BY Yusuf Adua
Developing an overly relaxed attitude to time is prevalent in some parts of Africa and the Caribbean. Lexicographers are known as the originators of coinages, codenamed this pejorative dastardly act of tardiness in appointments, meetings, and events “AFRICAN TIME”.
In Africa, The rate at which people become leisurely, relaxed, and less rigorously-scheduled calls for questioning when considering the clock-bound pace of daily life in the western world. Be it system, orientation, or culture, the open secret is that a quick fix is yawning because of the damning consequences” African time” has posed to the running of life in these affected areas.
More depressingly, the African time syndrome has been adopted as a cultural belief or much like a grand norm that even the most disciplined of men has made it a lifestyle. It all started from ceremonies punctuality and later transpired to every sector of our life, ranging from work to our worship place, parliamentary sitting, public hearing, It is now almost generally acceptable.
Senator Olusola Adeyeye, a representative of Osun Central constituency of Osun State expressed his displeasure over the usual uncharacteristic delay of plenaries of the 9th Nigerian senate at the final plenary of the dispensation, which carefully describes how rampant it is in these climes.
In a business enterprise, what was spospotted on its notice board should bother anyone who understands the importance of time ” All workers must resume work before 8 am, No workers will be forgiven, after exceeding the stipulated African Time. N.B African Time extension is 9 am”.
An attempt to overlook the dangers that this nonchalant attitude has infiltrated on us will always be futile because it is even becoming racist as some westerners have begun to attribute this attitude towards time to a particular race they calling it black people’s time.
Even in sports and recreation which are perceived to be the glucose to people’s lives, It was so funny that in the Nigerian Professional Football League, a match was fixed for 4 pm, and without any hindrance, the match started 4:30 pm. As if that was not enough, the match started without the commentator apologising for their misdeed. Do you think that can happen in the English Premier League, Spanish Laliga, or the Serie A?
It has even mixed with the personality of the trusted heads we have; a church service which was to start by 5 pm and at 5:20 pm it was invigorating that there’s no signal that the “meeting with the heavenly father” would be starting anytime soon.
No doubt about the fact that this careless behavior has destroyed many lives and has rendered many hopeless but what else can be said when some unprofessional event organisers who are supposed to be known for accurate timing always succumb to this disease by saying “Let’s add African Time to our allotted time”.
DON’T YOU KNOW AFRICAN TIME? It is a syndrome killing Africa and everywhere it is practiced that we need to fight and defeat.
This is the way forward towards combatting it:
If you are to attend an event by 9 am, endeavour to go there 30 minutes before time, and if after 5 minutes the program has not started, leave there immediately, Be principled and accurate.
Do not buy the idea that everybody is guilty of this sin, though, we gathered that a presidential media chat started 5 minutes behind schedule in Nigeria a couple of months ago, We can improve and be better. Let the change begin with us.
Trying to be specific when it comes to timing is not too much, it is particularly a norm so, Watch yourself today, No more African Time Let it be Specified time.
“Time is money”. This is an aphorism we must all try to comprehend. We appreciate you for taking your precious time to read this piece. Get back to us in the comment section.
Yusuf Adua is a professional journalist, content creator and political scientist from Oyo state, Nigeria
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