What Would You Do To Be Rich? Politics, Music Or The Legit Way?

Everyone wants to be rich, and that is okay. I mean, life, of course, would be way easier without having to worry about paying the next rent or school fees or doing nice things for your loved one or taking a vacation. The question is what would you do to be rich? What type of richness do you really want? When you have a conversation about wealth with the average Nigerian youth, their ambition and belief in possibilities grow on you. They simply believe they would make it come what may, and that is cool. The only challenge I see with some of them is the type of role models they sometimes unconsciously look up to.

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First, we have the Nigerian politicians, our wonderful lawmakers which consist of 95% of lawbreakers; with their flashy cars, impressive mansions, and exotic lifestyles. Some young people nurse secret ambitions to be politicians not because they care about the people or country at large but because of what they can fraudulently get out of being in government just as the majority of those there at the moment. Who would not want to be the ‘olori ebi’ or ‘jagaban’ of his or her state, milking the state’s resources for what it’s worth? Who wouldn’t want medical trips abroad due to a headache or broken fingernail? Some of these politicians claim to have had money before venturing into politics. Okay, so, why are you in office? Isn’t it to recoup the cost of getting there and more? They all really should be investigated and also made to earn modestly, just as the average civil servant.


Next, in line to the politicians are music artistes or entertainers. Majority of them portray being rich as having expensive ‘bling’ to wear, pretty girls around, destination weddings with the ‘TDH’ guy, champagne pops, parties, weed, designer clothes, always being in the news, etc. This misleading culture which always emphasises making fast money (sometimes the wrong way) dominates the TV, radio, magazines, etc. and makes it impossible for young people to ignore. Take the Nairamarley case for example. He did a video which passed a wrong message and though he got in trouble for it, the message has been passed. Think about YBNL. What exactly does Yahoo Boys No Laptop mean? Have you ever wondered how an unknown artiste would sing one song with zero lyrical content which we can download for free online and next, he is going on a world tour and buying houses on Banana Island? This is why there is a huge influx into the music industry which sadly produces music/songs with meaningless lyrical content compared to what we had between the 60s and 80s.

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Finally, our moral values have taken a negative hit. Gone are the days where people, our religious leaders, elders, even parents, etc. question the sudden source of wealth as long as they get their ‘cut.’ The child who supports the family or community more is listened to and worshipped, source of wealth notwithstanding. This should not be. We really need to retrace our steps.

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The fact is, there is dignity in labour and anyone who makes money the legit way would never be frivolous or extravagant with their spending. I had a chat with a Taxify guy, Ifeanyi who basically depicts a Naija ‘hustler.’ He started by selling recharge cards with a capital base of N5,000. He moved to phone accessories, used phones and on. He knew his potential hence he kept pushing. We have the likes of Oladimeji Oladele who built himself and his brand from scratch when no one believed in him. There is Taofeek Abijako whose creativity got him international recognition. Yes, there are no jobs but we are Africans, specifically, Nigerians. We are hardworking people who have the ‘never say die’ spirit and can make things happen the legit way, only if we want it.

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