Living abroad is not easy.
Unless you live in London, then take several seats, dear.
You’re in Nigeria annexe. Like I was saying, the difference between living abroad and living in Nigeria is so great; I wouldn’t know where to begin a comparison were I to start. From the aesthetics to the weather to the attitude to one of the biggest barriers – food!
Migration is no joke. I think Nigerians have found ways around most of the differences though. The one thing they have not found a way around is the freedom to bribe with reckless abandon. That is not something you find easily over there. If you’re playing with a higher power, perhaps you might get lucky with some top-level bribery. But you see this regular bribing our way through everything that we are so fond of over here? It won’t work.
If you have Japa’d or are preparing to Japa, congratulations.
Many are hungry for the opportunity, but few are able. Kudos to you for being part of the thousands abandoning Nigeria in droves daily. Don’t scoff. I have seen the queue at the U.K V.F.S office that stretches down to the end of Ajose Adeogun Way, Victoria Island. Thousands are clamouring to run away. They don’t even want to know what they are going to do abroad.
People just want to go. I can’t blame them. If I get the chance, I too would like to live in a country where the basics are so normal you don’t even know they exist.
But let’s not dwell on my dreams and aspirations. When you eventually Japa, know that you have to regulate your behaviour. There’s none of that “oga, make I see you sharply” over there. If you commit an offence, you will pay for it. Not through bribery. You will suffer the consequences. It’s as simple as that.
I saw the video of a Nigerian woman that hit a man’s car from behind in the U.K. She refused to admit to her mistake. So, they got into a heated argument. He was asking for her insurance details, but Aunty blatantly refused. She kept denying that she hit him. Which was funny because there was evidence. But who evidence epp?
Aunty said: “Lai! Lai! I didn’t touch your car, innit.”
I would have skipped the video in amusement, but shame held me rooted to a spot. Haba! Why carry the bad behaviour we enjoy exhibiting in Nigeria across seven rivers and seven seas? Why? I am sure she would have asked to “see” somebody if the police had been involved. All to avoid bearing the cost of her actions.
Note that I’m not saying bribery does not exist abroad.
I am saying that you can’t simply escape lawlessness or disorderliness by greasing the palm of a law enforcement agent with a few dollars. If you commit an offence, be ready to take responsibility and atone for it. Don’t embarrass us. We are plenty that is still coming behind.