As always, I am filled with joy when my phone beeps and it's a notification that someone just commented on my blog post. So, on this faithful day, I got approximately 2-3 beeps from the same person, someone I now consider a friend, +Tina Webster . She liked a particular post of mine and she dropped a link to one of hers. I checked it out. It was a video on you-tube about how she'd fallen for someone (an African) who used her as a means to obtain a green card. After I watched the video, I became quite upset with Africans especially my countrymen - Nigerians. I marveled at the extent they'd go to get a green card and all for the quest of greener pastures. I am a Nigerian and a proud one too, don't get me wrong. The country however, can be a sad, sorry excuse sometimes.
It's not that I'm unaware that these things exist. It's just I never got to meet a victim of it one on one before now. Until recently it was something that happened to people I didn't know and the stories revolving around them usually suggested that they were very well aware of the terms and conditions of the marriage. Most of the time, the term "contract marriage" was use to describe such happenings implying that both parties consented to the agreement. The men often came back home bragging and intending to marry a Nigerian wife now that they are properly situated abroad. Most of them already have a child or two with the women and back then in my little childish mind I pondered over a few usually unasked questions;
- Why would these women bother with marrying someone they are well aware would leave them after a set period?
- Why would they bother with getting pregnant for someone who doesn't love them and raising the child alone or virtually so.
- Why do these Nigerian men believe that the only means to make a decent living is to travel abroad and end not making a decent living afterall?
- What was the desperation all about?
I pondered but my question remained unasked and therefore unresolved. I grew up and became a bit wiser than the child. I had a few experiences of my own (proposals) . Some of these men came back, brandishing a child or two on one arm and proposing marriage with the other.
Until i watched the video, I had no idea that they had a choice of select whether or not to pursue and prey on a black or white women. Tina made it clear that her ex-husband always pointed out that he would have preferred a white woman. I afraid to agree that he would have preferred a white woman but he's simply reason is because the average black man feels inferior to even the most inconsequential white. Regardless of their country of origin. This kind of reaction doesn't just happen outside Nigeria, It is very much with us. We often call it the "COLONIAL MENTALITY". You can imagine a situation where we are all on a queue and a group of Chinese men walk in and go straight to the counter and are attended to without delay in the hopes of snagging a few bucks for tips. I call it the "POVERTY MENTALITY".
The dream of many young girls now is to aspire to get a husband abroad to marry, either a black (Nigerian or African) or white. Anything to get out of the country. They get there, find their footing and abandon the initial target in search for new ones. Sometimes, these young ladies are unlucky, the men marry them, get them pregnant and then proceed to abandoning them in Nigeria sometimes with no means of livelihood. Other times with promises to come back for them when their travel papers get sorted out. As a consequence you find many young married women with children, husbands abroad and haven't been seen or heard from in many years. Some of the women become baby factories and service homes for whenever the man comes into the country.
So guys and gals, men and women, look before you leap. Love is no longer blind. It now has two very bright eyes. Dear Nigerians and Africans, who builds your country while you are all outside it looking for your greener pastures? Remember the grass is not greener on the other side because it was created that way. It is greener because its citizens worked hard at watering it.