Dotun Roy

It’s here again, Nigeria’s 54th independence Day celebration. It is so obvious that we have had our fair share of the good, the bad and the ugly as a developing nation. However, one good thing about being a Nigerian is that optimistic view “Naija Go Better” that we all share. It brings glow and radiance on the face of an average Nigerian even when our politicians had let us down. When they have refused to fulfil those promises they made during their “door to door” and “Vote for me” campaign. I would say Nigerians are getting used to political 419ers, but we could only put their activities in check if we open our eyes and vote for the right man in the forthcoming election next year.

Before you begin to have wrong feeling about this blog. It is not intended to condemn any politician. I have vowed never to use my blog to condemn any soul. I would rather use it to propagate a new and better Nigeria that we all desire. I would use this my little online space for the progress of this great nation, not because of anything, but because, I am progressive and I love this country with an unquenchable passion.

Well, ask me if I do not love this country, which country do I run to that I will enjoy so much freedom like this? Nigeria is country where every citizen is free to live anywhere. Nobody challenges anyone when it comes to relocation. I have read stories of other countries where some group of citizens are considered a lower caste or inferior ethnic group, a case that is very common in Asia and india. In some countries, other races or colour will never be given the privilege to live in a particular region based on racial prejudice, countries like South Africa, UK, USA and even Sweden fall into this category. In Nigeria, it is a different story, there is no racial discrimination, no apartheid, no segregation of any sort. Except for the invasion of Boko Haram that has made some part of the country unsafe to live.

It is an indisputable fact that Nigerians are warm and hospitable people. Every visitor is welcome in Nigeria. It is only in Nigeria that a non-Nigerian would sue a Nigerian over his property and still win the case. Our friendliness to foreigners and non-Nigerians is second to none and it has been abused severally, too often, we don’t get reciprocated treatment overseas expect for rare cases. Some days back, Senator Abike Dabiri, Chairman House Committee on Diaspora Affairs recounted horrible situation of Nigerians living abroad. She narrated the ordeal of how Nigerians are being sent to prison on a slightest offence. Numbers of Nigerians thrown into the prisons abroad is alarming she said. Most times, they do this out of hatred for blacks.

Sojourning abroad should not be a crime, but when you abscond from your home country where you are treated like a king to a place where your freedom becomes a threat to people living around you, then it becomes a sin. Just like the parable of the prodigal son in the Bible, he got to a point, after so much suffering, he sat down and remembered his father would not treat him like a slave, and he returned home. It is high time Nigerians living in worst condition abroad returned home and contribute to the national development of our beloved country.

Brain drain is one major demon the country is fighting. The best of the best Nigerian brains and professionals live abroad, working day and night and adding values to those nations that would never give them sense of freedom like they had enjoyed back in their motherland. The usual complain of these professionals is either the terrain is unsafe for their careers and practice or there are no structures and platforms for them to thrive as professionals.

Still fresh in my memory, the story of a Nigerian man living in india, who jumped from sixth floor of an 8 storey building just to escape being arrested by the Indian Police Force. He died while been taken to hospital for treatment. Cases like this abound and it is quite disheartening. Calling on Nigerians home and abroad to use this independence celebration to remember their fatherland and think of how we can both work together so that the dream of transformed and better Nigeria will become a reality!

Let me equally remind us that celebrating Nigeria’s independence should not only be about staging shows and partying. It should be about seeing ourselves enjoying the freedom and independence in the true sense of it by having acess to basic infrastructure and all that make human existence enjoyable and fulfilling.

God Bless Nigeria!

By Dotun Roy is a development driven news website with the overall goal of amplifying, promoting and advocating for positive societal change through Sustainable Development advocacy in line with UN SDGs components such as education, environmental sustainability and Climate Change, Human Rights, health, finance, housing, good governance as well as security in Nigeria and across the world.

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