I tell you this man is a Nobel Laurette, you see him everyday you just don’t recognize him, maybe he’s being too humble or you are being too proud, i know you see him everyday but like i said you don’t recognize him.
He wakes up every morning to the sound of the news. He struggles to get out to the street to serve his motherland.
He works in one of the many dilapidated government buildings scattered around the metropolis most times carrying out one clerical job or another. He remembers the days his job had a lot of glory attached to it, and feels sad that those days are now gone.
When he is late to work and has you waiting for almost an hour before he shows up i apologize on his behalf, it must have been the traffic.
It is three p.m and trust me with all he has seen today he wants to be on his way home, home to a different kind of trouble, for he is tired of this one already.
Most times he wants to work but he has little or no supplies, he works for the government but he has to procure most of the instruments he serves you with for his pocket, as if the poor pocket didn’t have enough holes already.
You see him in the afternoon in the hot sun trying to make his way home. You greet him and he does not answer, don’t be offended, he has plenty of calculations going on up there, first there are those he seeks to avoid, then those he can’t avoid so has to make up stories for them, then those that are avoiding him and how he wants to catch them, then a summation of how much debt he owes taken from how much he’d earn in the coming week, divided by the number of days in that month for which he has to make contribution or ajo.
Next time you go in search of him and he is not on duty don’t be offended he has gone to sell aso ebi or recharge card, give him a few minutes he’d be back. And if you have to wait for more than an hour just know he’s having a bad day, don’t get angry instead pray to God for him that his debtors be nice and pay up. Then you’d see him return with smiles beaming all over his face and trust me he’d do whatever he can to help you.
When he finally returns and he is in a foul mood, don’t blame him, his problems are obviously mightier than your prayers, next time just pray harder.
He works so much and earns far little. He works for years with almost no promotion. He has outdated tools to work with even in the face of poor power supply. You see where his motivation comes from.
Believe me he has problems of his own, a wife and children to take care of, relatives that look up to him and friend that depend on him, he is fighting quite a battle.
Even in the face of all these this man has kept his cool, he never raised a finger to hurt anyone, sure he raised his voice once or twice, yelled at a number of people, cursed when things got out of hand, but you’d never see him vandalize property or mutilate someone, you’d never see him throw chairs at his colleague like some people i know.
Little wonder i call him a Nobel prize winner, he’s the Nigerian civil servant, the Nobel prize winner for peace.
Next time you see him don’t forget to say “hi”. If you can invite him for dinner get him a cold drink and a nice meal, let him unload the content of his heart. Trust me he’d thank you, more than you’d imagine.