Where is Nnamdi Kanu?

In a flamboyant show of force the Nigerian government crushed Nnamdi Kanu’s budding Biafran uprising. Operation Python, was the name given to the army exercise that invaded Abia state to squelch the uprising of the Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB) movement on September 14th, 2017.

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Members of IPOB have since been arraigned before the Federal High Court Abuja on charges of treason but Nnamdi Kanu seems to have disappeared.

Reports in the media have said he was seen in Ghana, but many people think that is just a ruse. Some Nigerians have declared that an unthinkable atrocity was committed and Nnamdi Kanu’s lawyer has called on the army to produce his client. In a statement, the Nigerian army said they do not have Mr Kanu in their custody and they are unaware of his whereabouts.

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Even though, according to Nigerian Law, Nnamdi Kanu is being charged, many people are still concerned about his welfare. It is a fundamental human right that every life be protected. Was Nnamdi Kanu’s life protected? Was he killed? Was he seen in Ghana?

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If he is alive, where are the pictures? If he is alive, why hasn’t he made any statement to allay the fears of his supporters?

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If he is dead, why isn’t there any outcry by his family in social and mainstream media?

So many questions, not enough answers, but one question remains: where is Nnamdi Kanu?

 

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Why Reading Isn’t A Good CV Hobby & 20 More Suitable Options

Everyone in the job market has written an curriculum vitae or a CV. The aim is simple: to sell yourself to potential employers and convince them that you are the best person for the job. While most people understand the rudiments of bio data, education, work history and skills, many struggle with hobbies.

Hobbies may not be the first thing an employer looks at but they can be used as

• A tie break between equally skilled and qualified people

• A discussion starter to gauge communication skills (if you can’t speak well about your interests, then what hope does my company have?)

.• As a cultural fit and personality indicator

.• An indication that you can offer extra value

• As a measure of your versatility

 

So, why can’t you add reading?
First, everyone (in the modern employment world) reads. Listing it as a hobby can make you look boring, clueless or dull. “But I am none of those things!” You say. “I am interesting, innovative and intelligent. And READING IS MY HOBBY” Okay, point taken, but in that case you will have to be more specific and creative when expressing that.

For instance, you could specify the kind of material you read, think historical fiction, contemporary African fiction and/or classic literature. Or you could list it as literature (but make sure you know what that means: genres, figures of speech, etc). You could also frame it as volunteer work, for example being a first reader for a publication. And if the job is in the book industry (libraries, agencies, publishing) maybe you can write it just the way it is: reading.

To be honest, I never thought about reading as a hobby that was CV unworthy. I knew web-surfing was a no but it took a personal experience for me to realize reading wasn’t that great either.

I was interviewing new staff and I asked one of them what her hobbies were.

“I don’t have hobbies,” she said.

“Really? How? Everyone has a hobby.” I replied

“Reading,” she responded. And it was clear that was something she made up on the spot.

Maybe if she had mentioned that first and gone on to impress me with her vast knowledge of books (any type), we wouldn’t be here. But she didn’t and here we are.

So, reading and web-surfing are out. What else should you leave out of your CV? Witchcraft or any weird practices, any religious practices, eating/killing animals and treasure hunting, ‘socializing’,watching TV, and extreme or ‘dangerous’ sports.

What should you include? Hobbies that reflect on you positively and can (potentially) be useful to your employer. Consider activities in areas like

Games/Sport/Fitness

This is a beloved area for all employers. It portrays you as healthy, competitive, able to work on goals and fun. For many employers it also means you can bring them glory, for example during industry games (most sectors have them: Oil & Gas, Banking, Medicine etc).

Games like Scrabble and Chess show a love for critical thinking, calculated risk, hardworking and problem-solving.

Solo sports like running, yoga, cycling and swimming imply you are fit, motivated and healthy.

Team sports like basketball, football and volleyball show you can work on a team and are goal-oriented.

Every hobby says something. Choose wisely.

Creative Arts
Creative arts are also hobby gold. Most ‘non-creativea’ are in awe of creatives and fellow creatives usually have a sense of kin for their community. So creative writing, performing art, fine arts, craft-work are all excellent choices. Photography and Videography are also great choices who doesn’t want a great photographer for free?

Gardening/Pets/Agriculture
This is also welcome by most employers. It implies stewardship, patience, altruism and diligence. For bonus marks make it something exotic, think: Venetian roses, Pangolins, Miracle berry trees.

Exotic Interests
Pole dancing, stamp/coin collecting, bird watching, making perfumes and other unconventional hobbies are great too. They make you stand out. And they can make you memorable.

 

Finally, keep these tips in mind:

2-3 hobbies max

No lies

Keep hobbies towards the end of the CV

Make sure the rest of the CV is awesome.

And remember to share the good news when the offer comes. To your happiness, health, wealth and continued success, cheers. 🍷

 

 

 

 

Eight Businesses Young People Can Start With Little Or No Money

One thing almost all young people worry about is money. Most of us don’t have enough, don’t have it regularly and some of us don’t have it all. One of the ways to get money is start a business. Most businesses need lots of money and skills to start but some can be started with little or no capital.

These are eight jobs/businesses you can start with little or no money.

1. Teaching

When most people think of teaching, all they see is a classroom and a white board. It is more than that. Teaching involves passing on your knowledge, skills and experience to others.

If there is anything you can do well, than that is a potential teaching gig. Identify things you are good at and make a teaching plan. Can you sew, swim, dance, code, write, cook? Are you great at maths, martial arts, statistics, or English? Whatever you are good at, there is someone who wants to learn and is willing to pay. All you have to do is organise your lessons and find a medium. It could be online, home-based or in a facility.

Once you start, word will spread and more students will come in. And with them the money you need.
2. Marketing

Every business wants more patronage. Even the big businesses with billion dollar budgets. However, not every business can afford a team of marketing experts; that is where you come in.

Target businesses that have good services but lack visibility, an ideal location. Negotiate with them for commissions on the clients you bring. Spread the word through all your contacts online and offline. Smile to the bank or from the bank, or to your PayPal. All are good.
3. Agenting

Agents are in high demand across all sectors. You can be a real estate agent. You can be an athlete’s agent. You can even be a writer’s agent. There are so many opportunities. All you need to have a good eye for the niche and the connections between the buyer and the seller. Done.
4. Cleaning

Cleaning is a fact of life and one that most people would rather outsource. You can start small within your neighbourhood and build gradually from there. Many one man cleaning businesses have gone on to employ hundreds. Do it of you have a flair for it, or as a stepping stone. In any case, it is a vital business with an easy entry point.
5. Shopping

Most wealth people don’t have time to search for the things they want. Online shopping has helped but there is still a gap. That is where you walk in. You offer bespoke shopping services for the rich and busy. Spend some time acquainting yourself with the markets. Know the discounts and sales as well as the vendors you can trust. Match your client’s wish list with real goods that meet their needs. You earn a commission from your client and sometimes from the vendors too. Paid.
6. Personal training

Scientists have announced that for the first time ever, the overweight people on earth outnumber the others. That is serious. And for you that could be serious business. If you need to, get fit yourself. If you are fit then find a niche you can flourish in: yoga, cycling, dancing, running, callisthenics, any one. Learn all you can and grow. Focus on being supportive, present and committed to your clients. They can get info and routines in books, on websites and on YouTube but there is just one you.
7. Content writing/editing

Anybody (literate, healthy and willing) can write, but not everyone can write to specifications under deadlines. If you can, then you are in. Spend some time to study the market. Follow handles that talk about freelance writing. (check @TiceWrites out). Read job boards. Advertise. Know the going rates and aim for better. Network. Get help: proofreader, editor, agent. Be patient. Start from topics you are passionate/ knowledgeable about . Read the kind of work you want to write. Bring home the money, honey.

8. Child minding/Baby-sitting

Self-descriptive. But you don’t have to stay basic. Add activities. Add classes. Add trips to local parks and libraries. As outdoor exercises.Be creative. Be fun. And watch parents seek you out all day long.

So there they are, the inconclusive list of businesses you can start free. Capitalise on your knowledge, skills, passion and networks. Starts small but dream big. Keep learning. And watch your credit alerts ring all day like a ticking clock.

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Thank you for reading this. Please follow the blog to get our content directly in your inbox. Give me a follow on Twitter @StNaija . Advertise your businesses here (limited free banner space available, send an email). Let me know if you have tried any of this in the comments. And please share.

Stay winning ✌🏾

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How To Teach Your Dog New Tricks

Teaching your dog new tricks is a great way to bond with your dog. It is also helps you understand each other and get the behaviour you desire from your pet. Teaching your dog new tricks can also provide entertainment,make friends and win prizes and fame.
It can also be very rewarding, satisfying and fun, helping you relax or have a good laugh every now and then.
To teach your dog a new trick you will need to be committed and focused, here are some tips to help you succeed.

Start Early, The Younger The Dog, The Better The Results

Everyone knows you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but many people wait too long to begin teaching their dogs. As soon as your dog has had a health check and settled in, teaching should begin.

Teaching your dog tricks will need patience and commitment from you. You should devote some time for it every day and make each teaching session short. Ideally, fifteen minutes or less. Don’t despair of your dog seems to be more interested in playing that the trick you are teaching. Be firm and focused. Learn to pay attention to your dog so you can sense tiredness, hunger or boredom.

Don’t push or punish when things aren’t going as fast as you thought they would. Be kind and patient, ensure teaching begins as early in your dog’s life as possible.

Start Easy, When Teaching Your Dog New Tricks, Begin From The Basics

Some folks want to teach their dogs to fetch, walk on hind legs and say good morning on the first day. Teaching dog’s new tricks doesn’t work that way. You begin from the easiest tricks and gradually work your way up.

There are many tricks your dog can learn. Some are simpler than others; begin with the easy ones.

To begin, you need a training plan and some treats. Your training plan will spell out what you want your dog to learn, what time the teaching nah session is scheduled for and the treats your dog will receive. Every time your dog does a trick successfully, you reward them with a treat. At first, you might reward the smallest attempts but with time you demand more from your pet. Ensure that you have treats your dog actually likes for the teaching session. Give treats generously when your dog learns a new trick

The first trick you might want to teach your dog is to come when their name is called. Usually, calling them by name repeatedly before feeds gets them to know the name is theirs and to respond when called.

Teaching your dogs new tricks should be a gradual process. Don’t proceed to more complex tricks until the easier ones have been mastered. It is nice to have a plan or scheduled where you lost the tricks you want your dog to learn and the approximate time those lessons might take. This will keep you focused on teaching. It will also help you assess the progress you are making. You can also note quickly the tricks your dog has a natural aptitude for and design more like that.

Keep Learning About Your Dog And How Best To Train Them

There are hundreds of different dog breeds, all with unique strengths and differences. To get the best out o teacher nah your dog tricks you need to know your dog. Research as much as you can about your breeds strengths. What was the dog bred to do? What are the tricks that come to them naturally? How long does it take for them to learn new tricks on the average?

You should also pay attention to your dog. What can they do? What do they like most? What treats get them excited?
Knowledge is power. The more you know about your dog the easier it will be to design an informed training plan. A training plan that embraces their strengths and personality, one that will work.

 

Enjoy The Process Of Teaching Your Dog New Tricks

Teaching your new dog tricks will take time, patience and lots of energy. You will need to keep at it even when the results aren’t as great as you hoped they would be. To stay on track with the plan you have to make the process fun for you as well.

Choose an environment for training that works for you and your dog. Make sure it is clean and safe. If you can make it a cosy, pretty and/or spacious, that will be helpful too.

Make sure you are well hydrated and not hungry, tired or irritated during training time. It helps to have rested before time. Have your favourite music playing to set the tone and boost your mood (not too loud though, so your pet doesn’t get irritated and so your commands can clearly be heard).

Dress comfortably, preferably in exercise wear that allows you to move, run and sweat.
Make the training time as enjoyable as possible for you and your dog. That way it won’t be a burden but a fun bonding learning experience that you both look forward to.

Teaching your dog new tricks is a rewarding experience that should help you and your dog bond and have a great time. It won’t happen without your committed investment of time, effort and treats. To optimise the experience start early and easy, gradually increasing the scope of tricks. Knowing your dog’s breed, it’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as your dog’s personality will help you know tricks your dog is naturally adapted to learn and most likely to excel at. The training process should be fun for you and your dog. Invest in a pleasant experience. Know that all dogs learn at their own pace. Some are faster or slower than others. Prepare, begin, commit and watch your dog excel. Commit to the process and you can enjoy a long happy time ahead with your smart,well-trained dog.

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Ten Times To Totally Write For Free (& A Million Not To)

Everyone knows I am a #NoFreeWriting Ambassador. I believe you should get paid for your work, your intellectual property, your blood and tears. It took a while for me to navigate the literary landscape and arrive at my current position. I don’t regret the days I wrote for free or was swindled of work but I like where I am now and I am not going back.

So why in the world am I still considering writing for free? It is wrong. It is exploitative. It is thoroughly discouraging the emergence of talent and the development of the craft. Yes it is, but sometimes writing for free can be a good thing. Here are ten occasions you should write for free and feel absolutely no guilt.

1. Your Private Diary/ Journal/Blog

Everything seems to be documented in the public domain these days with social media being the preferred means of sharing experiences, thoughts and feelings. Some things are however too controversial, painful, raw or private for the whole world to see. Writing in a journal or diary can help you:

gather your thoughts without any performance pressure

experiment with style and form

leave a record for yourself and posterity

dabble and brainstorm.

Whatever your reasons, this is one time where you should not feel guilty about time spent versus money-made. Who knows? Your journal could even be optioned and published someday.

2. Your Public Blog/Website/Project

It can be hard to churn out content data after day without any compensation or remuneration. All the hard work that goes into creating work just ignored like a kitten fart. But don’t despair. Writing for your personal blog might not pay immediately but it can be immensely rewarding. It can grow your readership and fans; help you understand your work better; serve as clips for future jobs; be a 24-hour advert to head hunters, agents, editors and publishers; and if you are lucky, advertisers who like what you do can support you. Then Boom! You are the next Linda Ikeji

3. For The Blogs Of Friends/Family

Good writing is hard. It is valuable: made from blood, sweat and tears. It can be frustrating to create without any tangible value received in return but writing for family and friends is different. Just the way you would share your food, home or money with them you can also gladly and proudly lend your words to boost their site or blog without any guilt. Think of it as having each other’s back. Hopefully, it will be a mutually beneficial experience where you get more readers, they get more traffic and everyone gains. Even if it doesn’t work that way, it will be another deposit in your love bank and writers need all the love they get.

4. For a Cause You Care About

Some of the most needy causes are some of the most overlooked. Editors will often commission features that have been flogged to death while important topics languish from neglect. That is where you come in. You can ride in on your white horse (or pink or green or black) and save the day. With your words you can help create awareness for important neglected topics like: mental health, autism, poverty, child’s rights, the environment, wild life and more. With your pen/pad/laptop you can save the world one piece/poem at a time. No one might pay you but that is what heroes love for. And writers are heroes. Yup, that is what you are.

5.For Church/Mosque/Shrine/Temple

If you have been saved, then the least you can do is to save someone else. If you belong to any place that provides nourishment and salvation, eternal life and peace then you shouldn’t let worldly things like money stop you from being a blessing. Many religious publications struggle to find good content. That content can be difference between who is reached and who is unreached. So the next time you come across a tweet asking for help that you give in this domain please give it a thought.

6. For a Fun Free Project You Believe in

Many people charge writers to submit; sell their work and don’t give them a penny back; rogues and robbers. That isn’t what I am talking about. I am talking about projects that collate writing by people you believe in, charities you support, topics that fascinate you or all three for that matter. Like the anthology call for writers of your demographic by that passionate broke editor that will edit you till you shine or that mad call for stories with sex in the air. Anything, quirky, genuine and fun that matters to you? Write for yourself, no one can afford you anyway.

7. For a Byline

A byline is a place that has published your work in the past. Now, you don’t need to have written for over a day to know that non-paying places outnumber the paying about 1000 to 1, and it gets worse if you write fiction, or poetry, or write from sub-Saharan Africa or are a new, unknown writer.The problem is, when a writing job — that scarce precious resource– does come, the first thing they will look at is your byline. Where have you been published before? Who else has liked your work? And believe it or not, something is (mostly) better than nothing. So when you have an offer to write for a place that will improve your writing credentials, consider it.

Side note: do this with an eye on the clock. Besides, you only need to do it once for it to count.

8. For Growth & Opportunity 

Every 1000 years (just kidding) there comes a chance to work with a talented editor, a gifted translator, a revered mentor, a dream team that will make you more than you could be on your own; but they have no money. They however value your work and want to make it the best it can be. Take it. Think of it as trade by batter or training or ‘getting your work out in the world’. Such opportunities are few in today’s world, recognize that and act accordingly.

9. When You Want To

You are a writer, a creator, a god. And it is the right of every god to do as they please (within limits).  So, if the fancy strikes you, to share your divinity with mortality, then by all means do so. Grace this world with your light and love and language. Bequeath it your goodness. Gift it your unique, inimitable voice. After all, time is running out and you only get one chance on this orb.

10. For eXpOSuRe

I don’t know where this word came from but I know exposure can make you fall ill and catch a cold (Saint face).

Anyway, this means writing for a publication/site/company/blog/individual that solicited your magic for a paying concern but somehow managed to ‘have no budget for writers’. Really? (Yes, dem pleeeeenty) I have said a lot about how I feel about this. In summary: giving your blood and sweat over to a merchant to hawk, profit and not pay you is a no; the promise that you will get eXpOSuRe is a scam. A gamble, that your name on their site will magically pay your rent or school fees or grocery bill. We all know that (almost) never happens. But if the spirit has spoken to you, the burning bush has called your name, you have seen the fleece and you think it is the right thing to do,or you believe the hype will be worth it, your gut says go, your head doesn’t say no; then flourish.

 

So there it is folks. All the reasons to sit over a blank page bleeding without a dime in sight. The one million reasons not to? Ah. You have to like this and share it and follow the blog so you don’t miss it when it is out. That is the currency here, beloved, you can call it SaintCoin.

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Thank you for reading this. Do you ever write for free? Did I miss anything? You are welcome to comment.

This blog is kept alive by your generous donations and tireless support.

Please do not hesitate to share this, reblog, part-post, excerpt and pass it along on Telegram/WhatsApp etc.

We value your input and presence. All this is wasted without you.

 

The Agbada That Shook The World

Some people say the Agbada only shook Lekki but I disagree.

Last weekend in a star-studded. celebrity-flooded wedding two Nollwood stars Banky W and Adesuwa tied the knot in a beautiful traditional marriage ceremony. Fans and friends were delighted and social media was filled with warm wishes for the two. One of the guests to the wedding was Ebuka Obi-Uchendo a writer, TV host, lawyer and compère; and he was the guest who wore The Agbada. Since then the Agbada has been called many names including AgbadaX, Ebuka’s Agbada and Agbada-Kimono. But more importantly it has brought a maelstrom of activity to both social and traditional media.

At first glance, it is hard to see what the rave is about, the garment was quite simple, not a glimmer of bling in sight, no flamboyant wings, no multicolour layers, no sequins or beads; but a combination of factors made this garment the talk of the world.

First of all, the AgbadaX was made from an exquisite fabric rumoured to have cost at least fifty thousand naira. It was a luxurious purple colour, reminiscent of royalty. To create a garment like that, the same fabric or something very close is necessary. Many wannabee owners of the AgbadaX are already trying to recreate the look without this vital component, the outcome? Disasters.

Secondly the AgbadaX was made by none other than the renowned fashion designer and trendsetter Ugo Monye. Sources say the AgbadaX was made for 280 thousand naira. Only. They also say Ugo has been making clothes for the very rich for close to two decades. It is clear that he brought his wealth of talent and experience into crafting this signature piece, anyone expecting similar results from a roadside tailor has booked a date with disappointment.

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Thirdly, the garment was worn by Ebuka, a tall, dark, fit, handsome man with celebrity status and over 200 thousand Twitter followers. In a word, carriage, Ebuka brought carriage to the AgbadaX and transformed the garment from being just another asoebi to a true work of art.

And of course there were other factors, the excellent photograph by the yet unknown photographer who got just the right shit at just the right angle and  whose work has since gone viral, the dry cleaner( some one said the ironing was done in Malaysia 😂), and the Twitter influencers, On-Air-Personalities, Vloggers and Bloggers who have kept the hype raging for days. So many different factors coming together to create an effect that will not be duplicated soon.

In the wake of this iconic garment, there have sprung a flurry of responses, actions and reactions:

Ugo Monye’s Instagram followers hip has gone from four thousand to twenty-two thousand overnight.

A certain Yinka, a tailor has promised his client he can reproduce the garment. And bets are already being cast about the outcome.

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A colleague of Ugo Monye’s, Seyi Vodi has advised against any form of copying or reproduction of the iconic piece calling it a “mind blowing piece of art.”

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A feminist blogger has accused Ebuka of employing male privilege, trying to outshine the groom and some other patriarchy related offences.

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A failed attempt at recreating the garment has already been posted and was thoroughly lambasted on Twitter.

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The Agbada already has a Twitter handle and can be reached @EbukasAgbada

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One can’t help but wonder what will happen next on the AgbadaX Diary but one thing is for sure, this is one Agbada that won’t be forgotten in a while.

Five Things I Bet You Didn’t Know You Could Do In Lagos

The Lagos is a cliche, a concrete jungle, overpopulated with people busy as bees, working their socks off, queuing for BRTs and sleeping in traffic. But that’s not all true. I may understand if you have that view, but I am here to correct the impression. Lagos is home to some of the most fun loving people on the planet, from small gatherings of friends in bars and restaurants, to large gatherings in wedding receptions, clubs and street themed parties, just because we can, you can see the beaming smiles and hear roaring laughter of a people who know how to actively seek and create fun. While you may be familiar with some of the fun things into do around the city, it could get boring eventually when it gets quite repetitive. How about these fun things you could do if you are tired of cinema going, paintballing, owambe parties, clubbing, and arcade gaming with the friends, park walking or mall hopping.
Here are some of the amazing fun things to do in Lagos that are different from the regular. If you have grown bored of your hangout spots in Lagos and you want to dive into a new set of adventure, you should absolutely try these out.

Kayak across the Lagoon
This activity which involves propelling oneself in a small narrow boat is increasingly becoming popular in Lagos where people book in groups or individually to experience the thrill of becoming one with the water craft and paddling across the Lagoon from one end to the other. Participants are advised to have medium to advanced swimming skills but there are life guards on hand to keep the fun seekers safe.
Surf Like a Pro
Yes, you too can be part of the hippie, pop culture inspiring set of cool kids who are part time dare devils of the sea. The GP Surfing School in Tarkwa Bay offers surfing lessons for people looking to learn to surf the waves. With each session cost N7000, we aren’t quite sure how many sessions it would require before you start riding the waves, but hopefully if you are a fast learner you could become a god of the seas pretty soon.
See an Outdoor Movie
I don’t know about you, but going to the mall for movies is one of the most cliché of fun things to do in Lagos. But when you switch the presentation, it doesn’t sound as boring as it sounds. This is pretty much where groups like MovieNic and Secret Cinema come in. A picnic is thrown into the mix as well which makes it an ideal setting for a cozy, romantic outing. If the movie doesn’t do much for you, you can look at the stars and toe wrestle with your partner. If you are particularly keen on finding new fun places on Lagos Mainland, this is one you should try out.
Explore Nature
Don’t Laugh. Lagos isn’t all about being the home to financial institutions and big corporate buildings and sprawling bridges. The Lekki Conservation center is a 78 hectare reserved area of forest along with animals who have made it its natural home. With it, Eco-tourists and lovers of nature have certainly found a place to call their own in Lagos where they can watch birds, enjoy the lush green vegetation of the conservation center
Join a Cycling Club
If you are looking for a recreational place in Lagos, this is going to be great for you especially as it combines the outdoors, sporting activity and social bonding. Cyclotron is a cycling club based in Lagos that aims to promote cycling as a recreational activity and they are open to receiving new members at all times. They have designated routes where they cycle and they help members with tips on how to keep their bikes in the best conditions possible, as well as how to engage with other motorists and pedestrians using the cycling routes as well.
Don’t let this be another moment where you wonder – what are the things to do in Lagos this weekend? Explore these exciting new places to visit in Lagos, Nigeria. Free safety tip, whatever fun thing you are doing, if you are out late and you are struggling to get a ride home, it is always better to check yourself into a nearby hotel room and stay in till morning. Cheap hotel accommodations in Lagos are easy to come by and there would be certainly one near or around you at every point in time. All you have to do is search, find, choose, book and stay.