It is so unfortunate and at times makes me think maybe we are jinxed as a people. Recently, zealots people are on the rise in the country, you can see them in every section of the country turning every conversation into some opportunity to slam the government.
There used to be a time when most of us, no matter where you stand politically want the best for the country. Today wanting the best for the country makes you a paid propagandist.
What is worse, they choose to display this anomaly by latching on any positive news about the country forgetting we are shooting ourselves in the foot. Over $70 billion of investment came to Africa in the last ten years. Of that figure only $4 billion came to Nigeria. Why?
The venture capital investment industry is driven by just two emotions; fear and political instability. Over 80 per cent of Nigeria’s industrial capacity is located in the South, the region protected from the decade long insurgency that has ravaged the north. Industrial capacity has quadrupled in recent years. New industries have sprung up. Lagos is now the Tech start-up hub of Africa.
Naturally, investors are eager to tap into this dynamic market. And just about when they announce their intentions, the self proclaimed activists and their army of saboteurs swing into action, describing how evil and the dictatorial the government is, manufacturing social unrest when there is non, scaring away investors into moving to safer climes to places like Ghana and losing thousands of potential jobs.
This is the Great Paradox of Nigeria. People want development and foreign direct investment (FDI). And when seeds of developments are sewn the same people see it as something that will rob favourably on the government, and would rather self sabotage than allow anything punch a hole on their narrative.
Nigeria borrowed a ton of money revamping the nations railway infrastructure. Terrorists, who cannot stand development attack these infrastructure and people rally behind the terrorists in celebration because it’s an opportunity to show how incompetent the government is.
And when the FDI needed for development is diverted to other countries we cite it as an example of a failed government, and the vicious circle self perpetuates. China, South Korea, Japan, Dubai developed because of Foreign Direct Investment. No government can develop a nation.
Do you think Twitter was happy basing its regional HQ in Ghana with its puny 8 million Twitter users over Nigeria with over 48 million Twitter users?
It’s tragic. Lagos is as safe as Accra, their investment portfolio is probably even safer, but we scared them away thinking we are hurting the Buhari government. In the West, there is a vast academic literature, known as behavioral finance, which is devoted to the topic of understanding market psychology. Their heart may be in Nigeria but they apply common sense, not emotions to decision making.
They know letting emotions govern investment behavior often leads to irrational decision making that can cost you dearly. So they opt to play it safe and seek safer grounds. Who lost?
Who losses? The government in Abuja? Of course, it is Nigerians. The thousands of jobs that could have been created for Nigerians with its attendant trickle down, and economic impact is forever lost.
Now here we are again, the current geopolitical situation in Europe has made it necessary for Europe to strengthen its relations with Nigeria, especially in the supply of gas. Nigeria has suddenly become a crucial partner of the European Union (EU) at a time when Europe is trying to rid itself off its dependence of Russian oil and gas. Heck a delegation from the EU visited Nigeria just last month and secured Nigeria’s commitment to step up its production.
This is the time that self proclaimed activists have chosen to write crazy OpEds claiming Nigeria is run by a mafia regime and does not have the capacity to step up production, and we have Nigerians backing them up. How stupid can we be?
We have a rich EU ready to pump billions into Nigeria’s energy sector to help boost gas production, and the self-saboteur brigades together with the brown envelope copy and paste media are already out in force trying scare the EU away. Who are they hurting with these senseless pessimism and activism? Buhari or our future generation?
Nigerians have to put on their thinking hats. Why are we destroying decades of Nigerian development with our own hands?
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Gharny Olusegun Yeku, after earning my higher national diploma in mass communication from Moshood Abiola polytechnic, I entered creatives world to explore my passion for photography and videography. In addition to my primary job functions, I was recognized by many for my commitment to nation building which I do through writing.