5 Misconceptions about IJGB’s in Nigeria

Disclaimer: Everything said from here on out is all in fun.

1. Your accent is fake or you are just putting it on after crossing Murtala Mohammed Airport one time. Or you went to the airport to drop someone off and came back home with an accent.

I can remember one time during NYSC, for some reason I had to ask a question. I am sure it concerned one of their “do 20 things for a simple procedure” tasks. My friend and I saw an official sitting at his desk and asked him the question. Next thing… “Why are you talking like that?….. Talk normally!”. I was stunned. While my friend was trying to convince him that my accent was authentic, I was standing with an ugly scowl on my face, ready to explode. It’s not even the fact that he thought my accent was fake, I don’t care to be honest. It’s the fact that he thought I felt it necessary to put one on.

2. You don’t have a good upbringing because you were raised abroad.

This annoys me. Being raised in Nigeria doesn’t mean one was raised better than anyone who wasn’t. I am sure there are people raised abroad that act better than some raised in Nigeria and some raised in Nigeria that comport themselves better than some raised abroad. It works both ways but some people refuse to hear it. I would like to think I was brought up well.

During NYSC, I was at work, debating with a colleague. All of a sudden it turned into a mini war. It was all his fault. I know I had no hand in it.

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In all honesty, I am sure I was the one in the right in that particular situation, he just didn’t want to agree. So we were arguing. When I argue with people, I lose steam almost immediately, so it ends up with me talking with a reduced voice while the other person insists that screaming means they are getting their point across and they are winning. Unless the argument is through a messaging app. I can keep the argument going for long.

From nowhere, mid arguing, he snaps, “Blah blah blah…. You people that come from abroad don’t have home training…” I had to pause.

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Let’s just say I got back my steam and won the argument.

3. Foreign degree + accent = JOB!!!

I laugh in Igbo. It doesn’t. It really doesn’t. And it shouldn’t. I just found it interesting how people would say to me “I’m sure you will get a very very good job. If I was an employer and I heard your accent, I would hire you on the spot.” The real world doesn’t work like that and I never thought it did. It was funny that people actually thought that. Or they would do a roll call of my educational history and assume a job would fall onto my lap with ease. That didn’t happen either.

What I found is unless you know someone who knows someone who worked with someone that is friends with someone that is a brother to someone who went to school with someone who knows someone whose sister is married to someone who owns a company or you got straight A’s since you were in your mother’s womb, it will take a bit longer to get the job you actually want.

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4. You are rich.

I don’t even have to say anything.

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5. You know everywhere in London

“Do you know so and so place?”

“Have you been to so and so place?”

”I have been to so and so place. Do you know it? It’s near so and so place?”

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Chances are anyone who has travelled to the UK, even if it is just for the duration of uni, knows more places than I do. The only way I will know where a place is if I have had to go there for some reason or the other. I didn’t know the area where my uni was existed until I started going there. I didn’t even know how to navigate the London Underground map until uni.

I am sure there are a million misconceptions about IJGBs out there. Feel free to add if you’ve got more or you could talk about the misconceptions IJGBs have about Nigerians.

Until next time.

NaijaBrit88.

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