Tuesday, 26 April 2016

15 ways to be the "CHANGE" you want to see in Nigeria - Prt2

Hello my fellow Naija people. It’s always a delight having you on my blog. Your best blogspot for news, event, inspiration and talk that inspire CHANGE. Work is in progress to make every visit to this blog a wonderful experience for you. Together I believe we can make the difference, in making our society, Nation and indeed the world a better place.

Part 1 of ’15 ways to be the change you want to see in Nigeria’ was published 24th of October, 2014 on this blog, and gratefully it had an impressive number of readers. Get it HERE if you missed it. This tells me that many Nigerians are ready to transit from complaining, the very act that have left us with more to complain about and embark on a more productive venture of being the change we want to see in our dear country Nigeria. Nothing changes, except we change, Nigeria will only change when Nigerians change. So let’s begin with some super easy things we can do daily, that can set us on the route to a New Nigeria in an amazing way ever.

Part 2 will feature 5 more ways and rounded up in part 3 which will bring to us the final 5. Below are highlights from Part 1.

· Daily Thank God for Nigeria.

· Pray for Nigeria

· Believe in Nigerians

· Respect Nigerians

· Keep Nigeria clean.

This is not a Leader, Followers trading blame game. This, like I like to call it, are “Super Easy things we all should do as leaders or citizens. By the way, wherever we are we are leading in one way or the other.

Keep the Road Signs: One of the popular radio stations in Nigeria at a time aired a radio show titled: “Oga driver.” Their jingle song is really interesting, and once it hits your radio waves it can’t be ignored. It was targeted on advising the general public on keeping road rules and regulations. A good one I must say, but Oga driver, you no dey hear.

Pictured above is traffic in Nigeria Vs traffic in the USA. Yeah, it’s good to advocate for good roads, but how we drive on the road is as important as the state of the road. Thankfully in Nigeria, no proper testing is required; all we need to get that driver’s license is =N=6,000 cash at hand. Our road laws are hardly kept or enforced so who will change that. The Police, Road safety, VIO or our Leaders? They are pushing to their limits to help out, but road users will need to drive responsibly and that could just begin the Change revolution we crave in Nigeria.

Driving in Lagos is crazy, but in Abuja it’s almost like madness. Do you see the amount of chaos on our roads when there is a bad traffic light and no road warden is in sight? You don’t want to be there, it is a total standstill until God sends help from above. We drive out of there and begin to rant against road agents or government; there are really some things we can change, if we decide to act properly on our roads. Now, the most provoking one is road users in Nigeria are so much in a hurry, most times going nowhere. They bypass all the road laws and get on the wrong lane and of course, they can get away with that especially when road law enforcers are not insight. Why does a road safety or warden have to wait or literally hide by the traffic light to arrest traffic light defaulters? And an arrest will at it’s best, generate some kind of tip from the defaulter and case close. Nigerians, lets bring order and safety to our roads. Drive carefully and obey road rules. When there is a traffic jam, join the queue and patiently wait for your turn and don’t form 10 lanes on a 2 lane road. That way, the traffic will move smoother. Adhering to this advocacy will definitely bring great change on our roads and to Nigeria as a whole. One key ingredient of a developed Nation is seen in a clean and organized road system. #Drivewell #BeTheChange.

7. Stop the Abuse: Abuse and insult have become a National trend in Nigeria, especially with 2015 elections just by the corner. Opponents employ it as a means of ridiculing their oppositions. It has even become a form of employment in Nigeria today, where people get paid just to stay on the internet to make issues against their opponent. Disclaimer: No, evidence of this so far, but speculations have it so and it is evident in the kind of social media battle that seems to be all over the internet. Some angry, some paid Nigerian citizens rant out abuses on Leaders, like they are saint. Anne Frank was right when she said: “The common man is every bit as guilty, otherwise, people and nations would have rebelled long ago.” The little wrong we do in our homes offices, market places and on the street, can seldom be differentiated from bribery, corruption and bad governance, should any difference exist, it will be location. I can boldly say, if you are not faithful in little matters, you will definitely smash all the rules in bigger issues.

Many Nigerians might crucify me for this. But, it is stated categorically in every religion to respect those in authority and it is just African to respect our elders/leaders. Every right motive gets muddled up in abuse. Every criticism laced with abuse will lose its value. Activism is a good course, criticizing can initiate change, but we must keep them constructive and meaningful. The best of intentions can be misunderstood when we abuse. Not many will like me for this point, like I said but there is no truer value that can set us on the right course like this one. No matter how bad our family or parent are, we could never ring it into their ears in abuses. It’s not African, it’s not Nigerian. Take me for my words, insulting our leaders will never ease Nigeria of her problems. Don’t want to bore you with too much write-up could have shown you samples of people who brought about change for their Nation, they were not people who spoke carelessly or abusively, they were people who looked for ways to be the change they want to see without necessary castigating anyone. Just by doing the right thing, they were able to influence government and leaders positively. Even when there is a need to criticize an act or policy it is so constructively done, it doesn’t miss its target. We don’t listen to people who abuse us, and our best and natural response to an abuse is abuse. Making it’s impact void and unhelpful with no real power for change. So let’s speak differently as a people who want to drive genuine change for Nigeria and we will see the revolution that will bring about our New and Great Nigeria.

8. Be Early, Be Effective: One of the civil service diseases as far as I am concerned is ‘wrong attitude to work’. Rightly said: ‘Attitude is everything’, the right attitude that is. 

Numbers of dedicated civil servants are so few, we can’t see them. I don’t want to make a case of the ones I know around me, because I can’t lay my hand on a good example yet. According to Mallam El-rufai in his book, The Accidental Public Servant, “It is a truism that no nation develops beyond the capacity of its public servants and the services they provide to our nation are both below expectations.” It will be a massive revolution in Nigeria, if civil servants are known for going to work early, staying on their jobs and been productive no matter their level or position. One of the delightful stories about El-Rufai when he was FCT Minister was that he ensured his staff came early to work. He would come early, sometimes and wait at the gate to lookout for late comers, and that kept everyone in that ministry on their toes. Getting to work early and doing your best to be more effective on your job as an employer, especially as a Civil Servant will revolutionize our civil service and bring about positive change and development to the entire nation. Early and staying the long haul gets the job done. #BeTheChange.

9.Become a reading Nigerian: 

It is popularly said that, “If you want to hide something from a Nigerian, keep it in a book.” It sounds so funny but how true. Knowledge, they say is power and Ignorance they say kills. If you say Education is expensive, try Ignorance. While Education cost you only your time and cash, it will deliver much more to you. Ignorance will cost you, your life and essence on earth and it delivers no dividend. Don’t just go to school, study, don’t just study, think and don’t just think, act.

Foundations for every action must be embodied with a series of study to enable you acquire enough knowledge that will aid in making your action more effective. We must always start by gaining the right knowledge we need to be able to act and be the change we want to see. “Reading is surely the road to success”- Anne Frank said, and quoting historian Stephen Ambrose- “I guarantee you the No. 1 asset that you’re going to bring to whatever it is that you’re going to do is reading. We, the human race, have not ever invented anything that can surpass reading as a way of learning.” Surveys have shown, if we study for just an hour daily on anything, we will be professionals in it. So let’s get going, pick up that book and read, it will make the difference. It is more alarming that even the schooled sometimes graduate as illiterates, because they are in school just as a societal requirement, with no plans of giving themselves to study, becoming truly literate and getting properly equipped to impact the larger society with their knowledge.

Let’s correct that notion by the white man, who came up with hiding stuff from Nigerians in a book thing. Let’s unravel every mystery and show the world that Nigerians are the most innovative, creative and productive people in the world. We are not just consumers, but producers of our own goods and services. That will happen only, when a good number of Nigerians, find great relevance in studying and getting properly schooled to effect change. Readers are not just leaders, Readers are highly productive people. So I am advocating to a good number of serious minded Nigerians, who want to be the change, they want to see in Nigeria to be Readers. The deal is 1hour a day. Of course that is just the minimal; we should spend more hours to read. Don’t forget, “Unravel that Oyibo’s mystery” and show the world that Nigerians have got what it takes to be a great Nation. #Study4Change. 

10.Strive to keep your social conscience awake:
I got this point from one of the most powerful women who have lived on the face of this earth, Eleanor Roosevelt. Eleanor Roosevelt, one time American first lady in the 1930s, refused to limit her roles to ceremonial duties; she immersed herself in the great issues of the day. Although she was born into privilege, she spent her life trying to improve the quality of people’s lives around the world. We all should daily live with that consciousness. The consciousness that I am socially responsible for the welfare of Nigerians. Yes, it sounds too huge to say “the welfare of Nigerians” but when we show love and care to one Nigerian everyday, you will be amazed how much positive impact we will be making. The UN and other foreign bodies have made it a point of duty to send aid to African countries, in the bid to help us deal with the many socio-economy problems that have plagued most of the countries and Nigeria is a great beneficiary of that. But when will Africans, in this case Nigerians stand up to help ourselves. Sadly, most of these aids when received is mostly spent on administrative or staff welfare/travels, and a very menial amount is actually used to care for the less privileged. Anyways, let me not dabble into NGO or global support issues. My advocacy here is that when we have enough Nigerians who care enough to live a life of positive impact, Nigeria and Nigerians will indeed change for the better. Few Celebrities, Politicians and Organizations in Nigeria are doing pretty well in their corporate social responsibilities. But more need to be done. Nigerians have to look out to helping one another more than ever. We are definitely in troubled times now, with insurgencies, political instability and other economy issues, and these times we must all show care and concern for one another and for the state of the Nation. We should live daily with the consciousness that ‘We have the responsibility to solve our own issues’ whether is economical, social, political etc. We all should be a Voice, a Hand or a Leg for positive change in any little way we can daily. #BeTheChange.

These are very little, easy and well known points. We have applied them as principles for our lives, families and careers with little or no consciousness of the ripple effect it has on Nation building or development. Let’s engage in these activities deliberately with the aim of making Nigeria, Africa and indeed the world a better place. And like magic, when Nigerians generate enough positive energy for change, the world will have no choice but to let us live in the great Nation we deserve. Yes we can and Yes we will be that Change.

Miss 15ways to be the change you want to see in Nigeria also needs to make a lot of adjustment in these areas too you know. This is not the saint talking to the sinner’s kind of thing. No, am on the sermon pews not on the pulpit. Putting this together, have helped to prompt me like never before, to stop complaining and start living the change I want to see in my dear country Nigeria.

Thanks for reading this article and making necessary adjustments. Every vision/dream is possible. We shall live in the Nigeria of our dreams and we will be a part of making it happen.

Part 3, which is the concluding part, will be out soon. It will get more practicable and interesting, watch out for it on this blog. This is your best blogspot for every Nigerian. A contact that will always impact your life for good and it’s just a click away.

Thank you great people of Nigeria, may God bless you and may God bless our dear country Nigeria.

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