There is one comment I heard in a place that I went to speak 3 weeks ago that has not left my mind. When I finished speaking, a professor of the university was implored to give awards to the speakers. When he got to my turn to recieve my award, the Prof spoke for about 10 minutes. He said a lot of things about the quality of my presentation, he spoke so passionately so much so that at a point he switched over to Yoruba language. There was one thing however that he said. He said “Ah, If you were a white man and you did what you today, the world will fall in love with you (won a gba ti e), ah but you are a black man! because you are a black man you may need to struggle a bit more, but you will make it, I am happy you are a Nigerian and I am proud that you schooled in Nigeria”. He said a lot more than these…but that line about the black man has been a topic for ponder in my mind.
Some days back I wrote an article saying that we forget. The world might have forgotten the principles that moved them from 3rd world to 1st world, while they might no longer remember the equations that took them from developing to developed, Africa however is in the heat of it’s development and is at the point where you must listen to her. The spotlight is on Africa today, tomorrow’s African leaders have big visions ahead of them and their bloods are steaming with passion. They (we) are in the center of our pains and at a time when the quality of our presentations cannot be at par with when we get satisfied.
I remember a training I went to in Poland some years back, in this training there were nationals from over 50 different countries. We all interacted together in an intensive programme for 5 days. After 5 days we signed autographs for each other and shared feedback about each other. The consistent feedback I received from co participants and facilitators was about my Passion! They were all amazed at the energy and passion with which I spoke and carried myself. One particular facilitator described me as very charismatic. Listen, it is time for the Black Man. Right from within our messes are strong messages, in the middle of our pain is our potential for gain. Our position as 3rd is not a disadvantage it just means that we have an opportunity to learn from the 1st.
The solutions developed for the western world will not work as cut and paste in Nigeria! No! You will need to leverage on the knowledge, but the least you will do is edit. Some of the strongest voices in the world today are in Africa. They are pregnant men and women, their reality is far from their dreams. When they speak to you, it’s out of the depth of what they need to tell themselves daily to move on. In a few more years, they would have get the satisfaction that only now is a dream. Then, had they not documented the travails of their heart would find it difficult to instruct the next generation.
Are you black and discouraged? Are you in a third world country? Don’t give up, it’s time to listen to you. It’s time to do case studies on your success, it’s time to hear your story.