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How ordinary Nigerians can travel like President Buhari

Editor’s note: President Muhammadu Buhari has been facing criticisms from Nigerians for travelling around the world despite settling down in Nigeria.

Elnathan John gives advices to ordinary Nigerians on how to travel without stress through Africa with a green Nigerian passport.

Buhari all white departs Abuja

Please, if you also have a red or blue passport, this article is not for you. You can take a stroll now if you like. I am speaking to people like me, without a lifeline, whose only means of identification in this world is that green passport that reads Federal Republic of Nigeria and who have no special “connections”. Ordinary people who want to travel with ease around Africa.

Dear Nigerian, make no mistake about it: nobody in Africa is waiting for you at their border with open arms to say welcome, make yourself at home. It is easier to find your way to and through Europe (sometimes even America, yes!) than to travel through Africa. Travelling through Africa is like making heaven. On your way there will be a lot of obstacles, temptations, sins, and frustrations. I am here, not to insult the countries who make life hard for us, but to  help you find a way. God will judge those countries at an appropriate time. In this world you have to find solutions. As a frequent traveller I provide this advice free of charge.

1. Find the corrupt link

No matter how much they spit at us, they are in fact like us. Often we hate the people we most resemble. As we are full of corruption, so are they. There will be that one hustler in their embassy that connives with the Nigerian interface who does the deals on the outside. Don’t be like me. Pay and pass through the gates of African heaven. I remember sitting in a visa office trying to get a South African visa.

READ ALSO: World’s most powerful passports: Nigeria improves position

One of the Nigerians who worked security there whispered to me, that for a small fee she could make my life easier. “They will suffer you and you may not get it,” she told me. I declined her offer and told her I would rather follow the official route, confident that my application was strong enough not to need any “help”. Long story short, I did not get the South African visa, and I missed the trip. I could hear the spirit of that woman laughing at me for many months after that. Find the corrupt link. They are like us.

2. Marry wisely

Now, for this one I am sorry if you are already married. I do not advise anyone to end their marriage to a Nigerian. So if you are stuck in a marriage to a Nigerian, just skip this part. Marrying wisely can mean the difference between a life time of disrespect or easy access to the world, especially Africa. It is no secret that people with the nice passports of the world – US, UK, Canada, Germany, France – find it easier to travel through Africa than Africans themselves. This is how we are. We are kind. We love visitors. Marrying well can convert you from an African to a visitor. It can convert you from a leprous carrier of a filthy green passport to a desirable human being with rights. Find yourself a nice foreigner and swallow your pride and say I do. In a few years, like a sexually transmitted disease, that passport will be passed on to you and you will forget what it feels like to be denied entry by another African country. But you have to be smart. Research the country before falling in love. Some countries with strong passports do not make it easy for spouses to pass on citizenship.  Be wise. You don’t want to be stuck with a foreign spouse and no passport. That would be a tragedy.

3. Run errands for a foreigner with a strong passport

Another thing: Africans respect the workers and messengers of foreigners. So if you work for say, the British, they will, for fear of offending the British, treat you like they would treat the British. So if you can’t marry well or find the corrupt link, look for a job with the Americans, the British or the Germans. Once they see that connection, you are good to go. You will travel Africa on the back of your foreign oga and you will forget how it feels to be the owner of a green passport. Don’t be stupid and lose that job. Be loyal to your foreign boss and continue receiving the blessings of their strong passport.

READ ALSO: Nigerian Passport Is One Of Most Powerful In Africa

So, now, these three remain the rules for easy African travel: the corrupt link, marrying wisely and working for a foreigner. Bur the greatest of these is marrying wisely. It is the most secure. The most permanent. With it, you can hope all things, believe all things. Marrying wisely never fails. But whether there a corrupt links, they will cease; whether there are foreign employers, they too will pass away, but when that foreign passport comes, that which is temporary disappears. An article is enough for the wise.

Elnathan John

Elnathan is a writer and lawyer living in Nigeria. 

His works have appeared in Hazlitt, Per Contra, Evergreen Review, FT and the Caine Prize for African Writing anthology 2013, 2014 and 2015. He writes weekly political satire for the Nigerian newspaper Daily Trust on Sunday.

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The post How ordinary Nigerians can travel like President Buhari appeared first on Nigeria News today & Breaking news | Read on NAIJ.COM.

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