Recently, a lot has happened to me including travelling to a city in Nigeria called Port-Harcourt for a medical update course. A lot of thoughts have crossed my mind, things have made me want to shout and sometimes, I've actually done just that. Now I know that my blog was initially created to be an interior design blog for the purpose of showing off my work but as I moved along, I felt the need to share with my readers, some of my personal experiences, thoughts on certain subjects and to some extent, topics that people readily talk about and to let them know that they aren't alone in the daily struggle of life.
Nigeria!, what has happened to us? to our intelligent children, infact the general population? Nigeria, the giant of Africa. Is that what we really are now or are we leaving on past glory? How did we come by that name? Has anyone bothered to think about it? Is it because of a football team that did well or because of our very large population or just the sheer size / land mass of our country?
I remember the enthusiasm I and many other children used to have to want to go to school. Did the computer age destroy us when it should have made us smarter and better? Is it the "I don't give a damn attitude of our leaders" or lack of basic amenities like good schools, roads, housing, pipe borne water, electricity? I look at our counterparts from other countries even African countries and I don't think that the internet age destroyed their kids. Our counterparts, at least most of them have their basic needs provided for them so they can concentrate on their studies. What most Nigerian children and youths do with the internet is social networking (facebook and twitter). Some don't even know what microsoft is or how to use it and would you really blame them? How many schools in Nigeria (private and public) bother to teach computer lessons as a part or their curriculum? And how could they, when they may not even have one in the principal's office and reception.
There are many University graduates, beautiful young ladies and handsome young men who when they open their mouths to converse is a huge disappointment and we claim English as our first language. Little wonder why we are now required to write certain English exams as post graduates if we intend to further our studies abroad. Tell me please, how would a graduate who can't communicate effectively land a good job? And we blame everything on the government. Yes for the most part they are really to be blamed but we are also partly to be blamed. Yes I said it, everyone of us;
- The lecturers that accept bribes from students even up to them primary school levels and allow them to pass exams they didn't do well in.
- The contractors who use substandard product to perform contracts hence the perpetually bad roads.
- The teachers who use the students in the public schools as farm hands instead of teaching them. Right now, there is a little boy in my house of about 12 years brought from the village who is supposed to be in J.S.S 1 and he can't read or write the alphabets or spell his name and I wonder how he got there.
- The private schools that employ unqualified individuals, some still university students, others not even in the University as their teachers. How can these children then sit for exams and pass when their teachers don't even know what they are teaching. Are we then shocked when they have WAEC and NECO results of 10% pass nationwide?
- The teachers and schools especially the private ones that keep kids in school till 4pm sometimes later and make it compulsory in the name of extra lessons when their main aim is extra money. Teachers giving primary school kids assignments that are secondary school level stuff. Sometimes I wonder if these are assignments given to the teachers in their own schools and they use the kids guardians to solve them. How do you expect a child to learn something they aren't thought and their parents do their assignments for them. A little cousin of mine in primary 4 was ask to draw the close and open circuit, a topic in my physics textbook. He wasn't even thought in school what it was. What I knew of primary school assignments is that you give homework on what you have taught them in school and as they grow they go into research.
- The parents are not left out as everyone if now working and there are little or no available housemaids and even the available ones can't be trusted, so we end up putting our kids in school at such an unbelievably early age and leave them there till work closing hours.
So like I said earlier I travelled to Port-Harcourt and the ride was so rough! The driver entered every available pothole on the road even as it rained. When I complained, a passenger's reply was "couldn't I see that the road was bad". I was so shocked by this response. Next thing they said the driver was old enough to be my father and I thought to myself "shouldn't he be more careful ten?" At that point, it really hit that there might be very little hope for Nigeria if every bad thing can be justified by a person's status (riches or age) and religion.
Below (1)copy of a letter of apology written by one of my patients for missing her hospital appointment
(2) Nigerian roads in the process of construction in the last 1 year, still same