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In Search of Excellence

In search of excellence.
Once I boarded a Nigerian airline on an international route.
First, the temperature in the  cabin was too high, until passengers got up from their seats and a riot was going to start. Then it suddenly went down to normal. The explanation was that they had problems with the cooling system. Aint they supposed to be heating at that height? Geography says that under Normal Environmental Lapse Rate, the higher you go, the cooler it becomes!
Then we had to request for headphones, but somehow, “they” did  not check in to that flight.   Okay. We’d try and watch the videos without  audio. Then we found out that some Visual Display Units were working while some were n]ot!
One gentleman spoke up, “Only God knows what else is wrong with this plane!”
Another responded, “Abeg no talk that one o!” (Please don’t say that). We wished doom away!
While nothing critical happened on the flight, one just wonders how much it would cost to learn to adjust thermostat, sterilize headphones, and fix fuses of VDUs. Afterall the flight was not free!
On another trip on the same route with a foreign airline, blankets were already on the seat. And the 1st thing after take off was to give us headphones!   My mouth “droppeth open”!
Once I was leaving Nigeria, the Immigration Officer said, “Mr Man, where is your white card?”
I felt for him! Another disgruntled Nigerian! He looked like he was in my secondary school. But I prefered not to compound disappointment with shame by confirming that we are from the same roots! This is apart from several others reminding me that it was Friday and that weekend needed to be celebrated!
When I got to the other country, as black as I am, the whites greeted me politely and with a smile! The security guys took permission from me before patting down, not “raise your hands!”
I just wonder what it would take to be EXCELLENT!
GEJ was not the rude immigration person, OBJ was not the owner of the Nigerian airline. Boko Haram guys were not the ones asking for Tip.
Maybe if I could add a pinch of excellence to my daily deliverables, and you could add a pinch of excellence to yours Nigeria may be on the way to the desired haven!

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  1. Hmmmmmmm. Excellence is a journey. It doesn’t just come in a day. I wonder many times if this was how Nigeria was in the 80’s. Its so rotten & dilapitated right now that we have no shame anymore,no moral values & no respect for human presence. The airport alone is in chaos & need real development & orientation of the staffs especially the officers. Some of the officers will even tell you how much they want you to drop & argue with you on it. The airlines,may God help us. The bottom of it all is simple “VALUE FOR LIFE” . The moment we realize excellence is a virtue & human life has Value…i pray & believe things can change. Individually,our mindset is the basics. When we have the right mindset, we will be doing things in the right way.

  2. We as Nigerians need the Deliverer, not a deliverer to take us to the desired goal of making our country what it should be – a country we can be proud of and even arrogantly claim as our own, anywhere in the world. Your experience is little compared with what older people like me have experienced over the years and keep experiencingm things work better and service providers behave better, even in relatively less developed, less afluent, less educated and exposed countries, neighbouring African countries inclusive. But keep writing, God could use you to effect the desired attitudinal changes. JF.

  3. The rot in the Nigerian system is so scary. I wonder how long it would take to clean the mess. I guess a little bit of excellence from everyone would improve things, but how do you explain that to an under paid security man with loads of responsibilities. Poverty is the cause of most of our problems. God help us!

  4. I guess it starts with each individual in our own little corner. If everyone does it in their own space, it will spread and Nigeria would be different. Excellence, it begins with me.

  5. I remember the trite words of an almost forgotten hymn in d good old ‘SOP’ (songs of praise)… It reads..
    “Little drops of water; little grains of sand; makes a mighty ocean; and a beauteous land. Little deeds of kindness ; shown by *** heart; makes our world an eden; like the heaven above”. (Sorry I’ve lost some words)
    It starts with the individual then it’s inculcated into the family unit and spreads into schools, organisations etc. I even believe it ought to be taught in schools and should be a basis for laying off workers who falls below standard.
    The change will definitely come if the cause can be sincerely championed.

  6. I love this! I love this!

  7. We can continue to say God should save us we need to seat down and rethink of our mistakes because lives of our love ones is important to us all if they that call there selves our leaders are not ready to amend there ways and see to the betterment and safety of the citizens.

  8. Barr. Ajibola Akinwale

    I agree totally with all responses to this post but beyond that, may |God heal our land.

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