How Nigerian Are You?

I Rep Nigeria
I Rep Nigeria

I am not certain if it’s maturity or the fact that I’m in a foreign nation, but for the most part, it seems like when Nigerian youth travel abroad for whatever the reason they tend to develop a strong sense of pride about their motherland.

This statement couldn’t be more true in every aspect of living from the food to music to everything under the sun. Let me use myself as an example; When I used to live in Nigeria, I could count the number of times I spoke pidgin English…, infact sometimes some of us were scolded for it. I used to dread the idea of wearing native/African traditional wear to any occasion, especially iro and buba. The smell of any kind of soup (well, except ogbono) turned my stomach because it indicated I was going to eat that gross looking eba, amala or starch. I lived with cable all my life, so Nigerian movie or music was not exactly a staple on my play and watch list. The list goes on and on. Not that I did not have any pride in my country, or never did anything “traditional”….No. What I’m trying to convey is that after I moved to America, my Nigerian pride changed from a shy “Hi, I was born in Nigeria” to a loud “Damn right I’m Nigerian…Bayelsa, Nembe, Edo, 1/4 yoruba…My village rules…yeah”. I also fit speak pidgin pass pesin wey dem born for village….you wan try. I don’t even have to mention the global effect of African music and ankara on me.

I am pretty sure most of you can empathize with me. Everyone has their stories on how their African pride has been revamped and boosted – which is a very beautiful thing, if i must add. We can also share our stories on how we defend our continent when non Africans question our mode of living back home. Of course, we scream and refute their statement and say Africa is this, Africa is that, we have this, invented that and living like this. BUT, how many of us know about Africa (Nigeria to be specific)? How many of us know the number of countries in Africa without guessing or googling? Do you know our first president or how many states in Nigeria? Can you mention the countries that Borders the east, west and north of Nigeria. Do you know the first military president and what political parties we have….or their names? Can you also mention 5 living and dead Nigerian legends? How many of us know what ken saro wiwa did? and why he died? How, why and when the Biafra war began? Can you recognize the Biafran flag? Do you know who Gani Fawehinmi or Dele Giwa is?

Yes, to know nigeria isn’t all about aceing her general knowledge. That’s only a fraction of it – our memories, grassroot, green passport, tongue, genes, stories, and so many more make us truly Nigerian. Still knowing our general knowledge is important…imagine someone defending her country armed with such information as compared to another who only defends hers by shouting the loudest about nothing. As trivial as it may seem, we ought know learn them and make our country truly proud when next we defend her.


  1. Maturity has got nothing to do with "how proud you are to be Nigerian". In a country that's known as a melting pot, people are free to adopt whatever cultures and ideas they feel like and the fact that I do not wear a green and white shirt with an "I BE NAIJA" logo, speak pidgin english, stock up on the latest dbanj CDs, go for any of the nigerian reunions, or date black men for that matter, does not make me less mature!

    This seems to let any crappy article be published on its site…well that's one Nigerian culture it needs to do away with – the lack of quality control!

    • What are u talking about naija girl?… did u even read the article?…. LOL. It seems like u read line 1, and saw a picture and started commenting…lol.

      Anyways… I understand what the author is saying. Repping Naija is much more than loving the superficial things about nigeria i.e. music, fly tees, and naija reunions but it's actually about knowing ur country in and out… it's history… it's legends…and it's culture… it's mistakes, etc.

    • Naija Girl Jaguda needs to start quality control by deleting your Comment. You obviously didnt read the entire article. Nobody is asking you or suggesting that u have to wear green white green or Listen to Shina Peters to be Nigerian or better yet date a Nigerian man to be considered Nigerian. the article is only suggesting that you know more facts about your Nigerian History and culture… If you like date Mexican, Chinese or a Whiteman thats your cup of tea.. there are already too many Nigerian women to go around for the fewer Nigerian Men.

  2. Naija girl definately did not read the article in it's entirity. You are completely foolish for commenting without understanding.

    I agree with jaguda, naija pride is much more… Unfortunatel Im one of the 9jas in Yankee that is unable to answer a few of those question….at least now I know how many countries they are in Africa.

    Good write up.

  3. One Babe like that, this is a really good article. I can relate with this article becos, when i was living in Nigeria the only things that appealled to me was western Lifestyle… I totally agree with you, We as Nigerians need to know the history of our country. we should also know about our own village history.

  4. Thanks for this article, you really raised an important point. Most people that are 'Naija till I die' do not even know the basic facts about the country that they are so proud of and that's kinda sad. If you attended primary school in Nigeria, you will know some of the history and other basic facts but as we mature, we should try to delve deeper and get to know our country better.

  5. I love this article. I just started getting to know the key facts about Nigeria because my boyfriend would always challenge me with his knowledge when ever we spoke about Nigeria. I read the newspaper online now, once a week and i ahve also added Nigerian literature to my personal library. And for that Naija girl, you are not serious ooo, did you even read the article, please do not claim Naija if that is the case, call your self Yankee girl..Olodo!

  6. OMG!!!!!!!! I completely concur with the author on this.. because when I was Nigeria I barely knew anything about the local artists until after I left! Ummm… naija girl maybe you have read the article to its entireity.. you make it sound like you are being personally attacked! The author made no mention of you being immature! This article is not about maturity in your day to day life!!!!!!

  7. Who ever wrote this….BRILLANT! More light should be shed on this! And i do believe that Dr. Reuben Abati had this at heart when he published " A nation's identity crisis" ( this na my own two cents! Make persin no come cut off of head abeg)

    I would admit, when i was back in 9ja, b4 i watch any Nollywood movie, heaven and earth go come down! i even frowned upon Dbanj's "Why me"!

    Now, haaa…na me get the 411 on things! No shakin'.

    But it isn't all about that! it's about our history, how we came to be, Igbos, Yorubas, Hausas… all of us! our union, our trials and our tribulations, what truly makes us Nigerians. When we recite our national anthem do we understand its content? do we know " the labor of our heroes' past?" to know that it will never be in vain?

    these are the things (in my opinion oh!) that makes us Nigerians…. opening our eyes and heart to what was and is! ken saro wiwa stood up for the Niger Delta and yet those issues are still brooding as i type this!

    It isn't all about the music, the ankara, the food, the colors of our flag, it is about the suffering, the tears, the sweat, the blood of our forefathers, whom, without them, we wldn't be where we are today! we wldn't be able to stand proud and say "i am Nigerian and i am proud"!

  8. This is nice article. It's amazing how many Nigerians don't know jack about Nigeria… The history of our country, and culture, our pre-colonial history and the effects of colonialisms, Our presidents etc. Everyone can wear green and shout "Me I be Naija" but they can't even tell u how many states nigeria has. Educate yourselves people. Great job One Babe Like Dat.

    Naija Girl, your comment shows that u don't read… na so people dey fail exam…lol

  9. If you click on my name you can see my blog. And I definately agree with this article. Even before I saw this article I made a video on how Nigerian Americans who cannot speak their language fluently. And it matches with this completely.

    This article changes my game up completely. I'm going to definately do all this. But all I have to do is ask my father. These are things that you just have know, in order to fully know where you came from.

    Chinyere I'm with you girl! I knew the music before I got there, but after I got back, I found some new artists!

  10. lol double prince and abibaba thank you for setting naija girl straight..this girl(naija girl) please i will ADVICE YOU TO LEARN TO READ, BEFORE YOU SIT ON YOUR COMPUTER WITH YOUR DUMB ASS COMMENTING ON SHIT YOU DIDNT EVEN READ….

    one babe like that i feel you…. good article as always

    Now back to naija girl …you are truly dumb i wish i was standing in front of you because i would have hit you on your head for that comment you made…..OLODO..ODE

  11. I just admire articles I can relate to. Job well done jaguda team, this is really good. I came to Houston from Nigeria to go to college and since then my Nigerian pride has changed for the better. I only used to be familiar with popular childhood Nigerian music we just had to know, but now lol I even have sunny ade on repeat on my iPod. As for the general knowledge. You are too right about it. Most nigerian youths here (especially those that haven't seen home since over 15 years) act like they would die for heir motherland in a heartbeat, they are president of Nigerian/African organizations, they know the last traditional dance and they are the first to wear traditional ooutfits to class. A couple of my friends even have map of Nigeria tattoo on them. I understand that's all gravy. No hating at all, I love their sense of pride. But when it comes to disscusions about the lastet Niger delta situation or yar adua's health talk they turn a silent face like u are speaking French.

    Get educated people.

    • Nice Article… Princess I hope you are attending Umu Igbo Unite Convention this weekend In Houston TX… Make sure you invite your friends and family out. cos we are coming from far places. we want to see what houston has to offer… I am excited about the networking experience and socializing opportunity that this weekend would offer. I am also looking fwd to experiencing the Igbo culture with Igbo and non Igbos.

      Friday July 31th – August 2nd 2009. Get ur tickects Now for $60. here is the Link… and the Code is "jaguda"..

  12. Thank you so much for sharing this. It really convicted me. I have spent more time outside Nigeria than I have inside it but it is my country (and I did spend the most CONSECUTIVE time there). I know how easy it is to fail to learn these things simply because you are in a different culture but your article has made me realize I need to at least make an effort. After all, I am returning to Nigeria some day.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here