Define the Nigerian Dream: The Usual Suspects Served in Five Music Related Answers

That's a Bugatti

Assume for a moment that you are sitting for an exam (WAEC/SSCE/JSCE/JAMB) or test (not a driving test sha), and the first question that is jeje-ly printed on the paper in front of you is this:

Define the Nigerian Dream

Please note that if you turn the paper to the other side, hoping that maybe it is a multiple choice question and the teacher mistakenly printed options A - D on the back, then you need to be flogged.

*in a teacher's voice, trying to sound important* "This is an essay question and you have fifteen minutes.  Start!"

Okay, so we are not really in class.  You can wipe that cold sweat off your forehead now.  *grins*

If you listen to enough Nigerian songs, you would have heard bits and pieces of the answer to our question.  Flashy cars, expensive houses, spending foreign currency, or occasionally, plenty naira have become fully integrated into songs as lyrics, rendered in English, pidgin or some of our native languages.  

Gospel artistes usually do the same thing secular artistes do, except that they usually (not always) add the words "Papa God don bless me with __________" (fill in the gap).

What we put in that blank space is the answer to our question.

So, here are my own answers.  I call them the usual suspects because they are popular responses to this question.  Feel free to add your own answers in the comments.  This is clearly not an exhaustive list.

Ready? Set? Go!

1. Expensive Cars (Preferably Sports Cars 
and SUVs not Sedans)

Interior of a Bugatti.  I had no idea what a Bugatti was
until I heard it in more than one song. I wonder if it flies too,
like a Bat mobile.  Will we ever know?
There are not many songs where the musician brags about having a Toyota Camry or Peugeot.  Nope.  Only exotic and very expensive cars are allowed.  For some reason, Nigerians also have an aversion for sedans.  SUVs get all the love, right next to sports cars.

2. Sprawling Mansion in an Exclusive Part of Town 
(or your Village)

I am sure there are houses like this in Nigeria, but this one isn't.

God forbid that you park your expensive car under Ojuelegba bridge.  It's not your portion o!  So, the logical place to park that car is in your mansion.  If you live in a city, hopefully, you can have more than one mansion.  By necessity, one of those mansions must be in the town or village where you come from.

3. Travel to any country 
in the world without visa troubles 
(Multiple Passports and Private Jets are welcome)


Even if all you're going there to do is go on a shopping spree, this is an essential part of the Nigerian dream:  you must possess the ability to travel to any part of the world, without going through visa wahala, at the drop of a hat.  That's where multiple passports come in.  Or at least having connections in embassies to get visas without breaking a sweat.  Anyway, I think you get the picture.

Oh, I almost forgot.  Private jets are right up there with Bugattis.

4.  Kids Attend (and Graduate from) the Best Schools in the World, or at least, in the Country

They look so happy!  Except for the guy in the top right corner.  I like the blazers sha.  Maybe he didn't.
Boy No. 3 from the right (top row) came ready for a GQ photo shoot.
Don't worry ehn.  Your time will come.

Okay, I have not heard this one mentioned in a song, but it is inferred.  I mean, you can't be jetting all over the world while your kids attend a no-name public school where they teach them to spell "Man" as "Ogbeni," right?

No.  Private schools are the way to go so the kids can speak that crisp "fone" English.  Or if you can afford it, send them to private schools abroad, so they can legitimately acquire that funny accent straight from the source.

5. Plenty Money, especially in Foreign Currencies

Does anybody still use the 5 naira note?

I would say Nigerian musicians have written more songs about having plenty pounds and dollars in the bank than Naira.  Our devalued currency along with serious inflation has not helped matters.  

Maybe this should have been Number one sha.  After all, you need money to make numbers 1 - 4 happen. N'est pas?

Okay, I'm done.  Now, it's your turn.  What do you think needs to be on that list?  How would you define the Nigerian dream.  Let's hear it.

P.S I left out Bingo/Fido from the list.  I don't think Nigerians generally care about owning pets.  It's not a deal breaker, as far as I know.  Certainly not cats sha. 

Image Sources: 1a. 1b. 2. 3. 4. 5.

This is quite true... But hey, everyone wants a good life. ;)

Ibimina: Yes, everyone wants a good life. Nothing wrong with that.


I would love to hear your thoughts. Please Share.

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