Johnson Babalola
October 5, 2023

Brooda, e ba ma tii ritaya! (Brother, you should not have retired)

Here is a story a friend told me today and I wanted to share it with my readers.

AKK has been in Canada for many years. In those years, he worked all kinds of jobs to survive.  Although a professional teacher from Nigeria, he worked as a cleaner, store assistant and others before qualifying to practice his profession. All through, he was committed to assisting his extended family back home in Nigeria.  This is the story of many immigrants.

In particular, he has a younger brother, PP in Nigeria that he has supported morally and financially over the years. He assisted the brother to be educated. When the brother could not hold paid employment, he assisted him to start different businesses at different times. The brother did not make a success of any of them. He wanted to assist him to legally relocate to Canada or another country. PP declined saying “eleda mi o gbe orile ede miran” (my destiny does not live in another country). AKK continues to provide his brother with monthly financial support to keep him going. He continued to encourage him to be focused, make something positive out of his life and do something for himself and with his time. Nothing changed with PP.

Recently however, AKK retired and called PP and they had this conversation:

“Aburo, mo ti ritaya. Mi o ni le ran e lowo mo.” (My younger brother, I am now retired and will not be able to support you any longer).

“Brooda, e ba ma tii ritaya.” (My brother, you should not have retired).

“Kilode?” (Why not?).

“E ba ma tii ritaya rara” (You should not have retired at all).

“Awon egbe mi ni Nigeria ti ritaya tipe” (My mates in Nigeria are long retired).

“Awon egbe yin nile niyen. Ko ye ke tii ritaya o. Ko pay wa o. Sebi awon ore yin adajo ati ojogbon eko giga si wa nibi ise” (Those are your mates back home. You should not have retired. This is not in our interest. Moreover, your friends, the judge and the university professor are still working).

“My friends, based on their professions can work till age 70 if they desire. Moreover, this is not about my friends. This is about me. I see that this is about your interest.”

“Eyin ni mo gboju le. Mi o ti kole. Mi o ti seyawo. Mi o ti ra moto.” (I rely on you. I have not built a house. I am not married yet. I have not bought a car)

“I have done more than I should do for you. I gave you an education.  I advised you about life and that you should invest in yourself and your future. I advised you never to rely on anyone in life but on yourself while you learn from others. I assisted you to find employments, but you did not last in any of them. I set you up in businesses, but you messed up. I offered you an opportunity to leave Nigeria. You declined. Yet, I remained patient with you, taking care of your daily needs. While I constantly warned you that this day would come, you did not take me seriously. This is not your decision my dear brother.  It is my decision, and I am already retired. I hope you will be able to pull yourself together and channel a pathway to success for yourself. You know I love you. Please call me any time you need advice.  I am happy your house rent is paid for the next one year. From today henceforth, there will be no more financial support from me to you.  Greetings from my wife. As I wish you all the best, remember that it is not too late to make positive changes to your life. Time waits for no one.”

“Mo gbe. Brooda, e ba ma tii ritaya o….” (I am in trouble. Brother, you should not have retired …)

Johnson Babalola, a Canada and Nigeria based lawyer, leadership consultant, storyteller and corporate emcee, is a public affairs analyst. Follow him for discussions on real life issues that affect us all.

You can obtain a copy of his newly released book, REJECTED on Amazon, FriesenPress, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Google Play, Apple Books, Nook Store etc.