Lend a Helping Hand

Nigeria's social platforms recently got bombarded with a plea to help an ailing acting and broadcasting veteran, Sadiq Abubakar Daba. When I began seeing the various messages on Twitter, Facebook, news paper sites, and even WhatsApp, I began to wonder if it was true.
I spent a while checking it out and realized, yes, the details are accurate (so far o).

The need: 20 million naira
The concept: 20, 000 people send N1,000 to Mr. Daba's account. This would raise the money faster than waiting for some politicians and rich people to get in touch with the 'angel in their hearts' and spare some money for him.
Details: Send N1,000 to UBA account for Sadiq Abubakar Daba, 1005382276

So far, it seems to be working. As at November 17, 2017, about 1.5 Million naira had been raised and more were still coming in, particularly with the aid of activists like Dr. Joe Odumakin, and Mr. Soni Irabor.



Let us all come together to help this great man. N1,000.00 is not much. The target is still far ahead.
Please lend a helping hand, to this golden age Nigerian actor, famous for his role in "Cock crow at Dawn", and recently, "October 1st".
I have done my bit. Please join me.
UPDATE: The target has been reached for Sadiq Daba! Thank you to all those that heeded the call.
God bless us all. God bless Nigeria

WELCOME TO CASHLESS NIGERIA

I just got an SMS from Vicky, about Mobile Money provided by MTN. As a typical Nigerian, the first point of call on the mobile money site for me was the Tariffs section.

According to the tariff page, to deposit, register, buy airtime, check balance and pay bills is free. To withdraw by an unregistered customer is free as well as the accounts subscription, and SMS traffic generated by transactions.
But after that, the charges start piling up:
Mini Statement = NGN10.
Registered customer's withdrawal of NGN3,000 and less will cost NGN50.
Registered customer's withdrawal of between NGN3,001 and NGN6,000 will cost NGN100.
Registered customer's withdrawal of between NGN6,001 and NGN9,000 will cost NGN150.
Registered customer's withdrawal of above NGN9,000 will cost NGN200.
To send to a Registered customer, it will cost you NGN50.
To send NGN3,000 or less to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN120.
To send between NGN3,001 and NGN6,000 to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN180.
To send between NGN6,001 and NGN9,000 to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN250.
To send above NGN9,000 to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN300.

So the charges are between NGN10 and NGN300.
They seem minimal but if you consider the fact that the Central Bank of Nigeria is steering the country towards a cashless economy, the charges will pile up gradually. As everyone will have to operate without cash, every transaction will cost some money.

But then I got an SMS on my MTN modem that Vicky had credited the account with NGN8,000 credit. I even got a bonus of NGN400 for the transaction, done via MTN's Virtual Top Up service. And I checked out my etisalat credit balance and realized that he had topped that one up as well.
And I struck upon an idea.

Mobile Money vs Credit Share
Instead of using Mobile Money, why not try using credit as the legal tender?
If I sell groundnut, instead of having to collect cash from you the buyer, you could just transfer the credit to me. Its instantaneous! I get the alert, you get the groundnut immediately!
Same goes for the vegetable seller, and the mallam that sells custom-made indomie down the street.
And yes! Don't forget the suya seller! Its instant.

The credit goes round and round so there is no cause for worries. Of course to get your cash back, you might need to sell the credit to anyone who will buy. This means everyone will be selling credit - kills the retailer business a bit but, it pays in the end, as it is all free and the networks eventually wont need to print recharge cards anymore! Besides, there may be no need to cash out at all. Let me paint a scenario for you:


Akin wakes up in the morning, and strolls to his wardrobe to brush his teeth. He finds his toothpaste tube empty, and grabs his phone as he hurries to Oga Audu, the Mallam at the kiosk three houses away.
"Sanu Oga Audu" he greets the mallam.
"Sanu Oga Akin," Audu responds. "How I fit helep you this morning?"
"I need toothpaste oga" Akin responds. "How much is this one?"
"120 naira oga," Audu replies as he pulls out his phone.
"Ok, abeg give me your number again make I transfer," Akin says as he opens his MTN Services application on his phone.
Seconds later Audu's phone beeps, indicating that he has received an sms. He smiles and hands over the toothpaste to Akin, who thanks him and hurries back home to get ready for work.

Thirty minutes later, Sherifat, Akin's sister is blocking the door, barring Akin from leaving the flat.
"Bro Akin you promised to give me some credit for my handouts today," She mutters. "Please now"
"Sheri, I don't have time for this o!" Akin bellows. "You want me to be late for work ni?"
"No now," Sheri pleads. "Please, oya just promise you will transfer 400 naira to me before noon."
"Will that be okay for your handout?" akin asks.
"It is half," Sheri replies. "Mummy has already transferred the other half last night."
"Smart girl," Akin says as he opens the door. "I promise you will get it before noon okay? Bye bye."
He closes the door on Sheri's doubtful face.
------
"Papa! I don dey go school o!" Young Ahmed shouts as he straightens his worn out socks.
"Bye bye" Oga Audu, his father shouts back to him from his kiosk.
"Papa! No credit for break time today?" Ahmed asks.
"No credit!" his father replies, and watches his face crumble before adding. "I don transfer 50 naira to the akara seller in your school for you."
Ahmed's face lit up at the news. Oga Audu shook his head. sometimes he felt his son went to school only for the food.
"Na go de Papa!" the boy says, before turning around and running to the junction.
------
Akin peeps out of the window of the bus, and glares at the traffic a third time. It was as if Time was determined to make sure he was late today. He gets down from the bus and stands at the side of the street, looking up and down for an okada [commercial motorcycle]. Finally he spots one, signals it to come closer, and within ten minutes, he arrives in front of his office.
Just in time too, with five minutes to spare.
"Oga," Akin addresses the okada rider. "Abeg quick give me your number make I transfer. How much u go charge me sef?"
"50 naira oga." the rider responds. "my number na..." he reels of his number from memory.
Ten seconds later
"Oga thank you. Have a good day" he says as he starts his okada and Akin walks into his office compound smiling as he remembers the days when they would both have to start looking for change and the purpose of taking the bike would be defeated as he would invariably be late.
-------
The okada rider parks his bike in front of the bukateria. He is famished and had been heading there before Akin called him.
"Mama Kike good morning o!" he calls out as he takes a seat where he can keep his eye on his okada.
"Good morning Oga Silvanus!" Mama Kike, the food seller responds. "How your night? Wetin you wan chop today?"
"We thank God o. Bring rice and beans, and dodo and four meat." Silvanus responds.
"Wetin you wan drink?" Mama Kike asks as she sets the food in front of him.
"Bring coke madam," he grunts as he digs into the food.
Twenty minutes later she goes to him as he pushes his empty plate and coke bottle forward and begins picking his teeth.
"Mama Kike how much be my money o," he says around the toothpick in his mouth.
"Meat na 200, rice na 100, beans na 50 naira, and the coke na 20 naira." she responds. "Total na 370 naira oga."
As she greets a newcomer, Silvanus sends the credit to her phone.
"My phone number na..." she says to him, as her phone begins to beep.
"I don save you number Madam," Silvanus cuts her short as he rises from his seat. "I don send the credit sef. Na the SMS e go be wey enter your phone just now."
"Yes o!" she responds, "Na im! Oga thank you! Make I dey expect you for evening abi?"
"Yes," Silvanus. "Na akpu I wan chop by then o. No tell me say una no get dis time! Bye bye"
---------
SIX HOURS LATER
"Kike! Kike!" Mama Kike shouts from her cooking spot. Her daughter Kike had just arrived from school and she needed her to buy some things.
"Yes ma!" Kike shouts back as she appears by her mother's side.
"I need fufu o," Mama Kike says in a lower voice. "And Ugu vegetables. Please go into the market close by to buy both."
"Ok ma," Kike responds, swooping down to grab her mother's phone on the stool. "How much?"
"Buy 500 naira fufu and 400 ugu." Mama Kike replies as she continues stirring the soup on the fireplace.
"Ok mummy," Kike responds.
"Don't take long o!" Mama Kike shouts after her.
------
"Mama Sola, you no go close?" Mama Aliu shouts to her neighbor as she carries her garri basin into her tiny shop.
"I don dey close o," Mama Sola replies. "Nah Kike come buy fufu and we never finish to dey count am."
"Abeg do quick and close," Mama Aliu shouts back as she carries her Beans basin in as well. "Nah we remain for market. Everybody don close finish."
"Mama wait!" Sheri shouts as she runs towards Mama Aliu's shop front. "I wan buy garri ma!"
"Why you just dey enter market now?" Mama Aliu grumbles. "I don close o."
"Mama no vex na," Sheri pleads as she rummages in her bag for her phone. "Nah just 600 naira garri I wan buy abeg."
"I don carry am enter o," Mama Aliu insists.
"Abeg ma," Sheri kneels down on the hard ground. "My brother will kill me if I don't buy it today. Please ma"
"Mama Aliu sell am for am now," Mama Sola says as she waits for Kike's transfer delivery to get to her phone, while packing up. "See as how she kneel down so. To find young girl wey go do like that e rare o. She be good gal."
"Ok you get lucky today o!" Mama Aliu says as she turns around and gets her measuring bowls. "Oya start the transfer now now as I dey measure! My number na 08031234567"

Minutes later, they had closed up shop and are on their way home. Sheri is already on an okada to take her home.
---------
"Hmm," Akin grunted as he rubs his tummy in satisfaction. "That was some meal."
Sheri smiles at him in pleasure.
"Your husband will enjoy you well well," Akin adds as he stretches out his feet in front of him.
"Thanks for the compliments," Sheri says as she clears the dishes from the tiny dining table in the one bedroom apartment. "And thanks for transferring the credit in time this afternoon."
"Really?" Akin asks, around the toothpick in his mouth, his eyes still closed. "It was in time?"
"Yes it was," Sheri replies from the tiny kitchen. "I was able to transfer the credit to the Captain and get my copy before the lecturer entered the class. I made your favorite eba and egusi just to say thank you, you know."
"Ah!" Akin exclaims. "If that is what it will take to get my favorite meal, I will start transferring credit to your phone everyday o!"
Sheri and Akin burst out laughing.

---THE END---

Everybody gets paid, without charges as it is free via credit transfer. MTN VTU is ideal for this as almost everybody has[ or has had] an MTN line, but other networks also do credit transfer for free.
What do you think?

WELCOME TO CASHLESS NIGERIA

I just got an SMS from Vicky, about Mobile Money provided by MTN. As a typical Nigerian, the first point of call on the mobile money site for me was the Tariffs section.

According to the tariff page, to deposit, register, buy airtime, check balance and pay bills is free. To withdraw by an unregistered customer is free as well as the accounts subscription, and SMS traffic generated by transactions.
But after that, the charges start piling up:
Mini Statement = NGN10.
Registered customer's withdrawal of NGN3,000 and less will cost NGN50.
Registered customer's withdrawal of between NGN3,001 and NGN6,000 will cost NGN100.
Registered customer's withdrawal of between NGN6,001 and NGN9,000 will cost NGN150.
Registered customer's withdrawal of above NGN9,000 will cost NGN200.
To send to a Registered customer, it will cost you NGN50.
To send NGN3,000 or less to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN120.
To send between NGN3,001 and NGN6,000 to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN180.
To send between NGN6,001 and NGN9,000 to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN250.
To send above NGN9,000 to an unregistered customer will cost you NGN300.

So the charges are between NGN10 and NGN300.
They seem minimal but if you consider the fact that the Central Bank of Nigeria is steering the country towards a cashless economy, the charges will pile up gradually. As everyone will have to operate without cash, every transaction will cost some money.

But then I got an SMS on my MTN modem that Vicky had credited the account with NGN8,000 credit. I even got a bonus of NGN400 for the transaction, done via MTN's Virtual Top Up service. And I checked out my etisalat credit balance and realized that he had topped that one up as well.
And I struck upon an idea.

Mobile Money vs Credit Share
Instead of using Mobile Money, why not try using credit as the legal tender?
If I sell groundnut, instead of having to collect cash from you the buyer, you could just transfer the credit to me. Its instantaneous! I get the alert, you get the groundnut immediately!
Same goes for the vegetable seller, and the mallam that sells custom-made indomie down the street.
And yes! Don't forget the suya seller! Its instant.

The credit goes round and round so there is no cause for worries. Of course to get your cash back, you might need to sell the credit to anyone who will buy. This means everyone will be selling credit - kills the retailer business a bit but, it pays in the end, as it is all free and the networks eventually wont need to print recharge cards anymore! Besides, there may be no need to cash out at all. Let me paint a scenario for you:


Akin wakes up in the morning, and strolls to his wardrobe to brush his teeth. He finds his toothpaste tube empty, and grabs his phone as he hurries to Oga Audu, the Mallam at the kiosk three houses away.
"Sanu Oga Audu" he greets the mallam.
"Sanu Oga Akin," Audu responds. "How I fit helep you this morning?"
"I need toothpaste oga" Akin responds. "How much is this one?"
"120 naira oga," Audu replies as he pulls out his phone.
"Ok, abeg give me your number again make I transfer," Akin says as he opens his MTN Services application on his phone.
Seconds later Audu's phone beeps, indicating that he has received an sms. He smiles and hands over the toothpaste to Akin, who thanks him and hurries back home to get ready for work.

Thirty minutes later, Sherifat, Akin's sister is blocking the door, barring Akin from leaving the flat.
"Bro Akin you promised to give me some credit for my handouts today," She mutters. "Please now"
"Sheri, I don't have time for this o!" Akin bellows. "You want me to be late for work ni?"
"No now," Sheri pleads. "Please, oya just promise you will transfer 400 naira to me before noon."
"Will that be okay for your handout?" akin asks.
"It is half," Sheri replies. "Mummy has already transferred the other half last night."
"Smart girl," Akin says as he opens the door. "I promise you will get it before noon okay? Bye bye."
He closes the door on Sheri's doubtful face.
------
"Papa! I don dey go school o!" Young Ahmed shouts as he straightens his worn out socks.
"Bye bye" Oga Audu, his father shouts back to him from his kiosk.
"Papa! No credit for break time today?" Ahmed asks.
"No credit!" his father replies, and watches his face crumble before adding. "I don transfer 50 naira to the akara seller in your school for you."
Ahmed's face lit up at the news. Oga Audu shook his head. sometimes he felt his son went to school only for the food.
"Na go de Papa!" the boy says, before turning around and running to the junction.
------
Akin peeps out of the window of the bus, and glares at the traffic a third time. It was as if Time was determined to make sure he was late today. He gets down from the bus and stands at the side of the street, looking up and down for an okada [commercial motorcycle]. Finally he spots one, signals it to come closer, and within ten minutes, he arrives in front of his office.
Just in time too, with five minutes to spare.
"Oga," Akin addresses the okada rider. "Abeg quick give me your number make I transfer. How much u go charge me sef?"
"50 naira oga." the rider responds. "my number na..." he reels of his number from memory.
Ten seconds later
"Oga thank you. Have a good day" he says as he starts his okada and Akin walks into his office compound smiling as he remembers the days when they would both have to start looking for change and the purpose of taking the bike would be defeated as he would invariably be late.
-------
The okada rider parks his bike in front of the bukateria. He is famished and had been heading there before Akin called him.
"Mama Kike good morning o!" he calls out as he takes a seat where he can keep his eye on his okada.
"Good morning Oga Silvanus!" Mama Kike, the food seller responds. "How your night? Wetin you wan chop today?"
"We thank God o. Bring rice and beans, and dodo and four meat." Silvanus responds.
"Wetin you wan drink?" Mama Kike asks as she sets the food in front of him.
"Bring coke madam," he grunts as he digs into the food.
Twenty minutes later she goes to him as he pushes his empty plate and coke bottle forward and begins picking his teeth.
"Mama Kike how much be my money o," he says around the toothpick in his mouth.
"Meat na 200, rice na 100, beans na 50 naira, and the coke na 20 naira." she responds. "Total na 370 naira oga."
As she greets a newcomer, Silvanus sends the credit to her phone.
"My phone number na..." she says to him, as her phone begins to beep.
"I don save you number Madam," Silvanus cuts her short as he rises from his seat. "I don send the credit sef. Na the SMS e go be wey enter your phone just now."
"Yes o!" she responds, "Na im! Oga thank you! Make I dey expect you for evening abi?"
"Yes," Silvanus. "Na akpu I wan chop by then o. No tell me say una no get dis time! Bye bye"
---------
SIX HOURS LATER
"Kike! Kike!" Mama Kike shouts from her cooking spot. Her daughter Kike had just arrived from school and she needed her to buy some things.
"Yes ma!" Kike shouts back as she appears by her mother's side.
"I need fufu o," Mama Kike says in a lower voice. "And Ugu vegetables. Please go into the market close by to buy both."
"Ok ma," Kike responds, swooping down to grab her mother's phone on the stool. "How much?"
"Buy 500 naira fufu and 400 ugu." Mama Kike replies as she continues stirring the soup on the fireplace.
"Ok mummy," Kike responds.
"Don't take long o!" Mama Kike shouts after her.
------
"Mama Sola, you no go close?" Mama Aliu shouts to her neighbor as she carries her garri basin into her tiny shop.
"I don dey close o," Mama Sola replies. "Nah Kike come buy fufu and we never finish to dey count am."
"Abeg do quick and close," Mama Aliu shouts back as she carries her Beans basin in as well. "Nah we remain for market. Everybody don close finish."
"Mama wait!" Sheri shouts as she runs towards Mama Aliu's shop front. "I wan buy garri ma!"
"Why you just dey enter market now?" Mama Aliu grumbles. "I don close o."
"Mama no vex na," Sheri pleads as she rummages in her bag for her phone. "Nah just 600 naira garri I wan buy abeg."
"I don carry am enter o," Mama Aliu insists.
"Abeg ma," Sheri kneels down on the hard ground. "My brother will kill me if I don't buy it today. Please ma"
"Mama Aliu sell am for am now," Mama Sola says as she waits for Kike's transfer delivery to get to her phone, while packing up. "See as how she kneel down so. To find young girl wey go do like that e rare o. She be good gal."
"Ok you get lucky today o!" Mama Aliu says as she turns around and gets her measuring bowls. "Oya start the transfer now now as I dey measure! My number na 08031234567"

Minutes later, they had closed up shop and are on their way home. Sheri is already on an okada to take her home.
---------
"Hmm," Akin grunted as he rubs his tummy in satisfaction. "That was some meal."
Sheri smiles at him in pleasure.
"Your husband will enjoy you well well," Akin adds as he stretches out his feet in front of him.
"Thanks for the compliments," Sheri says as she clears the dishes from the tiny dining table in the one bedroom apartment. "And thanks for transferring the credit in time this afternoon."
"Really?" Akin asks, around the toothpick in his mouth, his eyes still closed. "It was in time?"
"Yes it was," Sheri replies from the tiny kitchen. "I was able to transfer the credit to the Captain and get my copy before the lecturer entered the class. I made your favorite eba and egusi just to say thank you, you know."
"Ah!" Akin exclaims. "If that is what it will take to get my favorite meal, I will start transferring credit to your phone everyday o!"
Sheri and Akin burst out laughing.

---THE END---

Everybody gets paid, without charges as it is free via credit transfer. MTN VTU is ideal for this as almost everybody has[ or has had] an MTN line, but other networks also do credit transfer for free.
What do you think?

Kill Corruption, not Subsidy

As I write, a revolution is ongoing in Nigeria. The Youth have finally woken up and realized that they cannot depend on the current 'elders' to secure their future. The youth have finally seen that they cannot just sit on their hands.

But while we are all pointing fingers at the Senators, House of Rep members and the President's cabinet, we need to also look into ourselves.

Are we also not corrupt? Are we clean? Are we sure it is not a case of the pot calling the kettle black?

For those of us that might say, 'I am not corrupt', we need to really do a reality check. Corruption should be eradicated at ALL levels, from the nursery school child to the oldest Nigerian citizen.

Here is a brief checklist - not exhaustive but it should clue you in:

 - If you sell anything [from garri, to marykay, to land, to flash drives], and you make more than 50% profit margin[profit not selling cost o], YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you help someone to get a job, and you expect a percentage of his salary, YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you help someone get a contract and you expect a share of the profit, [without stating your claims before your assistance o!] then YOU ARE CORRUPT. If the share you are demanding is a lion's share of the profit, YOU ARE VERY CORRUPT.

 - If you are in a position to manage service providers [from suppliers of meat in a Bukateria, to service providers to large businesses e.g. oil companies], and you demand that they 'grease your palm' to continue to receive favor, YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you can carry out your contract with 10% of what you demand as price then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you spend less than 30% of your time doing other things instead of doing the work your employer pays you for, then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you go around stealing other people's ideas and parading them as your own then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you collect bribe, or 'thank you' in any form [cash or kind] then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you are placed in a position of judgment and you do not do your duty without partiality or bias, then, YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you do not pay your employers according to the work they do for you and hours they spend for you then, YOU ARE CORRUPT.


Let's just face it, everyone needs a cleansing in Nigeria.
Kill Corruption not Subsidy - Yes I agree.
But the murder of corruption starts with YOU and I.
NOW

Kill Corruption, not Subsidy

As I write, a revolution is ongoing in Nigeria. The Youth have finally woken up and realized that they cannot depend on the current 'elders' to secure their future. The youth have finally seen that they cannot just sit on their hands.

But while we are all pointing fingers at the Senators, House of Rep members and the President's cabinet, we need to also look into ourselves.

Are we also not corrupt? Are we clean? Are we sure it is not a case of the pot calling the kettle black?

For those of us that might say, 'I am not corrupt', we need to really do a reality check. Corruption should be eradicated at ALL levels, from the nursery school child to the oldest Nigerian citizen.

Here is a brief checklist - not exhaustive but it should clue you in:

 - If you sell anything [from garri, to marykay, to land, to flash drives], and you make more than 50% profit margin[profit not selling cost o], YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you help someone to get a job, and you expect a percentage of his salary, YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you help someone get a contract and you expect a share of the profit, [without stating your claims before your assistance o!] then YOU ARE CORRUPT. If the share you are demanding is a lion's share of the profit, YOU ARE VERY CORRUPT.

 - If you are in a position to manage service providers [from suppliers of meat in a Bukateria, to service providers to large businesses e.g. oil companies], and you demand that they 'grease your palm' to continue to receive favor, YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you can carry out your contract with 10% of what you demand as price then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you spend less than 30% of your time doing other things instead of doing the work your employer pays you for, then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you go around stealing other people's ideas and parading them as your own then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you collect bribe, or 'thank you' in any form [cash or kind] then YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you are placed in a position of judgment and you do not do your duty without partiality or bias, then, YOU ARE CORRUPT.

 - If you do not pay your employers according to the work they do for you and hours they spend for you then, YOU ARE CORRUPT.


Let's just face it, everyone needs a cleansing in Nigeria.
Kill Corruption not Subsidy - Yes I agree.
But the murder of corruption starts with YOU and I.
NOW

10 Tips on How to Work from Home in Nigeria

This is my first post this year and to my readers I apologize. I apologize because it took a threat from one of you to come here.
Its been hectic - Getting adjusted to 'After-The-Wedding' life and new working environment and all that. Although someone will say that working from home isn't a new environment but believe me, it is.
I spent Primary 5 and 6 and all of my Secondary school education as a Boarding student. My Mum usually had to resort to threats to get me to come home when I was in the University, so for me it is a new environment.

The daily routine is ...different because I spend more time working unconsciously. Normal working hours are 8 to 5, but I find myself working longer because I never really leave work. I didnt really see it in this light until my mother came visiting.
"What is your husband having for breakfast?" she would ask, to which I would just point to the fridge.
"What will your husband eat when he returns?" my Mum would ask, to which I would just nod my head. After he left, she gave me THE talk.

I know Nigeria is going to start adopting the work-from-home methods of conducting business so I have a few pointers for the employees that might start jumping up and down if they ever find themselves in such a position [and also for those that envy the home-workers]:

1. Work Area: You need to set a particular area for work and work alone. I learnt this the hard way - first I worked on the dining table, because I felt the study was too 'serious' for me. Then I progressed to the living room carpet with a cushioning pillow under my chest. Then I ended up in the bedroom, but I was still not so comfy until I found myself in the Study. That was the best place for me to work because it was made for work. You need an environment that sets you up in 'Work Mode', that will not let you stray and that you can consciously leave after work hours.

2. Ground Rules: You need to lay some ground rules, and I am not talking about rules for the children. You need those rules for yourself - YES YOU! You need to decide what you will be attending to when you re within work hours and what you can term an emergency. For me I thank God my husband loves Cereal for Breakfast, so its easy to set up his meal before I resume online. After he leaves for work, the only emergency that can get me up from my desk is if the gate is burning. I keep my breakfast within reach so when I get hungry I wont have to stray far. I don't have kids yet, but I am sure most parents can sort out how to keep the kids away.

3. Distraction: This leads to distractions - try to keep them at a bare minimum. For me I keep the TV off, and the Radio, I'm so quiet that my neighbors usually don't even know when I'm in the house. I also stay away from the kitchen and snacks - working from home is one of the fastest ways to gain weight because you are almost always sitting down, and its worse when you keeps snacks around you and just eat and eat and eat. You have to fight the urge to eat junk even more if you work from home.

4. Exercise: Because you sit all through and hardly leave the house, your body will retain everything it takes in because there is no activity to use to burn it out. You have to find a way to stay active. After closing, I go for 30 minute walks that are sometimes brisk, sometimes slow. It gives me time to also think and plan, especially when there is a hard nut to crack on my work-table. You can also do some exercise while working - stand up for a few minutes and len over the table. Walk around the room. Stretch. Go to the front door and return. It will keep your blood flowing.

5. Electricity and Internet: To work efficiently you have to make sure that these two are available to you all the time. The Office wont want to hear excuses like 'NEPA took the light', or 'My Internet finished'. No, they just want you to deliver, and they already feel they are pampering you by letting you work from home anyway so, you have to go out of yourway to ensure that the two are available. For me I have Starcomms internet, and use MTN as backup. I have an inverter that can last up to 5 hours and we just bought a generator recently [#lightupnigeria already!].

6. Follow-up: Whatever you're working on, you have to keep up the communication. Whether its through Yahoo Messenger, or Skype, you must be visible to the office people. What I did was to create a group for office members and every morning I log on and become visible to them during work hours. It is essential that they know that you are working as well. Even when I am mobile, I try to stay online via mobile messenger.

7. Breaktime: Do not joke with your lunch/break time. You need that one hour to do other pressing things like washing the dinner plates from last night, finishing up laying the bed that you started before you resumed work, or grabbing that bite of food. At the same time do not extend the time. Let your system get used to only one hour of freedom before getting back to work.

8. Food: Watch what you eat for lunch. I am talking as a proper Nigerian babe now - don't go and be eating Garri and leftover afang soup, or pounded yam and oha soup o! You will just sleep off for the rest of the day - and that is the truth! Eat light - pretend you are at work physically, would you have packed that pounded yam to work? Would you have eaten it right in the canteen? Seriously? I prefer rice [and beans sometimes] for lunch, and I can even call it breakfast because I do not normally eat before noon. Anything that will take more than one hour to cook AND eat is off your list.

9. Call Base: Even though they can see your mails and messages online at work, it is necessary for you to call the office, at least once  week. This is essential for out of town home-workers like me, who cannot pop into the office anytime. This will keep the memory of you fresh in their minds [especially the accountant who handles the salary].

10. Family : Last of all but not the least, please do NOT neglect your family o! Close on time! Now you have the grace to close on the dot of 5pm! Do not extend work any longer than necessary. Give your family the quality time they deserve.
So its been six months and I finally can balance it all well - I should think so!

10 Tips on How to Work from Home in Nigeria

This is my first post this year and to my readers I apologize. I apologize because it took a threat from one of you to come here.
Its been hectic - Getting adjusted to 'After-The-Wedding' life and new working environment and all that. Although someone will say that working from home isn't a new environment but believe me, it is.
I spent Primary 5 and 6 and all of my Secondary school education as a Boarding student. My Mum usually had to resort to threats to get me to come home when I was in the University, so for me it is a new environment.

The daily routine is ...different because I spend more time working unconsciously. Normal working hours are 8 to 5, but I find myself working longer because I never really leave work. I didnt really see it in this light until my mother came visiting.
"What is your husband having for breakfast?" she would ask, to which I would just point to the fridge.
"What will your husband eat when he returns?" my Mum would ask, to which I would just nod my head. After he left, she gave me THE talk.

I know Nigeria is going to start adopting the work-from-home methods of conducting business so I have a few pointers for the employees that might start jumping up and down if they ever find themselves in such a position [and also for those that envy the home-workers]:

1. Work Area: You need to set a particular area for work and work alone. I learnt this the hard way - first I worked on the dining table, because I felt the study was too 'serious' for me. Then I progressed to the living room carpet with a cushioning pillow under my chest. Then I ended up in the bedroom, but I was still not so comfy until I found myself in the Study. That was the best place for me to work because it was made for work. You need an environment that sets you up in 'Work Mode', that will not let you stray and that you can consciously leave after work hours.

2. Ground Rules: You need to lay some ground rules, and I am not talking about rules for the children. You need those rules for yourself - YES YOU! You need to decide what you will be attending to when you re within work hours and what you can term an emergency. For me I thank God my husband loves Cereal for Breakfast, so its easy to set up his meal before I resume online. After he leaves for work, the only emergency that can get me up from my desk is if the gate is burning. I keep my breakfast within reach so when I get hungry I wont have to stray far. I don't have kids yet, but I am sure most parents can sort out how to keep the kids away.

3. Distraction: This leads to distractions - try to keep them at a bare minimum. For me I keep the TV off, and the Radio, I'm so quiet that my neighbors usually don't even know when I'm in the house. I also stay away from the kitchen and snacks - working from home is one of the fastest ways to gain weight because you are almost always sitting down, and its worse when you keeps snacks around you and just eat and eat and eat. You have to fight the urge to eat junk even more if you work from home.

4. Exercise: Because you sit all through and hardly leave the house, your body will retain everything it takes in because there is no activity to use to burn it out. You have to find a way to stay active. After closing, I go for 30 minute walks that are sometimes brisk, sometimes slow. It gives me time to also think and plan, especially when there is a hard nut to crack on my work-table. You can also do some exercise while working - stand up for a few minutes and len over the table. Walk around the room. Stretch. Go to the front door and return. It will keep your blood flowing.

5. Electricity and Internet: To work efficiently you have to make sure that these two are available to you all the time. The Office wont want to hear excuses like 'NEPA took the light', or 'My Internet finished'. No, they just want you to deliver, and they already feel they are pampering you by letting you work from home anyway so, you have to go out of yourway to ensure that the two are available. For me I have Starcomms internet, and use MTN as backup. I have an inverter that can last up to 5 hours and we just bought a generator recently [#lightupnigeria already!].

6. Follow-up: Whatever you're working on, you have to keep up the communication. Whether its through Yahoo Messenger, or Skype, you must be visible to the office people. What I did was to create a group for office members and every morning I log on and become visible to them during work hours. It is essential that they know that you are working as well. Even when I am mobile, I try to stay online via mobile messenger.

7. Breaktime: Do not joke with your lunch/break time. You need that one hour to do other pressing things like washing the dinner plates from last night, finishing up laying the bed that you started before you resumed work, or grabbing that bite of food. At the same time do not extend the time. Let your system get used to only one hour of freedom before getting back to work.

8. Food: Watch what you eat for lunch. I am talking as a proper Nigerian babe now - don't go and be eating Garri and leftover afang soup, or pounded yam and oha soup o! You will just sleep off for the rest of the day - and that is the truth! Eat light - pretend you are at work physically, would you have packed that pounded yam to work? Would you have eaten it right in the canteen? Seriously? I prefer rice [and beans sometimes] for lunch, and I can even call it breakfast because I do not normally eat before noon. Anything that will take more than one hour to cook AND eat is off your list.

9. Call Base: Even though they can see your mails and messages online at work, it is necessary for you to call the office, at least once  week. This is essential for out of town home-workers like me, who cannot pop into the office anytime. This will keep the memory of you fresh in their minds [especially the accountant who handles the salary].

10. Family : Last of all but not the least, please do NOT neglect your family o! Close on time! Now you have the grace to close on the dot of 5pm! Do not extend work any longer than necessary. Give your family the quality time they deserve.
So its been six months and I finally can balance it all well - I should think so!

Nigeria’s Bank crisis

Since friday I decided not to comment on what was going on in the banking industry here in Nigeria, partly because I was three busy, and partly because I really do not 'vent' about politics. Yes, I vent about the upcoming wedding, the office, and other things but not really about politics. But this one, I have to vent.
I read a post on 234Next about the banks crisis and the moves that CBN has made to try to change things, and it was alright. The information was shocking but still Nigerian. Then I read the comments.
I encourage everyone to click the link above and read the comments thoroughly. It appears that there are some Nigerians who don't realize that every decision-making office in Nigeria is rapidly being filled with underqualified [or in some cases, unqualified] Katsina and Kaduna state people. I started with 'it appears' cos I do not want to believe it is true. I encourage everyone to read through THISDAY newspaper, yesterday's edition.
Meanwhile this was my response to the writeup:
BANJI AHMED and all those condemning AKEEM KOLA ADEBAYO, I think you missed his point. When he was talking about tribal activity he was not talking about the banks issue alone. Take a good look at the recent activities in FERMA, PHCN, CBN and other key decision-making posts in the country - you will see that the top crop is being replaced by unqualified, or lower level underqualified katsina and kaduna men. Just look well. One retired northerner even wrote a signed statement about it - it was in yesterday's papers. I personally know that the FERMA head was sacked without preamble. That is what he is refering to, not the bank issues alone!

While CBN has the authority to caution erring banks, I do not see how they have the veto power to 'sack' bank MDs and chairmen, especially banks created by private hands. And I also agree with the fact that people's assets should not be seized to pay the debts incured from failing businesses, only the collateral.

While the US has given us till 2013 before we implode, I for one pray that the tension wont give way before then. Since friday one statement I heard during Abacha's rule has been echoing in my head = 'The northerners are born to rule. The others are born to serve them.'

Let's all start praying for Nigeria o!

Nigeria’s Bank crisis

Since friday I decided not to comment on what was going on in the banking industry here in Nigeria, partly because I was three busy, and partly because I really do not 'vent' about politics. Yes, I vent about the upcoming wedding, the office, and other things but not really about politics. But this one, I have to vent.
I read a post on 234Next about the banks crisis and the moves that CBN has made to try to change things, and it was alright. The information was shocking but still Nigerian. Then I read the comments.
I encourage everyone to click the link above and read the comments thoroughly. It appears that there are some Nigerians who don't realize that every decision-making office in Nigeria is rapidly being filled with underqualified [or in some cases, unqualified] Katsina and Kaduna state people. I started with 'it appears' cos I do not want to believe it is true. I encourage everyone to read through THISDAY newspaper, yesterday's edition.
Meanwhile this was my response to the writeup:
BANJI AHMED and all those condemning AKEEM KOLA ADEBAYO, I think you missed his point. When he was talking about tribal activity he was not talking about the banks issue alone. Take a good look at the recent activities in FERMA, PHCN, CBN and other key decision-making posts in the country - you will see that the top crop is being replaced by unqualified, or lower level underqualified katsina and kaduna men. Just look well. One retired northerner even wrote a signed statement about it - it was in yesterday's papers. I personally know that the FERMA head was sacked without preamble. That is what he is refering to, not the bank issues alone!

While CBN has the authority to caution erring banks, I do not see how they have the veto power to 'sack' bank MDs and chairmen, especially banks created by private hands. And I also agree with the fact that people's assets should not be seized to pay the debts incured from failing businesses, only the collateral.

While the US has given us till 2013 before we implode, I for one pray that the tension wont give way before then. Since friday one statement I heard during Abacha's rule has been echoing in my head = 'The northerners are born to rule. The others are born to serve them.'

Let's all start praying for Nigeria o!