How I learnt to mind my business in Lagos

The summary of this in pidgin will be “Trouble dey sleep, yanga go wake am”


If you have ever been to Lagos or lived in Lagos then you may not even need to read this story – I assume you must have had your own share.

When this happened to me, I flashed back to the Bible story of “the Good Samaritan”, then I thought he was lucky he wasn’t in Lagos because two things could have happened, it’s either he gets attacked by whoever attacked the injured man or people start accusing him of being the one that harmed the man – well, maybe none of the two would have happened and I am just paranoid because of my experience.

On that day, I was putting on a shirt with the inscription “I love chips” – I didn’t know some other people must have read it as “I love slaps and punches”.

Passing through “computer village” (a very popular place in Lagos where different computer software and hardware are sold – also one of the city’s hotspot for hoodlums and fraudulent guys, hence, you must “shine your eyes” whenever you get there) – I went to put myself in a ” who send me” concern.


These two young ladies, NYSC members to be precise were in the “mouth of alligators” – they were about being duped by this set of street boys – I knew they were about being duped because I have fallen victim of the tactics being used on them. – I had the option of ignoring what they were passing through or try to help them out because they were youth Corp members and probably don’t know how Lagos was.

“Baby girls” were surrounded by these hefty guys who will physically intimidate you when you have realized that you are a victim. -but I didn’t still respect myself. I found my way in between them and tapped one of the ladies to come outside the circle, I immediately got a name for her, _”Jennifer, wow, so you are serving in Lagos! Come let’s talk”_ – it would have worked perfectly well! But it seems “Jennifer” thought I wanted to toast her …she didn’t understand the script I was acting on even while I was giving her signs that she and her friend are in trouble.

The next thing was one of the guys shouting from the crowd _”hezz! You know the girl?_ “- I have already said “yes”, she is my friend” but the unfortunate “Jennifer” quickly responded, “I don’t know him oh!

Gbom! Gbam! Gbom – punch and slaps I received in less than a second.

The effect of the hits almost got me falling into the pan of a woman frying Akara – Remember what was written on my shirt? Such jinx.

This is the evil trick always played- it’s a game of cards (black and red), you will be walking and someone will meet you saying you have won an amount of money, if you fall for it, you will then be told to come play a quick game -cards will be shuffled, if you pick the right card, you will win everything and more but if you don’t, everything you have will be collected. One of their teammates who you don’t suspect being among them starts the game then wins three times – so easy yeah?

Then it’s your turn, you lose your first round, then the first player (who you think is a victim like you) pleads for them to give you another chance. The guys will agree and say you should bring out everything you have so that they will hold to give you better control of the game – you will almost do whatever they say.

Then you play your second round- lose again.

The guy you gave your stuff must have evaporated from the crowd – the only way to get him back is to play the third round and win. – I bet you will never win.

Right in your front, you won’t know when the “bad guys” will disappear, you will just stand confused and wonder if it actually happened to you.

This is not even about claiming smart guy, these bad guys smartness is from Mars.

I hope the “baby girls” learned their lessons and I don’t even feel sorry for them again -not after the free slaps and punches I received on their behalf.

Welcome to Lagos.

Tourist Destinations, Travel & Tourism

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