Johnson Babalola
August 31, 2023

Nigeria's Economic Problems: The Drone Experience

Nigerians are the best analysts of the nation’s problems. Leaders and others take to the media to speak about why the nation’s economy is stunted. The social media is awash with the big reasons like “we are not exporting enough”, “there is a lot of corruption in the system”, “we lack infrastructures” “our education system is nothing to write home about” etc. While all these are true and should be talked about and addressed, we often forget the little things that have huge impacts on the nation’s economy. I sum them up under a single word: selfishness.  Sadly, and if the truth is to be told, majority (not all) of us are simply selfish.  It is almost impossible for a selfish people to birth, nurture, grow and make a success of a nation. Everyone reading this might have already concluded “JB is not referring to me”. Really? In the next few weeks, we’ll go through some of the little things that impact the growth of our nation. We start with the drone experience.

Early this year, a client attended my office in Toronto to discuss business immigration. Then we got talking about why he wanted to leave Nigeria.

“Sir, as you know, I am a young Pilot though with 10 years international experience and business exposure.  I am highly successful and I have a business head. I cater to private clients, obviously the rich”

“I know”

“So, I got this idea to start a drone manufacturing company in Nigeria. I registered the company, got the land, got my business plan done, got the finance and made my applications for approvals”


” Then I got stuck “

“What happened?”

” One of the approving agencies refused to grant approval “

“They must have good reasons”

“Well, so I thought until I had a meeting with the Board. At the meeting, I was asked why I flew a particular politician about 6 months earlier. I responded that I was hired to fly him like others. Then, they told me they would keep my approval on hold.”


“Seriously sir. I am now working on establishing the business in another African country.  Within 3 months, I got all my approvals. As Nigerians, we must not allow personal vendetta to have a place in making decisions that will move the nation forward. We must change our attitudes and see beyond politics in building the economy of the country. How many people like me, have had their investment dreams in the country truncated for similar reasons? I bet there are many of us. May God help us to help our nation”

“Wow! We are our own enemies. It helps if every Nigerian does a soul search about the roles, he or she had played one time or the other in truncating for selfish reasons, brilliant business ideas that would have moved the nation forward. I hope you return someday. Nigeria remains a nation with a lot of potentials”

“If the conditions change for the better, I will consider it”

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.