NIGERIA: The Big Brother That Has Refused To Grow
Respect, just like freedom is not given on a platter, it is demanded and earned. Respect accorded individuals or nations out of courtesy is thrown off when push comes to shove. This is evident in our daily personal lives and as a nation.
Permit me to drive home my point with some personal stories.
My Awala is the firstborn, and first son in a family of fifteen. His father had three wives but somehow tried to raise the children to live in peace and harmony. Unfortunately, he died quite early, and Mr Awala took over the responsibility of taking care of his father’s large family. He ensured all the children of his father stood on their feet as men and women in their own right. Ironically, as others were striving to succeed with the support, Awala, their elder brother gave them, himself seems to have lost the zest for growth.
He too married like his father, as he took five wives. His personal family started growing really fast. He kept sending his children to his brothers and sisters, to cater for them on his behalf. Anytime any of them frowns at his current irresponsible state, he would remind them of how he took care of the whole family after the demise of their father. He would tell them they owe all their success to him. And that if not for him, they would have ceased to exist long ago.
To avoid unnecessary disagreement, and in the spirit of peaceful co-existence their father had taught them, they kept tolerating their elder brother and the nuisance he and his family had become.
After a while, Awala died. His direct siblings also died, leaving their children, who are now cousins to continue the family lineage. The younger generation, though aware of the family connections, is now tired of Awala’s children that still flaunt themselves as the head of the family dynasty, even when they contribute little or nothing to the family purse. To make matters worse, anytime the family name is mentioned for an evil act outside, a careful study would show that it is one of Awala’s grandchildren.
As it stands, other members of the family are distancing themselves from the Awala’s. They have stopped according to them the respect their father had always demanded from his siblings and also the support and open access to the homes of any of the family houses they previously enjoyed. The descendants of Awala are now over the place calling their father’s brothers and sisters infrared and ungrateful beast. They blame every other person for their woes and exonerate their father’s irresponsible nature. And themselves that chose to learn such traits from their father.
The Nigeria of today is likened to the Awalas’. Esan people used to say, “orhi one vbon right, oki gha vben ekpen”. That’s someone that does not have money/wealth, should have respect and good character. But the case of Nigeria is not so. We have successfully underdeveloped our nation with our lifestyle, and we are now exporting these negative traits outside, making our host uncomfortable.
We cannot continue to threaten the world with our nuisance value of two hundred million people, claiming to be giant of Africa. The World already is tired of showing us respect as fellow humans, hence the hatred we are receiving from all angles in the international community. From Asia to America, from Europe to Australia, even at home in Africa, we are being told unambiguously that out nuisance value has gotten to the breaking point, and the world can no longer tolerate it.
Ghana is deporting Nigerians, Chad and Niger are more secured than the so-called giant. Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Angola, Botswana, and other African nations that used to shiver at the mention of out names are now brazenly denying us visas, to enter their countries, and we still think the problem is outside?
The anger and hatred we are reciprocating to those nations should be directed at ourselves. From the followers to the leaders, we built this mess together, and until we fix it, we will remain that big brother that has lost the respect of his younger ones because he has refused to grow!
If you see the cub of a lion in your farmland, you will run and abandon that farmland because you know obviously that a lionness is not far away, and you know what the lionness can do if you’re caught. But if you see a kid in your farmland, you can carry the kid and even hunt for the goat, and take it too. Nigeria, as it stands has become a goat that every nation can throw sticks at.
We must rise as a people to take back our place, among other nations of the world!
Social Watcher, writes from Edo state.
Xenophobia #Humanity #SocialJustice #SocialEquity #WorldPeace #NigeriansRise #RevolutionNow
IDEDE Oseyande, a graduate of the Federal University of Technology, Akure, is an unrepentant believer in the Nigeria project.
His concern for the actualisation of a prosperous nation and the continent, in general, is reflected in his written works.
He currently runs an online advocacy platform (www.socialwatchdog.ng) where he engages the government and the people.
Among his published works are ‘What is Left of What is Right?’, ‘The Portrait of a Revolutionary Leader’ and ‘Warri No Dey Carry Last’.
He is a guest writer for several blogs and his Attitudinal and Behavioral Coaching classes has transformed many lives.