Article

Opinion: Like Oliver Twist

by Jonas Dogara

About two weeks ago, I dey one airport for Africa with my Asian colleague and we just dey discuss travelling and other things. Then the guy say, ‘This airport is alright but too disorganised. If they organise it better it’ll be nice.’

For one moment, I surprise small and just dey about to answer ‘This airport? Are you kidding me?’ but I think am again and just nod my head and smile. Wetin the guy talk na true. No need to argue.

This airport wey we dey talk about so na correct one. No be like Murtala Mohammed Airport wey when Police search you bag finish, dem pass am to Army; Army finish dem pass am to Navy; Navy finish dem… you get the picture. Things dey work well, and you no fit waste time for there. The only issue be say e get plenty airports for Europe and Asia wey correct pass am for organisation.  And that na wetin my colleague dey talk about. The airport good, but e still need improvement.

The thing wey happen to me, na wetin dey happen to most of us for our country. We done live for country where things no dey work at all, so that every small thing wey work, na blessing. For example, a Governor go give contract make dem repair bad road and all of us go dey happy, dey praise God and the Governor. We dey forget say na this same Governor give the contract wey dem take construct this road two years before. And if to say dem do better work, the road no go need patching. Or you go to enter flight scheduled for 7am and the flight leave at 8am. People go say ‘Thank God o! Na only 1 hour delay. Normally, e dey pass like that.’

Even some of us wey done travel to places where things dey work well sef dey do the same thing. Somehow we no dey feel say we fit get those same excellent standards for our country. So, we no dey expect good service, infrastructure, leaders, etc. Because we no dey expect those things, we no dey complain when we no get them. We no dey demand for them. When we get pass wetin we dey expect, we go give thanks like say we done get the whole world. But deep down, we know say wetin we get no reach standard.

We know say to thank somebody for something (even when na him job e dey do) na good thing o. But after we say ‘thank you’, nothing stop us from being like Oliver Twist and to say ‘I want more’. We deserve more. We know say we fit get more. Governments and businesses for other countries dey provide more for their people, so why not our own?

We need to change this culture of not demanding. We need to demand things from our politicians, leaders and our government. We need to demand things from the people wey dey provide us services – telecoms, transportation, media, etc. We need to demand things from each other. If we no demand, maybe some people no go realise say dem dey misbehave. Dem no go know say dem performance no reach. And some people wey know say dem no dey perform, no go get any reason to improve.

As D’banj talk ‘I wanna have them all…’ we fit ‘have them all’. Not the ‘them’ wey D’Banj wan have o! But we fit get those things wey we need for our country.

This na @nfsqueezed

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About the author:

Jonas Dogara is a Nigerian, an engineer, a voracious reader, and a lover of a good laugh, all things artistic, musical, football and the Pidgin English language. He strongly believes in industry, responsibility and accountability as vehicles for growth as individuals and as a nation. He can be found on twitter @nfsqueezed and blogs at notfreshlysqueezed.blogspot.com

 

Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

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