A Nigerian YouTuber residing in the United Kingdom was interviewed by the BBC and he disclosed the Nigerians’ strategies with their japa plans. He told the BBC that Nigerians use education as a strategy to Japa (relocate) to the UK and also bring their dependents like spouses along. He stated that Nigerians do not necessarily need the degree they came to the UK for, they are only using it as a means to an end to escape Nigeria’s hardship.
The Nigerian internet has been agog over that particular interview; several Nigerians have called out the guy for granting the interview; some called him a snitch, others are insulting him claiming that he is burning the bridge after he crossed over so that others won’t cross.
The public uproar from Nigerians, especially the ones claiming that they have been saving up to Japa too but this guy’s interview wants to block the way for them got me thinking about the number of people that want to leave Nigeria. A lot have left already in droves and it’s scary that the number of others preparing to leave too in search of greener pastures is high and above the ones that have already left.
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My question is; must everyone leave Nigeria? Yes, there is a bad government, and yes there is a lack of jobs but if we all leave, who will be left behind to help rebuild the country?
The hard truth is that aside from the glitz and glams, the colourful social media picture posts from those that have japad, not every one of them is having a good time, some are still not surviving out there, some are still struggling; the United Kingdom itself currently facing economic hardship, inflation is on the rise, same with most economies of the world; it is not always how most of the japa enthusiasts think that it ends up being.
Although there might not be enough jobs in Nigeria there are a lot of opportunities, I can attest to that, you just need to learn how to plug in and tap into it but the enthusiasm for Japa has blinded most Nigerians’ eyes to see this. Everyone must not be gainfully employed by the government. There is no country in the world (not even communist China) where the government is the number one employer of labour; citizens sprang up, created jobs for themselves and extended employment to other persons.
This whole japa conversation is tiring, the amount the UK alone makes from Nigerian international students if invested back into the country will go a long way in helping the economy of Nigeria.
The UEA did not become what it is today by every citizen of the country fleeing the country in search of greener pastures when they are still underdeveloped economy in the late 90s and the early 2000s, same with Singapore, neither did the Chinese flee China in face of economic hardship, even post WW2 Japan. Citizens joined hands with the government to build the economy until it became a world-class economy.
Nigeria is our home and there is no place like home. Please let us stay, join hands and rebuild it.