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Naija no dey carry last!

Naija no dey carry last!
October 09
22:27 2021

Hi there,

In the first part of this article, I shared my thoughts on Nigeria’s Independence and the importance of every Nigerian seeing themselves as part of Team Nigeria.

In this article, my emphasis will be on Nigeria’s greatest asset – Our people!. Yes, I am referring to Nigerians both at home and abroad.

Nigeria is a country with a population of over 200 million people. We are the most populous black nation on earth with Africa’s largest economy – endowed with numerous natural resources. We have Nigerians residing in every nook and cranny of the world adding value and doing great things.

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“Nigerians are known to be intelligent, hard-working people with a “can-do” and “never-say-never” attitude.” – Anonymous

This attitude is evident in various aspects of an average Nigerians life at home and abroad. Nigerians have turned to education and hard work as a means of escaping poverty to live a value-adding life.

As rightly stated by our Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo, “We have since become the most educated and most entrepreneurial nation in Africa. 10 of our 36 States have larger economies than at least 15 African countries. From our ranks, we have the most accomplished men and women, in the arts, the sciences, sports, technology and commerce.

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According to Rice University data, Nigerian-Americans are the most educated group in the United States. 61 percent of those over the age of 25 having a graduate degree, compared to 32 percent of the native-born population. Nigerian-Americans have a household income of $68,658 on average, which is greater than the national average of $61,937. This data reveals that Nigerians in the Diaspora add value wherever they reside and have become one of the most successful immigrant population in the world.

For the average Nigerian, the unofficial motto is “Naija no dey carry last” (“Nigeria never comes last”). This mantra is reflective in almost everything we do – from Music to FinTech, Literary works, Medicine, Entertainment amongst others. I would like to take a moment to celebrate the Nigerians who have made this possible. I am referring to Nigerians who are working diligently and ethically all around the world. Nigerians who refuse to compromise their values and integrity – turning their backs on bribery, corruption, fraud, etc. It is those people –  WE SALUTE!

We salute Nigeria’s techpreneurs for creating game-changing apps, computer programs and technologies that are making people’s lives simpler all over the world. We also salute our technology companies that are thriving and competing globally.

We salute our medical personnel at home – working in challenging conditions, nonetheless making the best of it. For those abroad, we salute them for contributing their quota to medical innovations around the world.

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We salute our Nigerian students in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions who can compete globally despite learning in challenging educational environments.

We salute those civil servants who have maintained their integrity while carrying out their duties.

We salute Nigeria’s military and paramilitary officers who are working tirelessly within the ambit of the law to protect our lives and properties.

We salute our sports heroes that have been a source of pride and joy. They have continuously brought honour to this country.

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We salute the players in our entertainment sector, who have made Nollywood into the world’s second-largest film producing industry. As for our musical artists, we hail them for topping worldwide charts and winning prestigious awards – you have made us proud!.

We salute Nigerians going through difficult times. My message to you is,  “Tough times never last, but tough people do” –  Robert Schuller. We are tough people and we would emerge victorious.

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Finally, we salute all Nigerians who are pushing and working towards a more prosperous and equitable federation. It will become a reality.  So once again, I wish you a Happy Independence Day!.

“There is no country in the world with the diversity, confidence, talent and black pride like Nigeria” – Binyavanga Wainaina

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Till the next time we meet here, remember we all have “A Role to Play.”

Bank-Olemoh is the senior special assistant to the president on education interventions.



Views expressed by contributors are strictly personal and not of TheCable.

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