Call it some kind of moment I’m having right now, but I just got into some kind pro-Naija mode. I’m always pro-Naija but today is especially different. I’m watching random naija videos, and I come across probably, what has to be the video of the year – Eldee’s One day. Watching it reminds me of the rot we Nigerians seem to stay in.
The rot I’m talking about, is whining. We as Nigerians stay whining – We complain and complain and complain. Of course there’s nothing wrong with complaining, and I know we will always complain from now till tomorrow because that is part of human life. And with the state of things in our country, we’re expected to complain. What happens after complaining though, is what matters most. Do we complain and complain and then go and drink small stout and sleep? Or do we complain and try to do something.
I don’t need to go into the issues we have in Nigeria, as we all know it already. From security, to health care, corruption, no electricity, fuel scarcity, mass embezzlement, religious conflicts, kidnapping, armed robbery. I mean, I’m beating a dead horse. We all know about this. Knowing and complaining is the first step in change, but knowing and complaining alone will never get us to our goal unless we act.
We (as youth) can’t depend on our parents to do anything at this point. A lot of our parents are thinking of retiring from jobs, and finally resting after a tough life. In addition the older generation seems to have accepted that Nigeria will be the way it is – almost like a defeated mentality. For us young ones however, our best years are still ahead of us, so this is the time we can effect our change. This is our time to take our future by our hands. Whether you reside in Nigeria or you are in diaspora, if you still have love our country Nigeria, then this is your business whether you like it or not.
In, January 2011, Nigeria will be having the presidential election that will determine our leadership for the next 4 years, and probably 8 years. 8 years is a very long time to have another round of bad leadership. In 8 years, you can be done with under-graduate and graduate studies and be working for about 2 years. In 8 years, you can be married with 3 kids. In 8 years, you might have given up on Nigeria. So I say, we can’t wait 8 more years. Now is the time that we can change our destiny. Now is the time we can say, we no do again… No be like so it suppose be… We no wan do am like this anymore….Enough is Enough.
What can we do? We might not be able take over the government literally, but we can vote. Yes, we can Vote. Even if it’s for the lesser of 2 evils, we can still vote, and we should vote. If you vote, then you’ve said your piece. You’ve had your voice heard, and you’ve done your part. You’ve made peace with yourself, and you can complain on with good reason. If you vote, you’ve inadvertently said, “I’ve done my part, Now it’s up to God.” So I urge all Nigerians with the capability, to register to vote, and vote come January 2011. Don’t assume others will vote. One vote does actually make a difference. One extra vote in every Local Govt Areas in Nigeria will give you 774 more votes than you had before.
To Nigerians in diaspora like myself that might not be able to vote, we can raise awareness. Most of us have family in Nigeria, that we can encourage to vote, and exert their own piece of change. We can inform other Nigerians outside Nigeria so their voices can be heard also. Never underestimate the power of a large public outcry, and pressure from citizens. The voices of citizens in diaspora affected the holocaust, and the biafra war, so please, don’t be afraid to let your voice be heard. On facebook, on twitter, hi5(lol), and to your friends. Even though we are not in Nigeria we still get affected by Nigerian leadership as long as we are Nigerians. Let’s make our voices heard, and let’s make it known that we want change. We want a leader chosen by us, and not by bureaucratic BS. Educate yourselves, and stay informed. Don’t be one of those that don’t know anything happening in Nigeria, but always seem to complain with no basis.
Call me naively optimistic, but I truly believe we are on the verge of a major turn around in Nigeria. I feel like, one day I’ll tell my kids that it was our generation that flipped it around. We keep saying Nigeria will never change, but I say, No… Nigeria must change. It can’t be like this forever… It just can’t. I mean, is anyone with me on this? It has to change. And my belief is this our time. We will no longer accept crappy health-care, we will no longer accept corruption, we will no longer accept bad roads, we will no longer accept no electricity, we will no longer accept religious conflicts that destroy our cities, we will no longer accept a dying education system. It has to stop. It just has to. If not when Nigeria turns 50 then when? When we are 100? or 200?
I’ve chosen not to dwell on the negative in the present, but rather the potential positive in our future, and with that being said I urge all my fellow Naija people, from 18 to 75, please let your voice be heard. Vote! Change can actually happen now if we believe and act.
For more information on what you can do to help, visit: www.enoughisenoughnigeria.com