I was walking out of the Gym this evening, hurting from the incredible abdominal workout i had just finished, when i overheard a conversation between two men sitting at the foot of the stairs:
Man 1: Where are you from?
Man 2: I am from Liberia
Man 1: Isnt that where there has been lots of fighting?
Man 2: No thats Nigeria
Man 1: No its not Nigeria, Nigerians are all Con men and thieves
Me: No you cannot say that of Nigerians, I am Nigerian and a Proud one at that.
Man1: No you cannot be Nigerian.
Me : I am Nigerian and why would you say such a thing about Nigerians?
Man 1: oh i live in London, i am into properties and i have dealt with a lot of them
Me: Good for you, but Nigeria has over 160million people, you cannot cast such aspersions on the country as a whole because of your dealings with a few people...
Man 1: Nigerians are all con men and thieves except you
Me: I disagree, Nigerians are wonderful people and i walk away
On my way home and for the last two hours i have pondered the many facets of being Nigerian, from Visa denials to weird stares at various places, to inability to make plans and freely see the world cos of hate and distrust shown you by many cos of your passport, or just having to go through many levels of security at airports because of your Nationality. I like many other hardworking and level-headed Nigerians have had to prove myself time and time again because in the minds of many, Nigerians are terrible people. How can a nation with such talent, wealth, potential affluence, and people with great hearts be treated as scum?
I grew up in that country, was taught to care for my fellow human in that country, i was taught to love irrespective of tribe,creed, race, religious affiliation, economic caste etc, i was brought up to Love everyone, a trait which i hold dear to my heart and have taken with me on my sojourn on this earth.
My accent may hide my nationality, and even when i have given people many opportunities to guess where i was from, unless i purposefully gave it away, i never have been called Nigerian, but am quick to exclaim with smiles on my face that of a truth, I am Nigerian. I bleed Green white Green, I LOVE THAT COUNTRY and though time and time again she has failed me, I cant stop Loving her. And on days like this although i have tons of very important things to do, im here brooding over the fate of my first love of a nation, i have said countless prayers for her but cant help wonder why her?Why is she being raped time and time again by the same folks who should protect her? why has her pride been take away by the same people who should validate her? where has her hope gone? Why cant she be respected for the Giant she is and treated like many other countries who hope to be like her someday?My Heart bleeds for Her!!!!!!!
To Everyone Reading this, please pray for My Nigeria( whether you're Nigerian or not), For every one who has lost hope in her, please give her another chance, For those who have abused her name, brought shame and futility to her dreams and aspiration, for those who have cast aspersions on her, disparaged her and left her for dead; Nigeria forgives you. And for all those die hard believers in the future of our Great and Awesome Country, Don't relent on the dreams you have for her, dont give up on her. Together we would make Nigeria a proud Nation, her name would be on the tongue of many for good.
Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria, God Bless Nigeria!!!!!!!!!!!
Seleipiri Iboroma Seddon Akobo