This culture of ‘this is Nigeria’, popularized by Falz in his recent single, will be our greatest undoing in this country, and this is me putting it mildly.
For those alien to the lingo, it means a culture of dystopian bliss, where things and systems are deliberately made to fail and people normalize, even rationalize, it because, well, this is Nigeria.
You see, that culture of inherent mediocrity seeps through everything we get in this country, making us come to believe we aren’t cut out for finesse and expertise in doing things.
You pay a painter to do a painting job for you, and the result is a sloppy job, with very bad finishing. When you complain, he mutters under his breath that it doesn’t matter. After all, this is Nigeria.
You take your generator to be serviced by the technician. He dismantles it, fixes the issue, but ends up screwing in four nuts and bolts instead of the five he unscrewed. When you complain, he swears it doesn’t matter and that it will work just as fine. When you insist he should do the right thing as done in saner climes, he tells you, ‘Oga, this is Nigeria”.
You hire an electrician to fix a faulty wire connection in your home. He opens the junction box, locates and fixes the issue, but while covering the junction box (if he even manages to cover it afterwards), he leaves a couple of wires hanging loose. When you task him to leave it as he found it, he informs you it doesn’t matter, because, well, this is Nigeria.
I recently was at a barbershop where the barber attempted a DIY on his standing fan. He prised open the blade cover, located the issue, managed to fix it, but never covering the blade cover before putting the fan back to work. When I complained that those exposed fan blades were a potential safety risk, he nonchalantly replied, “oga, notin go apen. Dis is Nigeria!”
You see, this culture of ‘this is Nigeria’ has, over time, made us believe we can never get even the simplest of things right in this country. We have come to believe things should simply not work the way they work in other places, reinforcing a mediocre and subpar work culture in the process.
No nation ever grew on the back of a culture built on sloppiness and inefficiency. It’s a mentality we need to ditch if we are to make headway as a people and nation. Else, we’ll keep wallowing in mediocrity while the rest of the world advances ahead.