This is because poverty is so rampant in speech and in thought, that if you ever want to be free from it you need to dissociate yourself from it and people who bear it.
This is not to say that poverty in Nigeria is not a real problem – it is.
But people who are often not directly affected by it seem to have a second type of poverty – which is simply a non-progressive mindset and the spirit of complaining.
For instance, It is one thing to not have funds for quality education.
It is another thing to see a scholarship opportunity and instead of applying, you say “na only big men children de get the scholarship na – them know who dem dey give.”
Such a person has already resigned himself to perpetual lack of progress and unwillingness to even make and effort. And such people, statements and ways of thinking have to stay very far away from you if you want to progress in Nigeria (or anywhere in the world or that matter).
It’s a concrete kind of poverty not to be able to see light at the end of the tunnel.
It’s a new kind of poverty not to be able to work towards a brighter tomorrow; to be so perpetually broke that you are not even thinking about saving and doing something for the future.
- To apply for a job, you will say “no job.“
- To start a business you will “no funds.”
- To raise capital you will say “na only big men banks dey give loans.”
- To partner with others, you will say “Nobody can be trusted, they will carry your money and run.”
- To read a book, you will say “no time to read.”
- Save money, you will say “na who don chop belle-full na im dey save”
Later you will say its sniper that is killing people; when you’re not even alive to begin with.
Real Nigerian’s are hustlers, not complainers. And we are known by that trademark all over the globe. We are resilient. Struggle makes us tough, not give up. It makes us band together not fall apart.
You must avoid the poverty mentality in this Nigeria in order to thrive. And when you pray against poverty what you are really praying about is to keep away from those people who talk like that and teach you how to talk and think like that.
Be up and doing my friend.
Take courage and keep going.
That’s the real Nigerian spirit.
Written by Ten Esan, Founder at EMB Investment Group, Associate at LSG Solicitors and General Counsel, Oniru Royal Family Estate.