Between 1990 and 2001, I worked in Nigeria (West Africa) 5 times. I guess I spent a total of about 2 years there.
It is Africa's most populous country with more than 120 million peoples. Nigeria is rich in natural resources. OIL is their main export, thus the chief source of revenue. Internally, it is also rich with a history of dictatorships and corruption.
The people I know there just want to live a good life and be happy. They want to work and provide for their families. No different than right here in Houston, Texas. Because of the political situation for so many decades, the infrastructure is minimal for a country so rich. They experienced the first democratically-elected President in 1997, when Mr Obasanjo came to power. A former Army General himself and part of the past corrupt processes, he has tried to make positive changes. But most of his efforts are thwarted by greedy politicians and businessmen.
Today, Nigeria stands at a turning point. As Nigeria goes, so will the rest of West Africa. It can go forward, or it can return to the dark days. They need outside help to make it work. Most Nigerians want it to work. It will take pressure from the rest of the world (not only the United States and Great Britain). But today, Nigeria is largely ignored. The results of that will be disastrous for Africa.
CLICK HERE to read one man's plea to President Bush for help and assistance.