He is Indian not Nigerian



At the height of the Kargil Conflict, this young Indian asked how he could register for the army.


He was lame in both legs. Asked how he was going to be useful.


He humbled everybody with his dignified comment, “I have come to fight the enemy, not to run away from him.”


Chaos reigned in the United Kingdom, where the prime minister’s residence in London – 10 Downing Street – prepared for the entry of Rishi Sunak, one of the richest men in the country. Liz Truss was in office for a mere 45 days, convulsed as her government was by a cycle of workers’ strikes and the mediocrity of her policies. In her mini budget, which doomed her government, Truss opted for a full-scale neoliberal assault on the British public with both tax cuts and unacknowledged cuts to social benefits.


Rishi Sunak is Indian…


My friend sent me this clip, where a black American was blushing all over the place, as she gushed, her words, “as I was dancing in my kitchen to afrobeat, I just thought to myself wow, like Nigerians are just the most amazing people, in that you guys don’t give up on their identity, you don’t give up on your food, on your culture, on whatever, like whatever makes you guys make you… you. It doesn’t matter how long a Nigerian has been out of Nigeria, generally like you guys stay true to who you are, your culture, your food, your music and now literally afrobeat, your music has taken over the world. Everybody is trying to do a collaboration with you guys, like Chris Brown has done collabos with lots of Nigerian people…you guys are just epic…you guys are fantastic, thank you for giving us the best music in the universe, some of the best food in the world…thank you Nigeria!”


I dare say, same can be said of India too, maybe not their music but who says their music isn’t the bomb too, and like India and like Nigeria we both have some of the most corrupt leaders in the world…but their leaders are Indians and ours are just some bunch of people.


However, here is my point picked almost verbatim from Megatrends 2020 - Breaking Old Moulds. Delivered by Dr. Deepak Vohra


He examines how our world (and India) is likely to be by 2030. Understanding changing demographics, economic shifts, educational focus, and national self-esteem.


Dr. Deepak Vohra is a globally renowned Indian diplomat. During his service in the Indian Foreign Service, he has served in France, Tunisia, US, Chad, Cameroon, Papua New Guinea, Spain, Armenia, Sudan & Poland. Dr. Vohra has also worked with Sulabh International and has been a part of UN assignments in Africa. He brings extensive insight and expertise on matters of development in developing countries and an understanding of the political mechanics of Africa. He is an alumnus of St. Stephen's College, St. Columba's School, National Defence College (India) and the University of Paris.


Deepak says on Economic power, four largest economies in the world, purchasing power priority PPP. China, USA, India and Japan. According to the New World Wealth Report, India’s private wealth in 2020 is USD8.2TRN (6th largest in the world) and by 2028 Indians would hold twice as much private wealth as citizens of UK/Germany and we spend it it on eating better, looking better, studying better, communicating better, traveling better, living better.


650 thousand towns and villages in India, and 15 million beauty parlours, communicating better, 1.6 billion mobile connections, for a 1.3 billion population and 1 billion smartphones…


2015 Yoga Resolution co-sponsored by 177/193 UN members: largest in UN history. July 2015 India evacuates nationals of 40 countries from Yemen, the only country allowed to do so.


In 1969 India unanimously invited the founding conference of OIC in Morocco, then uninvited because Pakistan protested vehemently. In March 2019 India was invited as guest of honour…


In Military rebalancing, the most powerful military, USA, Russia, China, India. The result of these tectonic changes is 15% of the world's people from Europe who ruled the other 85% for two centuries losing their privileged lifestyles. Disruption, Depression and loneliness grow in the old world; India is bubbling with self-confidence and new energy.


India is the world youngest with the largest productive age group. 1965-1967 India was starving and begged for food today, the second largest producers of food grains in the world.


Deloitte—Attitude survey 2019 of millennials and Gen Next in 42 countries shows Indians as most optimistic and positive and their top priority is to make an impact on society.


Goldman Sachs—India’s story will be shaped by its 450 million Gen Next (Born after 1995) …sheer size of India’s youth combined with improved education and sustained growth in purchasing power makes India’s story one of the most compelling of the next 20 years.


As an India, there is plenty of cynicism, and fear but there is faith and confidence, they are not afraid because beyond fear lies victory. They are the change they want to see; they are not gods but they are…


For the first time in human history, this convergence is taking place in one country. One quarter of the population in schools/colleges, enthusiastic, tech-savvy. Two-thirds of the population in the productive age group, fastest elimination of poverty ever (I Indian per second). From fatalism and diffidence, within one generation, explosion of self-confidence and self-esteem to determination to chart their future.


Every two seconds one toilet, every second opened two bank accounts, every 15 mins built one kilometer of highway…India (poor and starving) gives USD1 billion to Russia (rich and strong) to develop its far East September 2019.


Swami Vivekanand says the future India must be much greater than ancient India.


They are not Indians because they live in India but because India lives in them.


So, let me end this take, for my beloved Nigeria it is scary that ancient Nigeria now looks so much greater than the future Nigeria. We are not Nigerians because we are born in Nigeria, we are Nigerians because we manage to win soccer games, we are Nigerians because we all want a VISA to migrate anywhere and everywhere. We are Nigerians because we beg everyone to come solve our problems but ourselves.


We are Nigerians because hope has become like an opium, takes and makes you high, after the shot and a while we are back to basics. The reality that our youths are full of cynicism, that all hope is almost lost. That leadership and followership are at her lowest ebb.


We are Nigerians, but does Nigeria live in us, can we from our music, our food, our culture and never say-die attitude build something that we can be proud of, is it possible that soon, I can say I am Nigerian and not Indian—Only time will tell