The Trials of a Nigerian Corps Member

Due to my recent post on my fishing adventure , some of my friends now think I’m in a sort of fish heaven. Well, I really wish they were right.

Life is a combination of the good, bad and ugly experiences one goes through. That post was about one of the good moments, I think it will only be fair to share the ugly or not-so good experiences also.

Join me in another of my NYSC stories, this time, about the ugly.

I’ve spent about one month in the NYSC PPA* scheme, so who am I to write about the trials of a corps member? But write I will, ‘cos everyone’s got their experiences.

I was reposted to a village school with no power supply, no water and poor internet. In short, the only network available is MTN, and the best you can get out of it is edge i.e 2G.

For anyone that knows me, such a place is not in list of places that I hope to find myself for a year. Nevertheless, this place is an improvement to where I was posted to at the first. It was just as if NYSC was trying to make a joke of me.

Back to the matter, after a lot of confusion, prayers, and deliberation, I went to Lagos, packed my bags as big as I could and then zoomed down to my PPA.
The first major shock to me was that, it is rain water we’ll be using for everything (from washing, to bathing and cooking). For me, that was a no-no, typhoid no be joke o, but what will I do? So, I began to adapt. Once it doesn’t rain for some days, it’s either we send students to fetch water from the river or we send them to buy water for us, both of which are not easy because our lodge is at the extreme of the community.

We managed to repair the generator in our lodge, but, kudos to the man that repaired the generator, the generator decided to burn every charger plugged to it. So, my phone chargers and laptop charger all got burnt. This wasn’t funny, because due to the nature of what I do, I need power supply and internet access and there was no way I could get to charge my phone and power banks . I was able to get new chargers for my phone, but I couldn’t get a charger for my laptop. It hasn’t been easy, we have to take to take our devices to the community to charge in the evenings.

The internet connection is no better. Sometimes, trying to open a site or creating a post is like a torture. To create a post on WordPress, I’ll have to load the page over and over again. Sometimes, it’s so frustrating that I just want to throw in the towel, but, eh, that’s not in my DNA. I ain’t gonna give up.

The next thing should be how to solve these problems, yeah?
1. About the power supply : The lack of power supply has been a long standing problem in this community ( for about two years now), but thankfully, the problem is in the process of being fixed. The power project has already begun; fallen poles are been raised and wires connected. Hopefully, the project would be completed before the end of the year; but as of now, we are making do with what we have.

2. About the water : The one and only time we had to fetch water from the river, it was as if Milo had been mixed with the water. The water was practically the color of tea, we had to throw it away. Although, there are a few boreholes in the community where we can buy water from, it’s kinda difficult because our lodge is at the extreme of the community.
P.S: there is a borehole in our lodge, but, it isn’t functioning and even if it was functioning, there’s no power supply to pump it. Sad, yeah?

3. About the internet connection : I do not know what to do about this yet, so I work hard at being persistent and consistent.

There are definitely a lot of things to be fixed in this community, the school inclusive.

The school is big and it has 5 blocks of classrooms, with only a few being used. I would say, the school isn’t using up to its full potential, but hopefully, things are going to get better.

PPA – Place of Primary Assignment.

P.S: I didn’t write this post to complain or to be sullen, rather, to state it as it is.


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