but I can’t live there because I’m not money driven 🙁 In as much as I want to be part of a much needed change, I have sadly accepted that you need to wealthy to be able to live comfortably. Unfortunately, my priorities in life are quite different.

  53. Moi

    May 10, 2013 at 10:39 am

    Most intelligent conversation on Bella Naija ever….BN readers are so intelligent.

  54. Busola

    May 10, 2013 at 10:54 am

    The only way I would move back home is if I get married to someone who is insistent on relocating… Then I wouldn’t have a choice. To be honest, the UK is not bad if you have your papers. You will only struggle here if you don’t have the right to stay and a sound education. One thing I also believe in is that blessing has a place, for some it’s Nigeria, others outside Nigeria.. The key here is discernment! Don’t move if you haven’t asked God about it.

  55. Person pikin

    May 10, 2013 at 11:05 am

    One quick question Unreturnee: Have all the nobody’s children who made it over to the UK from Naija the same time you did been blessed with good jobs like you? Lets be realistic. I have friends from poor homes who probably got to the UK through PTDF scholarship and made distinctions in their MSc but still work as cleaners, combine one or two jobs per hour jobs, live in house shares, bus it to work and back, only shop during sales etc. Would you say they have no motivation or determination to attain greater heights, or the poor situation of their families isn’t pushing them enough to struggle hard? or they have plan B at home? Now their visas are almost running out what should they do? Go into hiding and start playing hide and seek with the UKBA? If they had rich dads i can bet an arm they would have left immediately after masters. They probably decided to stay back just as you did because there isn’t anything or anyone to fall back to in Naija but have not been blessed, just the way you are.
    Meanwhile not all rich kids are like your friend who was a council worker here that landed a job in the CBN. It’s funny how you describe the council job she had as all she could get. How many immigrants get your kind of job or even an average good job in the UK? And she is no yard stick for every other kid from rich home. Besides rich kids landing good jobs from their parents help isn’t just a Naija thing. Its happens everywhere else, maybe more pronounced ‘cos of the situation of things in Naija. Everybody wants the best for their own, it’s just obvious when you have the money and connection to back it up. Not bragging, but I come from a very comfortable home myself and here’s what my Dad says “even if I have to lobby for a job for any of you, I don’t want to lobby for certificate with a 2:2 on it” Meaning you have to work hard. Funny enough he has not had to lobby for anything for any of us. It’s his nephews and nieces that are enjoying the ”privileges” of having a rich uncle in terms of job assistance. My kid bro’s first job immediately after NYSC was a N250K/month job (relatively okay by naija standard) and daddy had absolutely nothing to do with it. He’s planning to go for his MSc and he’s planning not to have daddy too involved with his fees. He still lives at home and has a car so he spends very little and has every opportunity to save
    We all love the life here, no doubt. But life here doesn’t favour every one. I know a couple of other friends who come from financially buoyant homes that have made it on their own in this UK as well. They came to the UK to school, had good grades and got good jobs. May be not as lucrative as yours but are still very comfortable. My cousin is a good example, he has swum in money since he’s dad’s sperm fertilised their mum’s egg. This boy literally grew up in a fairy tale world. He came for his undergrad, proceeded to his masters and next thing he’s got a job in one of the oil coy in Aberdeen. He’s sis is doing just as well in the states. Their dad’s ‘’big man’’ doesn’t extend beyond naija, so they worked just as hard.
    I understand your sentiments towards this country that gave you the opportunity that was denied you in naija because your daddy was a nobody (in your words). If you had come from a rich home or your dad was high up somewhere in Naija I can be almost certain your views on this issue would be different.
    My dear, count yourself blessed! I’m sure you know that already. I pray God blesses us just as he has blessed you.

    Omo my tea time is up, o dabo

    • Hilda

      May 10, 2013 at 12:40 pm

      Spot on!

    • Bolu

      May 10, 2013 at 1:14 pm

      If you open your eyes and stop drinking the cool aid that n’er do well immigrants tell you, you will see the multitude, yes I wrote it multitude of immgrants that are doing well. especially from countries (not only Naija) with rampant inequalities. Not high ballers o, but doing well for themselves. Able to stand on their own two feet without anyone’s help. Dem pleeeeeeeenty. You just need to expand the circle you move in. You wont believe the BS my Uncle was telling us while we were students. Go to Sainsbury’s you will see your mates there working, your shakara is too much. I wanted to wave my offer letter under his nose the day it arrived. Uncle: You have MSc and so, get any job you see, and therein lies the trap. The day you believe it, you are done for. They want you to toe the line that they did, they tell you tales of woe woe woe, before you know it, you enter a vicious cycle you cannot leave, and your mates with the same MSc are rolling high. So, like I said before, MSc means jack or PhD if you don’t specialise or use it properly. Do you know how many hundreds of thousands do MSc every year. Forget that mentality. An Msc is not the visa to automatic success. Do you know how many. We all have our own paths to follow o, but nothing please me more to raise my babies in this environment. Nothing

    • slice

      May 10, 2013 at 3:54 pm

      if you travel abroad and want to do well, careful what you study o. that’s my only advice here. i’m not saying don’t study english or political science o, i’m just saying what are the chances that you’ll get hired for that whether you’re from there or not. A lot of the people who do well there went for sciences or IT that’s where the current needs are and in a few other areas. As your friends who don’t have jobs whether they have papers and what they studied.

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 8:12 pm

      You and @Bolu put it very well. You have to be very careful with what you study, so you are not part of the crowd. If you want to forge ahead, set yourself apart. My tenant was hand picked at a career fair at his university. He works for PWC in London. He went straight rom Student visa to sponsorship visa. Yes he needs to work for 5 years before he becomes a permanent resident but unlike some people think, it is not 5years of slavery but 5years of gathering experience and developing himself. He can decide to be a contractor after r leave PWC if that if he wants but his 5years have not wasted. Also be careful of the university that you pick. Be very very careful. The tuition fees are roughly in the same bracket, so aim high for the top ones. It gives your CV some pedigree, you get great connections, lots of chances to network. All the big big companies came to my uni for career fairs twice and they are very selective of the Uni’s that they go to. I have friends who work in HR in Investment Banks and this criteria believe it or not is “informally” considered during the selection process. So, spend your tuition money very wisely. Pick a good as in kick ass Masters degree that is marketable, emphasis on marketable and also pick a renowned University. Thousands of MSc grads all over the place, from all sorts of Uni’s but check the stats of getting jobs within the first year of graduation and see which Uni’s have high stats. Mine definitely has a very high rate and I am witness to it, so are many many people I went to school with who we say hi to each other at nearby cafe’s during lunch break. Oya come and see during our annual Alumni event, people pulling our business cards that will make your eyes water. You just have to strategise. May the Lord bless all of our hustle and make our stories different.

  56. Bolu

    May 10, 2013 at 11:34 am

    “! I have a classic example of my family friend who finished with a distinction after his masters, dude worked in Sainsburys for more than a year before God blessed him with an opportunity to travel to Australia for his PhD.” – I’m sure he got that opportunity on merit. Would he have gotten such is he didnt have connections in Naija.
    “When I left secondary school in 2003, many of the top shot children in my school left for the UK. Fast foward to 2013 90% of them are back home. If you are blessed to have parents who can fix you up somewhere in Naija why the heck would you want to kill yourself living here? Applying for jobs that you are almost certain of not getting,” – That is the crux of the matter. “top shots children” applying for jobs you are not sure of getting, but in naija even if you are not qualified, you will get the job, not minding that other people who also applied were probably more qualified. how is that fair. A system you are sure of getting something that you want because your parents have connections. Of course 90% of them will be back, why won’t they be back when they can’t stand living in a system where they are the same as everyone on the street. They can’t chant “Do you know who i am” to Police officer. They will stand and queue like everyone. They have to come back to base and flex muscle
    “Taking bull shit from these oyinbo people cos their skin manages not to have melanin.” – you take bullshit everywhere in the world. Naija and their nonsense pride and arrogance. You think the poor people in Naija don’t take bullshit from the rich and ruling class? Have you seen how they treat their maids, drivers, and the people who work for them? Ask Glo workers how Adenuga treats them. What were you saying again about people taking bullshit?

  57. isaid!!

    May 10, 2013 at 11:50 am

    @moi, totally agree with you i.e definitely the most intelligent conversation on Bella Naija ever. To all the contributors, well said. To each his own.But i must add, life here in naija “i no dey easy, at all”!!!!!!!

  58. Nkem

    May 10, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    I would please like to ask all those that stayed back in the UK what year they came over? PSW has been scrapped so when you are done schooling they expect you to leave. How do you even stay back when you visa restrictions.
    Abi what other visas can one apply for if they intend to stay?

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 8:23 pm

      Hi Nkem, If you can secure a job before you are done with University, you will not have any visa worries because your company will file for a work permit for you. Never let anyone make you believe that this is not possible. It is not very common but it is very doable. I live with one of such people at the moment. If you are good and you sell your skills well you will get a job. He got his job whilst he was writing his project and the visa process started. He submitted his project and he was in employment within that same month. There are many stories such as that. For my IB Assessment Centre (final stage interview) there was a 9ja applicant there who just arrived the UK 2 months before. Can you beat that? He had submitted his online application, done his online test, phone interview in that time. Here I was interviewing in November ending and I was done with submitting project and this guy just started his Masters two months before. SHARP guy. He said people had told him start applying as soon as you start school. Don’t wait for school to be almost over. At least then, immigration wasn’t this bad. So I am passing that advice to you too. All the best.

    • slice

      May 12, 2013 at 8:30 pm

      This is not a generalization but if you’re in a situation where you need a company to file your visa, be extra extra careful with your selection. Choose a company that has a high rate of retention of employees because it’s best if you don’t need to look for a new job before you get your visa. Even if the best “retention” company doesn’t pay as much as another high flying company, but the people are nice and more likely to let you do your job in peace, i suggest choose the one that pays less. “do your time,” learn and once the filing is done, you may choose a “riskier” company.

  59. whocares

    May 10, 2013 at 4:07 pm

    i dont know what a psw is, but I think you can upgrade your visa to a tier 2 or something.. I dont know how well this works if you are a masters student, but my friend who did his undergrad was able to upgrade his visa, and he stayed behind to work.. so you will need to upgrade your visa, but that will only happen if there is a huge potential of you getting a job, so apply for interviews etc etc and i also think you would have to go back to nigeria to do it.. im not sure of all this, but here – ukimmigrationbarristers.com/?immigration_visa=yes&gclid=CPaM1_vni7cCFSXLtAod_2AANQ.. hope that helps.

  60. whocares

    May 10, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    ooh i also forgot to add, if you are still a student, universities are REALLY helpful about all these things.. as most unis have fairs and other such events for international students. so basically pay the careers advisor people are your uni a visit.

    • Unreturnee

      May 10, 2013 at 8:31 pm

      Yes, yes, yes. I attended many of such fairs. At my Uni enough companies came and I also travelled to other Uni’s to attend their fairs especially the top top ones. If you don’t extend yourself you will never know. At these fairs I saw many many many Indian students and only a handful of 9ja students. Considering our sheer numbers I was wondering where all of them went to. With the complaints I have read up here so far, now I know why. My career advising unit were beyond awesome. They had a whole office to themselves and their job was to prepare you for the job market. They helped me look for jobs, they tailored my CV from the 4 – 5 pages 9ja people use. They told me no no 2 pages max. They told me what font to use, how to highlight my skills, how to tailor your CV to the role, never have a blanket cv, they coached me on interviewing skills, I had mock interviews. I went there so many times, I was wondering where my 9ja people were. A lot of them just listen to what other fellow 9ja people who have been here before tell them. That I noticed. You should have seen the big hamper I put together for the career advising office and hand delivered it when I got my job. Yes it was up to me, but they prepared me for packaging myself.

    • intheoverseas

      May 11, 2013 at 1:12 am

      Mehn… you are a star. Not just because of how far you have come but your ideals and opinions about life and inequality in Nigeria, respectively, are remarkable. They totally resonate with mine. I’m “hustling” my way in another “far away” country for a quasi similar purpose and this talk is inspiring. I hope we meet on a different platform sometime in the future. God bless.

    • whatever

      May 11, 2013 at 1:45 am

      @unreurnee: I think we need to open a career advising center. Most Nigerians dont change their mindset when they come here. Some of the ones I know are busy chasing 4.0/4.0 gpa, when employers here dont care jack about such! After I proved myself in my first semester. Omo gear changed, although I made sure I never dropped below 3.7/4.o, I refocused my strategy cos I knew there was no way I was going back to Nigeria at least not without experience. I went from one career fair to another. Career center was my second home, until I got my resume to a very good standard ( 1 page, my school encourages only one page except you have more than 5 years work experience), I had tons of mock interview, I signed up for a mailing list, so I was always notified when companies commit to carrying out mock interview. I attended so many networking events especially the dinners that take place a night before a career fair. This makes it easy for you to sell yourself in the morning when you meet them at the career fair. I learned to speak like them ! (yes, there was no igbo man in the room when the English language was formed. Backward Nigerians will say you are forming, pls will some1 hire you to represent their company if they cant understand you when you speak? except you are in a purely technical role then your accent may not matter but if you are trying to be a consultant or any position that requires you to interface with your company’s customers, pls your writing and speaking is highly important. I had 2nd stage interview that required writing an essay, right there in their office, in front of them). My Nigerian friends will be carrying Nigeria’s backward CV style around, these employers trash them immediately; they dont make friends outside their Nigerian clique (OYO !). Getting good grades is important but these people care more about what you know and your communication skills. An American friend of mine with a gpa of 2.9/4.0 (he almost didnt graduate cos you need at least a 3.0 to graduate) was one of the first to get a job offer in my class and when I spoke with him, I understood why an employer will want to hire him. I have talked and talked to the people I know here but they dont listen, most of them are children of somebodys and they were sure their parents will arrange something if they return home. Now, a couple of them have returned to Nigeria and I am sure they will come to this blog now and be writing rubbish about how people are suffering in the US. My advise to everyone, things are not always rosy but work as hard as you pray and pray as hard you work. God will surely bless your hustle #PardonMyTypos, in a hurry

  61. NNENNE

    May 11, 2013 at 2:30 am

    The only advice I have for those glamorizing for life abroad is not to loose your linage…regardless of where you come from. Visit often and connect. Apparently, most of these bloggers are first generation Nigerians at wherever they are residing.
    Usually, by the time it gets to the third, fourth generation ,that is your grand, great grand , great,great, grand children, history will not be very kind. Those ones will not work as hard as you the first generation worked because they have lost touch and will take things for granted.Unfortunately, because they are black, they will not “pass” in society and we all know what they will become.
    Coming back to Nigeria, then will be like the Israelite going back to Jerusalem. And the family name?
    Please people think ahead and above the flashy streets.

    • Acne Be Damned

      May 11, 2013 at 8:53 am

      What kind of doom and gloom picture are you painting for the future generation of blacks choosing to live outside the country!

      I was loving your comment when you mentioned not forgetting your lineage and staying connected but the rest of it is just wrong. How can you predict the future like this biko? On what basis?

      All this “black” this”black” that, when are we going to stop focusing on this race thing? Look at sports, basketball, football, tennis, boxing, we have some of the most talked about sports people. Look at music, black people receive many grammy awards, the business world is filled with so many black achievers, heck a black man is in the white house! We no longer have any reason to clutch that “because I’m black” story.

      Not that I’m saying racism doesn’t exist, oh no, I’m not that naïve, I just wish we’d quit that focus and as such remove that way of thinking from the next generations as much as possible.
      What about the stark tribalism in Nigeria? Or even in the UK, you need to see how the Scottish man scorns his English neighbour, but does that stop anyone from progressing?
      What about sexism? The world is moving on from “because I’m a woman” and this is the same way we need to move from thinking being black is reason to predict a gloomy future.

      I’ll tell you what, as soon as I started seeing myself as the well bred, educated, intelligentfemale that I am, and let go of any race inhibitions, I started to speak as I think and very quickly I started to gain the recognition I deserve. I’m now the head of my department in the bank I work for in the UK, who are my subordinates? All white people! They speak to me with utmost respect becuase when I talk, they don’t hear anything else but what deserves respect.

      So please Nne, your advice to stay connected to the motherland is pure, but the gloomy prediction for the future is unnecessary.

  62. mae

    May 12, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    @unreturnee & @whatever, is there anyway I could contact u guys ( maybe in private)? I need advice ( or some sorta pointers)…& based on what u guys have said I’m pretty sure u could help me. Please let me know… If u’d rather not or it’s not convenient that’s fine. Thanx 🙂

    • slice

      May 13, 2013 at 1:33 pm

      Why not ask them here but don’t include your personal info. U know, it cld be a little risky for them so send u their contact info

  63. LILLY

    May 13, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    Personally i have no intentions whatsoever of relocating outside Nigeria. I only travel for holidays and that’s it. i truly and honestly love this country and regardless of our growing challenges, i will stay put.

  64. Duchess

    May 14, 2013 at 6:00 am

    I came to the US on a substantial scholarship, graduated top of my class and started working, and let me just tell you that IT WAS NOT EASY!!! To those who said unreturnee and others were fortunate – “luck” only gets you so far o. I was one of those girls who was absolutely bent on relocating to Nigeria – my plan was to work for a few years after grad and return home. NO ONE COULD CONVINCE ME OTHERWISE. In my case, I graduated at the onset of the recession when people were being laid off left, right, and center and I almost worked myself to the bone in a consulting company trying to keep my job. Hmm, thank God for how far I have come. When I first relocated, my mantra was always “get a great education + good grades in addition to some years of work experience pre and post MBA and go back to Nigeria.” In fact, I refused to fully commit to the love of my life because our timeline of moving back home was vastly different (thank God that he stuck with me and didn’t let me go). Anywho, fast forward to the current day – I went home not too long ago during a time that was probably the most difficult period for my family and my eye opened! I suddenly realized that my family was not as connected as I always thought. One of my siblings has some connections, but I realized that our naija people don’t want to help others except there is something in it for them – i.e. I get your daughter/sister/brother this job and you get me a contract.. alas, my dear sister did not have contracts to hand out. How long will I have used my sibling’s connections? How far would the connections get me?? On a side note, the dad of one my best friends is very, as in very, connected. He kept telling me to move back to naija. As a test, I reached out to him to ask for job help for one of my loved ones in naija… you should have heard him oohing and ahhing about how his dad no longer had connections! If he couldn’t help get the entry level job, how could he help me – a professional with years of work experience get a mide-level job? No hard feelings on my part, but that opened my eye. Upon my return to the US, I worked and prayed doubly as hard and got promoted to managerial, but my pay was still not where I wanted it to be. Now I’m in a masters program with the hope of getting into consulting in the oil industry. My dream is still to relocate to Nigeria because I really don’t want my kids to go to high school here and domestic life in the US is STRESSFUL (no maid/help and you have to be a mother, career woman, cook, clean, perform all dem wifey duties all by yourself except you are lucky to marry a non-traditional man that can help around the house). Overall, my move back home is highly dependent on finding the right career opportunity, not job o because a job can only get you so far, for myself and my significant other. In the mean time, I really don’t see myself moving back home now because I am passionate about becoming a successful career woman for many many reasons one of which includes the financial ability to take care of my mum and younger sibling. Unfortunately, I simply don’t see how that can happen in Nigeria in the next few years – so my dream is to go back home as an expat! That being said, I sometimes get green eyed re my fellow young “sisters” who are “professional socialites” and married to old/new money in Lag/Abj and live in mansions with their maids, drivers, etc., but I often remind myself that at the end of the day, I will not live through my husband’s and/or his family’s glory. Instead, by God’s infinite grace, we will each create our won glory. May God bless our hustle.

    ps: excuse any typo #sleepy.com

  65. Lizzie

    July 5, 2013 at 11:16 am

    @ unreturnee, Bolu, SLice and every other person who has taken out time to share their experiences, thank you. To those whom Nigeria is home, what are you doing to brighten up your little corner? I love Naija warts and all but after what UNilag did to me, I am channelling my quest for higher education else where… I don’t know what the future holds but I promise to work hard and continually put my best foot forward. So help me God.

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