Nigerians are contemplating a proposal to change the name of their country. The BBC reports that for two weeks now federal lawmakers have been gathering the views of citizen across Nigeria to gather proposals for amendments to the country’s constitution, such as electoral reforms and the system of government.
However, one citizen, Adeleye Jokotoye, stunned all present at the hearing, which took place in Lagos. Jokotoye, a tax consultant, wants the name of the country changed. He says that ‘Nigeria’ was an imposition by past colonial masters. According to the BBC, ‘Nigeria’, derived from the River Niger, had been suggested by British Journalist Flora Shaw, who later married the British colonial administrator Lord Frederick Lugard.
Jokotoye wants the name changed to United African Republic to represent the hundreds of ethnic groups that make up Nigeria. His suggestion resulted in a storm on social media, with Nigerians mostly expressing alarm that they would become known as ‘Uraniums’. His alternative the United Alkebulan Republic, unfortunately has the same acronym: UAR.
According to the BBC, lawmakers will scrutinize countless suggestions from Nigerians in the coming weeks.
Umm Muhammed Umar