18. Patriot Alert 13: The Concept Of African Time – A National Embarrassment

An Embarrassment is the shame a person feels when their inadequacy or guilt is made public. On a national scale, the concept of African time is a national embarrassment of grievous proportions on our noble nation Nigeria. It is a concept brought to bear by the collective decision of a majority of our citizens to be neither sincere nor accountable for their statements most of the time.

It is a concept with the mutual understanding that simply means ‘we all know we are not going to keep to the schedule of this task’.

Most of us seem quick to forget the reason behind keeping to the agreed schedule of the designated task. If it is an appointment scheduled by 12 noon as an instance, you will definitely not see anyone at the venue at the scheduled time. Everyone will deliberately choose to make a casual arrival at varying intervals of lateness. This is the height of frivolity among adults endowed with sound reasoning abilities.

This strange character of immaturity bears several frustrating twists with negative consequences of under achievement in any group endeavor. This fact is very clear in the Courts of Common Opinion therefore we ought to know better. In addition, it completely defeats the essence of the invention of individual time keeping instruments aka watches, clocks, calendars, etc.

The invention and application of time keeping instruments is designed to enable everyone synchronize to any schedule of appointment. It also means that a scheduled arrangement which has been planned in theory can be realized in practice within the time-line scheduled for it.

Our attitude always guarantees that any series of dependent schedules which forms a part of a whole project can never be achieved as planned right from the blast of the starting whistle since no one is ready to keep to time. From the start, the outcome of the task hangs on the uncertain balance of a mediocre attitude we proudly refer to as African time.

Another unfortunate and heart rending reality of this strange decision by a majority of Nigerians to simply be tragically funny is that the younger generation are learning this art from us right from birth; so much so that it has become second nature in their lives.

It is incredibly amazing and sad to often see a group of esteemed Nigerian citizens presiding a meeting which might run into marathon hours; engage themselves through the pains of documenting such meetings; only to deliberately throw each other into a planless state of chaos for the sake of ‘African time’. I often ponder the name ‘African time’ because this behavior seems to be mostly peculiar with the Nigerian nation so we might as well tag it ‘Nigerian time’.

We should not feign ignorance on the reason our index of achievements is very low considering the resources we have collectively expended on various projects in Nigeria through the years. This grave attribute of hypocrisy has taught our subconscious minds that the efficacy of the meaning of words no longer matters.

Little wonder the profoundly rich words of the National pledge has no consequence in our daily lives. Little wonder the melodious call of the National anthem has consistently fallen on deaf ears. Little wonder the words of our prayers carry no meanings with our actions. Little wonder it is becoming more difficult to find a Nigerian who can pledge accountability for their statements. Little wonder we have almost become the most unserious nation on the planet.

The notorious concept of ‘African time’ has evolved into a national embarrassment and must be unlearned by every single Citizen of this country as a matter of great priority. The plain truth is that there is no Nation on this planet where development can survive on such a terrain of hypocrisy and planlessness. This is one of the monsters which has retarded national development with our country in a very subtle manner. Until we choose a collective will to act on changing our current narrative of ‘African time’, the future of our dream Nigerian nation remains very bleak.

Arise O Compatriots….

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