Nigerians Culture of Shortcuts

Elizabeth Otike Written by Elizabeth Otike · 1 min read >

The Nigerian mindset to shortcuts for everything is unhealthy. Most people would do it knowing that they would regret it, or it would cost them something later in the future, but as the saying goes “something must kill a man” and Nigerians really love using this quote as a response to this bad attitude.

Yesterday, there was a commotion at my neighbour’s compound. Apparently, they had bypassed Ikeja electric connection and had a hidden illegal connection that they used at their house. Some of the disco officials had come earlier and it seemed they offered them KOLA and sent them on their merry way. Thinking they had gotten away with their crime, they continued until yesterday when they saw the taskforce at their home.

What was funny was that the officials they had allegedly offered bribe to were with the taskforce and they denied my neighbour’s claims, even helped bundle them in the van. Now, I hear the bill they were given plus fines is an outrageous amount.

Looking back, the first visit by the officials should have made them rethink their illegal connection, but nah, they probably thought they were wise, and their ruse would continue for a very long time. I’m sure the embarrassment and the financial burden incurred might still not 

Most of us do this every day. From offering tips to jump a cue, to giving KOLA to get a favour, etc. It is a habit that is inculcated in us since childhood, as we watched most of our elders do the same thing. I believe this contributes to the county’s backwardness. 

This habit is a two-way thing though and both parties are culpable. If you do not receive a bribe or a favour or be in cohorts with someone taking a shortcut it won’t happen. Most times, it might save us from a bind, but really, it also comes back to bit us in the behind one way or another. 

These days we have people, a large part youths, engaging in several quick money schemes, trying to get rich quick but not wanting to work for it. In other words, wanting to take a shortcut to wealth and not appreciate hard work.

We sometimes do not think about the repercussions of this mindset on our character and the nation as well. This bad habit can be described as a culture for Nigerians, one that has lasting negative effects. 

We should acknowledge that we cannot continue like this. The society needs a revamp, and it starts by actually acknowledging that there is a problem and identifying the problem.

Then we must take a stance for change. A stance for change starts from analysing how we can tackle the identified problem and making a decision. Government aside, this is a personal thing that is unique to everyone.

Let us also understand that the bright future we all want for Nigeria, starts with the change that we effect now, one that is long overdue.

#MMBA3 #Lillybeth’scorner

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