Nigerian duplicity has its roots in the dissonance between orthodox religion introduced by colonialists and our traditional beliefs. I don't know why it has refused to die. Someone asked for a favor last week and I later confirmed from another that he wasn't telling me everything
We keep complaining about lack of trust when a large percentage of our population in Nigeria just like to lie unprovoked. There was no reason for the lie the guy told me and discovering the truth saved me from a lot of embarrassment. He is avoiding me now.
How can people permanently live a lie? It is easy, they were brought up that way. People's living rooms were a different world from their bedrooms or even kitchen. I was always shocked when I saw that. We were raised to make our beds and keep bedrooms tidy. Not other Nigerians.
It used to bother me as a child that people will be going to church and be very prominent but have juju shrines hidden in their backyards. Even Christian clergy were members of traditional cults. It was a permanent double life. Men had multiple families and hidden children too.
My grandfather was an Ifa priest. He never pretended to go to church. We had shrines open in the house. It was a struggle for my mother to bring us up as Catholic there. My parents breaking up probably saved me from the same duality. I had to choose one side eventually.
My father was also an Ifa priest but later converted to Christianity. He married many times but never had kids outside. What he said was his word. I am lucky to have grown up that way even in the midst of family conflict and turmoil.
This deep dissonance in Nigerians is what has crept into all of our governance structures in both the public and private sectors. Corruption is only a symptom of it. People who don't believe in government made laws and fear juju more will not obey the laws.
This is a major problem outside Nigeria. A friend told me of a Nigerian in Kenya has been owing everyone there in his circle and has no intention to pay. He keeps lying about a non-existent startup that has died. Integrity is not optional but our brethren think it is.
This shit is messing everyone up. Many times, I tell people that I am Edo and not Nigerian.