“There is a law that man should love his neighbour as himself. In a few hundred years, it should be as natural to mankind as breathing or the upright gait; but if he does not learn it he must perish” Alfred Adler
Growing up as a child, I had the feeling that student’s don’t die. I thought that once you are a student, you are immune from the stinging hands of death. Then, one of t student died. She isn’t just a student, she was the Senior female prefect (head girl). The event of her passing away literally dragged me from my world of illusion to the world of reality. I came to understand that, there are things that cannot be changed. We just have to learn to live with them.
This is the case with Nigeria. Nigeria is a place where the world literally converged. A place where differences abound. These differences will never ever change and there is absolutely nothing anyone can do about it. We just have to learn to live with it.
There will always be over 200 languages in Nigeria. There will always be Muslims, Christians, Animist, Atheist, Pegans, etc. There will always be North and South. Hausa will never cease to exist neither will Igbo become non-existent nor Yoruba be completely forgotten. At least not in the next 3 to 4 generations. So why the squabbles?
In the business world, the first advise or question will have to be about “How can one turn weaknesses to strength”, after knowing your background, that is. Why don’t we learn from this and turn our “disadvantage(s)” to advantage(s) ?
Look around and you’ll see the manifestations of diversity in almost every aspect of our national life. But bigotry and hatred wouldn’t allow us harness and utilize it. As a country, we have not fully utilized the advantages of diversity to our benefit. “It is our inability to utilize diversity effectively that heralded the various diversity oriented crises in Nigeria”. It shouldn’t be that way.
View these diversity am talking about from the vantage point of fruit juice or a smoothy. Each of the fruit is sweet and refreshing on its own. But when blended together, they give a sweet sensation that makes one ask for more. We as a nation, can blend our differences to yield positive outcomes for us.
The political acumen of an average Northerner supported with the technological and entrepreneurial capabilities of an average South-easterner put into perspective by the educational abilities of an average South-westerner garnished by various abilities of other smaller groups, is not a curse but blessings to Nigeria.
Don’t quote me wrongly, there are fine politicians from the East, superb entrepreneurs from the north and intelligent people from all over Nigeria. The example above is not to allocate to various positions to different groups. But to put into perspective how our diversity can be well utilized.
Common, Nigeria can work if we want it to work. This I believe and will remain hopeful. The call, however, is for all of us.