It is now stale news that the Corona-Virus Pandemic worsened further the already battered Nigerian economy. A lot of Nigerians constantly wonder how they would cope in these trying times. Bills mount, cost of food-stuffs, house rent, electricity, water, transport fare and school fees have all flown to the high heavens. But one thing is in halves. Salary!
The salaries of most Nigerian workers have been slashed since the beginning of this unfortunate pandemic. You can imagine a private school teacher who was once earning #50,000 now earning #25,000, another, whose basic salary was #46,000, now earns #23,000.
These are indeed trying times. Yet, Nigerian politicians are busy embezzling funds, robbing the poor to enrich themselves. NCDC and EFCC made us see how accountable they are during the lockdown.
How many Nigerians can comfortably pay their house rents, children’s school fees and eat three square meals a day? When was the last time you went to the market to shop for food stuffs? A tin of tomato now costs #500, as against #300, a sachet of Tasty Tom Mix costs #150 at the moment, while a loaf of bread costs #400- #350. We are indeed in trying times. Sadly too, the unhealthy economy has left so many Nigerians developing hypertension. Most organizations, despite paying 50 percent or 70 percent of salaries , expect their staff to put in 200 percent service into their work, thereby, draining life out of their employees and depriving them of living their own personal lives; all in the name of working for someone or an organization. The end result is that the poor employee is frustrated and stressed out. The other day, news had it that a family friend, slumped and died in the bathroom while having his bath. Apparently, he was going through acute stress.
So what is the way forward? Do we drool like a withering plant or allow yourselves to be depressed? No! We, as Nigerians need to be strong and breakthrough-minded, my solidarity goes to all the youths protesting against the horrid extra-judicial killings, that have been the order of the day in Nigeria by the police. Nigerians deserve better, we are human beings and not insects like flies or mosquitoes that can be squashed at an instance. I want to encourage Nigerians to pray at all times not only in the face of crisis or inflation but at all times. The Federal Government should do the needful and take into cognizance, the needs of its citizens. Employers should stop treating their employees like slaves, enjoying cheap labour and sucking the lives of its employees. My dear employee, isn’t it time you became your own boss? Do not be afraid to leap, crawl, walk and then run to your destiny. Start something now, now, let it be a side-hustle, put in all your best into it and watch it blossom. See you at the top.
JANE IKEGULU is an online educator of English and Literature as well as a voice- over artiste.
08034786925, [email protected]