‘Mugu’ is a Nigerian Pidgin term which means ‘Big fool’. In the West, it is mainly known in the context of Advance Fee Fraud.
When I landed in Lagos in April 2010, I didn’t fully realise what Mugu meant. Of course, I had heard about 419 and the Mugu/Maga’s who you, like an oil gusher, ‘hit money from’. But I always thought those were a small, sinister internet-based community of fraudsters who stayed in the shadows. How wrong was I? After six years of living and running a business in Lagos, I now fully appreciate the 360 all day, every day fight to not be the Mugu. And it’s tiring.
But a few small instances this week have made me hit peak annoyance. So do indulge me, as I rant.
I am naturally sceptical / suspicious / uninterested in trusting people. I am pessimistic in nature and seem to see the negatives / downside in most things. It’s just my delusions of grandeur propel me to do risky adventure capitalisms. I was like that when I landed in Lagos. But let’s say I was 9 (on a 1–1...