“Growing up in Jos I had this Ethiopian neighbor. She didn’t want her children to play or relate with us. I don’t know what happened to her or the Nigerian she encountered that gave her a bad image of us.
It seemed to me that the sight of us irritated her, from the way she behaved. Her kids still played with us; they liked us, and didn’t care what their mom thought of us. We were children and we loved playing games like PS or card games, you know. We still played with her kids when she goes to work. When she returns from work, we’d be running helta-skelta and running through the back door so she doesn’t catch us and scold or beat her kids.
Fast forward to some years later, after graduating I came back to Jos from Kaduna. To our greatest surprise, this woman’s attitude towards us completely changed. She would then even invite us to her house. I don’t know what changed her mind, maybe she thought we would amount to much, or be graduates like her kids. I really believe that it was a life lesson for her, and even for me too in some way.
As Africans, when we travel out of the continent we complain of encountering racism, but then we come back to Africa, we’d still find that we’re still doing the same to ourselves. So why is it like that? It really pains me a lot to really experience that. I am happy for that Ethiopian lady, that she came to realize her wrongs.”