Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Perception is key (2)

Perceptions are so important.  In the last feature, I spoke about the Nigerian people's perception of ourselves. This feature is about the external perception of Nigeria.

I mentioned something about that before in 'Why should I care?' But I shall go in depth in this one.

Starting from the airport. A fellow friend of mine and satirical blogger, Afam, wrote a piece about his adventures at the Nigerian airport. Albeit amusing, it had a couple of deep threads.

a) Corruption
b) Backward facilities
c) Lack of organisation

Looking externally now, we know that airports are the pride and joy of some of the countries in this world. The Dubai airport for starters, is a place where you can get lost in, for days!

The airport is a person's first impression of a country. Our airport with the little improvements the Aviation Committee have made, is still  a very uncomfortable place. It doesn't look modern. They conveyor belts don't work, the escalators barely function. The lounges are not too bad, if you have a First Class ticket of course. Otherwise, you are left in the heat with no food, water, or proper duty free to keep yourself busy.

Although some of you may ask, how is the airport any concern of ours or how is the airport that important? Well I'll tell you. If our airport is bad, outsiders perception of our country is already damning from the moment they step foot on Nigerian soil.

That is important because we have so many people flying to and from Nigeria. Important colleagues, businessmen, vendors, stars etc. We do not want their first impression of our country to be a negative one. They last a lifetime. The airport is also one of the easiest places to fix, when discussing the plenitude of issues with Nigeria. We have great architecture firms in Lagos and Abuja. The government should hire one, get the tenders necessary and get started. How can our local airport (MM2), be nicer than our International one?
In fact if MM2 is anything to go by, then we know that the government can produce a swanky airport, so what are they waiting for?

The negative stigma that our country already carries abroad, is more than enough to cause a fellow Nigerian to hide under a rock. Let us at least try and give them something good to talk about. How great our airport is? How nice the people are? (LOL). Albeit superficial, it leaves a lasting impression.

Please find Afam's post below:

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