Uganda Bloggers 7 Day Challenge: Day 2- Osmosis; An English tale of woe
When Lux was still in the UK, she made an acquaintance with a Nigerian who works as a security guard at her best friend’s Art School. Oga happened to have a degree in Engineering but this did not help him at all in the UK because the degree was non transferable.
Oga’s family made many sacrifices in order to raise the money for him to go to the UK so that he could make a better life for himself and hopefully all of them eventually. They believed his degree; prodigious within Nigeria and based around an English curriculum established during colonial times would hold water in the UK. This belief was founded on the fact that the two countries shared histories and their own personal feeling of cultural assimilation with the former colonizer. However they were grievously mistaken, imagine, colonial history is not even taught in the UK so this was a lost cause from the get go, many of his English contemporaries are not even aware that Nigeria is an ex-colony.
As a result, Oga was naïve about what was needed to move further or at least forward. Saying their plan went South is an understatement because being a security guard in that particular part of the UK is a moot point since there are no security hazards so he has pretty much been useless for the past 10 years that he has had the job. WOW! 10 years? I can NOT begin to imagine doing anything for 10 years.
He has visited his parents in Nigeria only twice in the 10 years that he has been in the UK and even when he did, he did not live with them. Oga’s pride would not let him show his people how badly his life had turned out because while he was away playing askari his age mates, school mates, class mates, you name it were doing well in Nigeria, better than he was anyway. The irony is that those who stuck with the less developed country had made it further than he had. For this reason and probably many more, he stayed in fancy hotels whenever he visited so that he could put the point that he was doing great across. This was accompanied by ridiculous spending in all the coolest hang out places obviously having him spend way more than he could afford only to go back to the UK to struggle on, and don’t be fooled Lagos is very expensive.
This can be used as an example of African parenting gone wrong. Oga’s parents put so much emphasis on him pursuing the aspirations they held for him, that he now can’t confront their disappointment and carries on living a life of regret, at least he lives it away from their watchful gaze.
One might think that that is the worst that happened to Oga and one would definitely be wrong on that account. Along with the dreams that he went with to the UK, Oga had in his imagination a picture of the UK as the home of the great world religions and moral propriety only to become disillusioned by how immoral and secular it was. Once a Muslim, Oga slowly and depressingly abandoned Islam over the years and decided to explore Nigerian animisms; he went on to actively practice.
Hmmm. That's a sad tale. But do the parents really have to blame?
In this particular case, they sadly are.
Doesn't apply everywhere of course.