Home Latest The Nigerian Attitude to Tragedy

The Nigerian Attitude to Tragedy


Nigerians are a largely optimistic people, we have ingrained in us, the mindset that ‘nothing will go wrong’. While it isn’t a bad thing being idealistic, it is indeed naive, to deny the possibility that adversity may occur. This mindset with regards tragedy is a reason we are not proactive as a people, in how we tackle problems.

Sadly, this unpreparedness isn’t just restricted to how we handle personal tragedies, it has transformed into a way of life. This attitude is deeply ingrained in us as a people that an attempt to make a Nigerian aware of a likely calamity, translates to fighting a diabolic enemy in a religious warfare.

We see the Nigerian attitude to tragedy, all around us, it is the failure to have life or property insured against death, damage or theft. This translates into a family patriarch, dying without a will, thereby throwing his family into chaos.

We see the entrepreneur dive blindly into a venture, unprepared for business hazards or citizens undertake the risk of investing their life savings into ponzi schemes. We see this manifest in situations where people carelessly get married, without properly vetting their partners.

This is also why we are ill prepared for an epidermic, but rely on blind luck to deliver us, if the Ebola, Lassa fever and Cholera outbreaks are any indication. This informs the plight of the internally displaced people in Northern Nigeria.

We would rather bury our heads in optimism, than confront the reality that bad things actually happen. Being prepared doesn’t negate our optimism as a people, rather it makes us stronger to stand firm in the eye of the storm.

This mindset has to change and we must cast aside our naïve idealism, to acknowledge that tragedy is an inevitable eventuality.


Facebook Comments



  1. Truth is most times, Nigerians are filled with pessimism than optimism, at least from my part of the world and this pessimism eats deep into them like a cankerworm of negativity that one has to cling to any viable iota of optimism for sanity sakes.

    So yes, when there is a reason to forgo the need to prepare for unforseen events, most Nigerians want to take the chance not because peril is nonexistent but because one needs to take a break from all of the negativity that’s circumnavigating the subconscious alone just so the conscious can find a safe haven.

    When there is the need to surge on, to keep hopes alive, when one needs to learn a new skill rather than insure his life, when one needs to invest in a business for his future rather than find faults in his spouse to be, then burying one’s head in the pool of optimism compared to preparing for a devastating unforseen event is the best of both evils. As long as it is done with utmost care. Cheers.

  2. Its all about exposure and wisdom we had decades of decadence and poor administration aided and abetted by the masses, here we are, what is the solution? Simple we must first focus on repeat building our moral and educational systems


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.