Sunday, March 7, 2021
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Against the background of our recent experiences especially the FBI harvests of suspected criminals, social and criminal vices and reactions to our citizens in South Africa, it is imperative we engage in introspection. Legal practitioners are wont to say that ignorance is not an excuse. Everyone above age 18 years may not be granted any reprieve or compassion by the courts in the event of being found guilty as charged. In the same vein, suspicion, no matter how strong cannot take the place of legal proof. Most of those vices hanged around the necks of Nigerians in foreign countries need to be checked. In mot cases, they are stereotypes whose provenance may not be justifiable given the fact that horrible similar situations occur in foreign nations and we are simply somehow unlucky because we don’t have powerful media to propagate our own position. VALUES: Our society is built of such non-negotiable values of integrity, honesty and good name. All over the world, Nigerians are setting the pace.  The entire world envies our uniqueness as an entity,  living together despite our ethnic diversity. One single country with over 400 languages! We get labelled as scammers and cheats, and how Nigerians are into drug peddling abroad. It has reached an alarming proportion and a stage where we must show the whole world that Nigerians are positive inclined people, not given to frivolities, and are ever prepared to work very hard anywhere they may find themselves. OUR IMAGE AS ILLEGAL MIGRANTS: Common reasons for visits abroad are for leisure, business, studies, and medical. It is to be noted that travelling abroad first became fashionable in Nigeria immediately following the end of the slave trade era, when people shipped from Africa to foreign lands started coming back to their countries civilized, having imbibed Western cultures and traditions. Several people were lucky to acquire Western education and constituted the elites and intelligentsia in the society. Soon, people started travelling abroad to attend universities in foreign lands. where it was easy to work, and at the same time pay for tuition and acquisition of university education. The nearest university to Nigeria was Fourah-Bay University, Sierra-Leone, to which people trooped. It was not until 1948 that Nigeria’s premier university – The University College, Ibadan, (as it was then known) came into existence as an affiliate of the University College, London.  The struggle to acquire education became very feverish, with…

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