RETURNING TO NIGERIA
I had a long chat with a friend who is stranded in Nigeria.
He used to live here in Canada.
Five years ago, he went to visit family in Nigeria. While there, he met some old friends who were doing very well.
Days of discussions followed during which they impressed on him as to how much better financially he will do if he moved back to Nigeria.
They took him out to dinners and parties where he met movers and shakers of the society. They introduced him to them and spoke of his brilliance in public. These movers and shakers also impressed on him to come back home.
He came back to Canada and was flying like a kite. All he spoke about was the new Nigeria and the immense possibilities that existed.
He decided to move back, start up his company and set out on the entrepreneurial path.
Everyone told him to take it a step at a time and not uproot his entire family.
He didn't listen. He left.
The first week in Nigeria required the kind of adjustments he expected, but he had sold his house in Canada, liquidated his savings, so the sizable chunk of money allowed him, settle easily.
A fully serviced four bedroom apartment in Lekki. Kids in a private school. Wife with a new job. He ready to wear the toga of a businessman.
He set out. And begun calling his friends to tell them he was back for good and was ready to begin investing in the ideas they had spoken about.
The friends picked his calls at first and then with time they became scarce. He complained.
They said to him that they were so busy with their own businesses and life, so it was hard to actually keep up the communication with him and follow up with the investments and businesses he had begun on their recommendation.
He reminded them that they were the ones who told him to come so he expected them to follow up with him.
They told him that he shouldn't worry, that they will get back to him. They did for a while, but as the investments began to stutter, the calls dried up.
He became an island.
With time his money dried up.
The load of the family became heavy.
They left the self-serviced apartment in Lekki, for a two bedroom flat at the far outskirts of Ajah that was armed with a small generator.
He sold his car and had to take turns with his wife using her car as he kept chasing his entrepreneurial dreams since getting a job was proving difficult owing to his advanced age and the fact that he had not acquired a foreign post-graduate degree whilst in Canada.
The private school became unaffordable on his wife's salary.
He wanted to move the kids to a more affordable public school. His wife resisted.
They began to bicker.Bickering turned to fights.
Fights drove them apart.They separated.
During their separation, she met new people, men with more money, a willing profligacy and an eye for light complexioned beautiful married women with a foreign accent. Men who are sharks.
Sharks who were not interested in the abundance of single women in Nigeria but preferred the challenge that was involved in the chase of highly educated, successful married women.
She was vulnerable and all the sharks could smell it. They flashed luxury and 'fun' around her.
And she got infected with the Nigerian bug of living the 'good life.'
She was swept away by the joneses and flew up the ladder of success.
She filed for divorce and asked for full custody of the kids.
He tried to fight it but couldn't afford the fight.
He cried over the phone as he recounted his experiences and spoke of his decision to move back to Canada and start all over again.
My heart broke for him.He is a good guy.
It's sad how some people find it so easy to give advice and not think seriously of the cost of their advice.
If you had to pay money to give advice, I wonder how many people will be so willing to tell you how much better you can live your life.
I will do what I can to help him resettle.
I will not give advice on things am not sure of.
Instead, I will give material help.