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Do You Care About Nigeria or Just Money For Your Wedding?



Do You Care About Nigeria or Just Money For Your Wedding?I was stuck in Ajah traffic on Tuesday morning, trying hard to read a Kevin Barry story in all of its florid glory, squeezed between three – well, let’s say big – big people in the back seat of the bus, when this man in the seat before me took something, God only knows what it was, personally. Because, you know, in this Lagos it could be anything.

“The youths in this country are not even ready,” he shouted, “they just want to wake and eat and play and sleep.” He was, of course, spitting everywhere. “You have to be ready to die for this country. You have to be ready to shed blood for this country,” he continued.

As expected, from the front to the middle to the back, the argument started. “Nigeria isn’t worth anyone’s blood.” “A revolution is not the answer, digital warfare is.” Kevin Barry had no chance, I clicked on my power button and cursed silently. But one guy, he shut everyone up. He had the key. He told the man, All dis one wey you just dey shout, if dem give you ₦1 million you go close mouth.

It’s standard to have Nigerians complain about the people in power. It happens everywhere: on Twitter, Facebook, buses, bus stops, newspaper stands. The people in power are mad, they are foolish, they don’t care about us, they are corrupt, greedy, their heads shot off by money.

But we all know these Nigerians, when they get to a position of power, or if someone they know gets to a position of power, we don’t hear pim! from them again.

There are too many examples. One time, a man on my street was appointed the Secretary to the State Government of a south-western state. Before that, if you were around a gathering of my neighbours, you’d hate the government. But after his appointment, after he bought the street a new transformer, graded the road, bought new electric poles – the concrete type – the state government was suddenly the best thing ever. Never mind that all the adjoining streets still had pits for roads, their wooden NEPA poles held in place by large stones.

See this guy in the news now tooLam Adesina‘s son, Adedapo Alm, sorry, Lam Adesina. The guy who thinks it’s perfectly logical to drive around an official car even after he retired from office. The guy who felt “demoralized” and “utterly disappointed” that a sitting governor gifted him ₦1,250,000 for his wedding.

There are so many questions.

But ignore all of that and look at this: This dude wrote a long AF letter addressed to his party leader complaining that he can no longer remain in the party. As long as the letter is, nowhere does this guy discuss policies made by the government that he disagrees with. Nowhere does he state that his offence has anything to do with the governor and the many ways he has failed the people he’s meant to serve. All of his gripe has to do with how the governor has personally offended him by pushing him out of the way at a gathering and not funding his wedding. That’s why he wants to leave the party.

Like that guy in the bus said, small money and everybody just unlooks. Well, small money is relative, sha (because, apparently, ₦1.25 million isn’t enough for some people, even after they have crowdfunded from other people).

The moral of the story is, most of us are just mad because we are not part of the kokoro chopping the efo from the inside. Think about this when you make your party alliances, when you criticize the government, and more importantly, when you go to the polls in February.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime

Niyi Ademoroti is the Features Editor at BellaNaija and an MFA candidate at the Iowa Writers' Workshop. His writing has appeared in AGNI, Hobart and The Republic.


  1. Aare

    October 11, 2018 at 8:28 pm

    I will agree with part of your conclusion, just because there is a chance a significant number see people with access to government funds as a select club that they envy and secretly want to join. An old academic argument and inferring from what one Sashore (which is an old argument) said in a youtube video posted earlier, colonialism created an elite culture with exclusive rights that many Africans envied and wanted to copy. At the end, the so-called independence generation could not do away with the foreign culture but unknowingly embraced it, a guy called our system predendalism. So Nigeria, got stuck in a trap of coups and counter coups of phoney change agents who claimed to fight corruption but only to wear the toga of their foes, and they had enablers, academics, doctors, lawyers, etc. But I disagree with the use of the word most, there are also lots of people who do not believe in your conclusion. I am one of them, I used to think like that until I came to the conclusion that progress and sustainable development can only be achieved if we provide something of value. If we steal from the national cake, we are taking away funds and providing nothing in return or in another situation, if we do shoddy contract, it undermines the core of the project and may just be money thrown into a fire, because at the end of the day, a shoddy road project that should benefit thousands only see one man and his family gain value through excess profit and that makes no sense. Stealing and unfair exchanges of value is the root of how we underdevelop ourselves. Because, obviously, few people have most of the money while they actually contribute shit to the system, what they have contributed is shit not worth developing upon.

  2. Mrs chidukane

    October 11, 2018 at 9:09 pm


  3. Ovadje

    October 11, 2018 at 11:19 pm

    Completely agree with the guy on the bus – and the Adesina guy could not be a more appropriate example!

    Somebody dug up some of his old posts on a couple of Nigerian discussions forums from when he could be classified as a member of the “younger generation” and the guy was a living, breathing Internet “fire-and-brimstone revolutionary”, loquaciously calling for the virtual elimination of all establishment types – until his Dad became Governor! That’s just one reason why I am sadly quite apathetic about all the ongoing noise about a so-called younger generation, not only because the anonymity of the Internet reveals them to be no less tribalistic and corrupt than the older generations but because repeated experiences have shown that many of even the loudest Nigerian “saints” out of the corridors of power suddenly turn when in authority or near it (from Tai Solarin to Itse Sagay, and too many in-between). It’s time we quit fooling ourselves and wasting everyone’s time looking for individual Messiahs, and rather concentrate on the relatively more certain reliability of strong institutions.

    • Saywhatnow

      October 12, 2018 at 12:00 pm da Mannnnnn..Thumbs up..very Well Articulated

  4. lacey

    October 11, 2018 at 11:39 pm

    This is the dumbest piece I have ever read on BN! It’s youths like you that the man on the bus was talking to! it obvious you can sell your soul for a morsel of porridge!Please don’t ever generalise ! If you want to be taken seriously, always think deeply and reasonably, before writing ,so as not to disgrace yourself ! As this blog is read globally ,just to let you know, that you are on an international platform!
    It’s highly obvious that you can be cheaply bought!

    • Rich

      October 12, 2018 at 8:54 am

      This comment is very ironic because you have just done the very thing you are accusing her of.

  5. by_stander

    October 12, 2018 at 10:50 am

    This article is neither here or there. i didn’t get a conclusion of what you expect from us.

    but I am sure you dont expect us to believe that – all young people are phoney because they fight for their inalienable rights. and that when they have some of it (usually in form of compensation) they forget about their inalienable rights and keep quiet even though others still don’t have theirs?

    If you believe that i just want to all youths are not Lawyers or Accountants – you also need a deeper understand of what is happening to see how the game is rigged in favour of these two professions.

    And another thing, you didnt tell us is your educational background.

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