The State Of Nigeria From My Standpoint: Part 1

I will try to share the current situation of Nigeria from my own point of view.

I will try as much as I can to stay away generalizations and assumptions. I will only state my personal experiences and/or confirmed facts.

My name is Jay Momnang, born and raised in the city of Port Harcourt, Nigeria. I AM NIGERIA

This is a series and in this part I will let you know my thoughts about the state of Nigeria from my earliest memories of Nigeria.

My earliest memories about Nigeria would be somewhere in the year 1989 (at least that's how far I can remember), when my younger brother was born. I remember this because we had a lot of visitors coming to the house to see us and my mom had been away for a couple of days. Everyone kept saying I am now old and I should take care of myself (typical).

So let's proceed. Between 1989 and 1993 Nigeria was at peace, calm and prosperous (at least from my eyes at the time).

I attended Police Children Primary School which I was fortunate to attend because my Aunty was a police officer and she helped my parents with getting admission for both myself and my elder brother.

The tuition fees were somewhere around N15 per term and was one of the best schools at the time.

At the time being a teacher, Police officer or even an Okada rider (Okada rider is someone that provides the services of transportation using a motorcycle as against a conventional taxi) was an honorable thing.

At the time if you missed your way in any state or you arrive late to a place you really don't know your way, you can go any police station and they will offer you a space to pass the night and ensure you are very well.

Business men traveling with heavy cash (at the time the banks weren't as sophisticated as now so there was heavy money laundering and it wasn't a crime) would go to the police station to pass the night and they were safe.

At the time we only ate Abakaliki rice and uncle Ben's rice. If your parents bought uncle Ben's rice regularly you were rich.

market-place

The streets of Port Harcourt was regularly cleaned hence the name "Garden City" because the city was attended like a garner attends a garden.

If you had N1 you were sure of a good meal. I remembered my dad giving myself and my brother 25kobo each for lunch which was a huge piece of yam and egg sauce at the school canteen with a cold glass of water.

Life was good. The streets were safe. Cultists were afraid of the police and cultists was only in the University and was hidden because if you were caught in any cult activity you would be dismissed.

Even the legendary Majek Fashek sang the song "Garri 1cup 1naira", and that was after an inflation that raised the price of GARRI from 50kobo to 1naira.

Everything changed in 1993, during the democratic elections between late Chief MKO Abiola and his rival Tofa. Although before that time folks were complaining of the Military government's corrupt practices and all.

I remembered my dad had to send us home to my grandma before the elections because it was rumored that there might be a civil war after the elections if Chief MKO wins the elections.

He was assumed winner in the inclusive elections and apparently there was no war but he was imprisoned for treason because he declared himself winner and the military head of state at the time jailed him for treason.

Nevertheless the Nigerian industries where still functional (at least the ones that were operational then) .

The Nigerian economy was experiencing all round growth. Even after the political unrest started in 1993.

Finally, I would like to state here that there has always been a socio-cultural division amongst Nigerians right from the amalgamation in 1914. From all the records and accounts of Nigeria given by people dead and alive, it is clear to see that there has been always that socio-cultural division or TRIBALISM if you want to call it that. This is also as a result of multi-cultural backgrounds of the natives of Nigeria.

I will put a halt here to end the part one. In the next part I will talk about what happened after the 1993 that pushed Nigeria into the state we are right now.

My name is Jay Momnang.
CTO/VP Mirus Empire LLC