Interview: ‘Japa mentality of Nigerians is embarrassing’ – Wale Ojo

Wale Ojo
The current state of Nigeria: bad government, economic crisis, unemployment, bad roads among the endless list has continued to contribute to the syndrome luring young Nigerians to seek greener pastures in western countries. 

Nigerians have proven to find all means to be happy irrespective of the situation facing them termed the need to seek for greener pastures as ‘Japa’.

The slang Japa simply means escaping, fleeing, or disappearing quickly from a situation.

While some Nigerians have shared their success story of relocation on social media, others have stated otherwise.

Consequently, UK born Nigerian actor, Wale Ojo is on the side of the latter.

According to Wale Ojo, his dream is for Nigerians to lose interest in traveling relocating to western countries.

In an interview with ThisDay, the actor highlighted his goals for Nigeria, adding that despite spending many years overseas, his love for the country has never faltered.

The ‘Breath of Life’  avowed that his passion for Nigeria has never fluctuated and that he has always chosen to return to his Nigeria, despite having opportunities to thrive in other countries.

Without mincing words, Wale described the japa mentality as “embarrassing” and “unfortunate.”

He believes Nigeria has immense potential and that its citizens should strive to build a better future at home. He urges the government to engage with the creative industry, which he sees as essential to shaping the country’s future.

“I have a lot of aspirations. Over the years it would have been extremely easy for me not to come to Nigeria at all. I could easily have stayed in the United States, or United Kingdom, or Germany or even Russia. And I know I would have been okay doing what I do there. But I love Nigeria, and I will always love Nigeria no matter what.”

“And I have a lot of visions for Nigeria. And that vision is one that encompasses a country where everybody doesn’t want to ‘japa’. The ‘japa’ mentality I think is embarrassing. I think it’s unfortunate, you know where doctors think they go and do their stuff elsewhere and whereas when I go to the United States or go anywhere, Nigerians are applauded for their ingenuity.”

“When you will come home there are many problems, I want to be a part of the solution; I don’t want to be talking about the problem I want to be a part of the solution. I put a lot of things in place to bear the solution if the government wants to engage with the creative industry they need to come and talk to people like us because we have a vision for the country; we don’t do ‘follow-follow.’”

Interview: This Day Newspaper

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