Happy Independence Day to Nigeria
What a day to post my first blog on Medium! Happy Independence day to Nigeria. I was very hopeful when Muhammadu Buhari was elected as Nigerian’s president and I am still hopeful today. Nigeria is a model to Africa. It is Africa most populated country; with some estimated population around 170 Million and rising. It is so big that one of my Nigerian’s friends once told me that one in every six black people alive is a Nigerian. Crazy right? Economically it is an African super power, with an estimated GDP around half a trillion US dollars.
My love for Nigeria dates back to the day I was born. My mom was a business woman who bought canned food and other household appliances from Lagos, Nigeria and sold them in Togo (My home country). She often brought eggs, big bottles of Fanta, shoes and many other exciting gifts for me as well. These memories led me to visit Lagos in 2014. While in lagos I stayed Sabo-Yaba.
Lagos is an exciting place. Everyone you see on the street is, without a doubt, an entrepreneur. The traffic is real and most people pretty much hustles to get by. Electricity is not guaranteed 24/7 but many small business owners have their generators to help them get electricity in the event of a power outage. Every day presents its challenges that many in Lagos have to defy to reach their goals. Nevertheless I had a great stay and was very inspired by the culture and the can-do attitude of many people living in Lagos.
The struggle on home soil has helped many Nigerians remain very competitive abroad. According to many findings, Nigeria has produced more doctors, lawyers, and Engineers in the UK and In the U.S than any other African nation has. Some papers suggests that there are close to 4000 Nigerian doctors in U.K alone. Such a huge number! Imagine if Nigeria could bring half of these talented people back home.
Not every talented Nigerian has stayed abroad. One of my mentors, Jason Njoku, retuned home to start Iroko TV. It is known today as the Netflix of Africa. It attracts hundreds of thousands of viewers across the globe. Many have returned to start companies like JUMIA, known as the amazon of Africa. Thanks to these aspiring tech entrepreneurs, Nigeria has its own Groupon (Dealdey.com) It has its own vesion of pandora (http://iroking.com/) Its own itunes (http://www.gidilounge.com/) Its own entertainment hub (dobox.tv) just to name a few.
Nigerian artists and actors are the envy of the world. The likes of P-square, Tekno, Tiwa Savage, Yemi Alade, Wizkid, Davido, Don Jazzy and many more have alway kept Africans and millions around the world very entertained. On the screens, actors and actresses like Mercy Johnson, Omotola Jalade, Genevieve Nnaji, Jim Iyke, Ramsey Nouah, Mary Remmy Njoku and Chinedu Ikedieze have redefined and set the new standards in African movie industry. I am sorry if I didn’t mention your favorites here. The list is too long.
To conclude I have lots of hope for Nigeria despite it’s recent struggles. The fall in the global oil prices has left the Nigerian economy in the dark. It’s Naira has fallen, leaving many companies short of operating cash. The unemployment rate is still high, the infrastructure, as I witnessed in Lagos, needs lots of work. But one thing is for sure, Nigeria will keep fighting to get out of these challenges. I have a dream that one day Nigeria will become not only one of the richest nations in the world but will have one of the most prosperous citizens at home. I also have a dream that one day Nigeria will have a permanent seat at the UN security council. Nigeria is rich in resources, rich in talent and ideas and that, without a doubt, will help it become the world super power in the near future.
In the future I will be covering topic on Technology, traveling, entrepreneurship, politics and some random stuff. Stay tuned