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keep walking Nigeria!

keep walking Nigeria!
keep walking Nigeria!
Lagos, the city of 22 million people is adjusting to new economic conditions. Times are tough for most people who have to face the ever increasing inflation with their salary that has not been adjusted. The naira, that has depreciated by at least 70% against hard currencies, makes imported products much more expensive and sometimes missing from shop's shelves. Of course products 100% locally produced are not directly affected. Last but not least fuel prices went up earlier this year  in an attempt to cut subsidies, since then road has thinned considerably, more people "trek" (walk) hence the cynicism of Johnny Walker's advert (see above) discreetly plastered on a large building wall so that no-one can possibly miss it.
Champagne is still there for VIPs
Champagne is still there
"Champagne has become a luxury" declared recently the organiser of the Lights Camera Africa!!! Film Festival to acknowledge the sponsor who had managed to provide some for the VIP pre-launch night. Now, the mood is by necessity tuned to "cheap is beautiful". This could be seen by the way the opening movie, Green White Green (after the colours of the flag of Nigeria) had been crafted telling the story of 4 teenagers, from the 3 main tribes of Nigeria, who decide to shoot a movie about the history of their country with very basic means, but enough to make their parents proud of their children and reflecting on the beauty to being one united country (tribalism is still rife in Nigeria, a good example is the way people voted at State level for the last presidential election with scores above 70% or 80% for the party of the candidate belonging to the tribe of the particular State).
talent beware, you are being hunted
talent beware, you are being hunted
However despite hard times there are still business opportunities, especially then when most businesses are under stress. And some hopeful Nigerians do even go as far as scouting for talents on the city walls!
Independence Day, the 1st of October, was celebrated with the utmost discretion. Well let's be fair, the Federal Government probably has better ways to spend its budget than by organising street parties  but nonetheless even something simple could have contributed to the sense of belonging to ONE country.
Talking to the owner of the largest collection of Nigerian art, Omooba Yemisi Shyllon, a Yoruba, I was asking if his foundation, OYASAF, had a particular focus in building his collection. He replied that its goal was rather encyclopedic, to collect art from all parts of Nigeria and let visitors (he plans to open a Museum in 2018 in Lekki to host a part of his extensive collection) decide by themselves.
The future is not quite bright yet but Nigerians have the ability to endure and overcome tough times. Family, religion, various networks are tools to fend off those difficult periods: as long as there is hope you can be kept alive. My driver was one day equating seniority of a person to the degree of "sufferment" of that person. So people might be on a forced course to become more senior right now!
hope is there
hope is there


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