Friday, June 3, 2016

Naija Americans on Wikipedia

Did  you know that there is a page on Wikipedia on Nigerian Americans? Yes o my people... Wikipedia has recognized the large population of Nigerians in the United States and someone crated a page. It might have been a Nigerian. Wikipedia is an open source, after all.  That point aside, the page seems pretty interesting and accurate.

Some interesting info from the page is:

1. As of 2012, there were 277,631 Nigerians in the United States; of those, 116,807 were born in Nigeria. As of 2013, there were 299,310 Nigerian Americans. Either there was a lot of immigration or Naija people been popping out a lot of babies between 2012 and 2013!

2. "Based on DNA studies, an estimated 80 percent of African Americans (about 35 million) could have some Igbo or Hausa ancestry. Therefore, 60 percent of them, according to historian Douglas B. Chambers, could have at least one Igbo ancestor."  So for those Afrocentric African Americans who love studying the Zulu kings of South Africa, the Asante of Ghana, Swahili language of East Africa, and ancient Egyptians, hoping to find a connection to their roots, many of them need look no further than good ol' Nigeria, haha!

3. US cities/areas with the highest Nigerian populations are:
  • Washington DC/Maryland/Baltimore area
  • New York City
  • Houston, Texas and Harris County area
  • Atlanta, Georgia and other suburbs in Georgia
  • New Jersey
  • Chicago, Illinois and surrounding areas
  • Los Angeles, California and suburbs
  • Columbus, Ohio and Hamilton and Montgomery counties in Ohio
  • Detroit metro area in Michigan
  • Virginia: Fairfax, Prince William and Loudoun  counties
I found it interesting that the Detroit area was on the list, because that's where I live. I have a saying. "In the Michigan Nigerian community, there's only one degree of separation between you and another person." Meaning, if you don't know someone, it's guaranteed that someone you know knows them, or a family member of theirs.

 Prime example: I met this guy at a party back in my college days. We danced, he asked for my number, I gave it to him. I really didn't think anything of it. In the days that followed, the guy began disturbing me via text message and call. Ah, ah, which kin wahala be dis? I really wasn't into him, so after trying to be nice, I started ignoring him.

A few weeks later, guess who my cousin brings to my house? The same guy I've been avoiding! I didn't know that they knew each other. The two of them were heading to some event and my cousin decided to stop by just to say hi. When I see the guy walk in I wanted to disappear into thin air, but no such luck. My dad, ever the cheerful host, welcomed them in and I had to do the customary Naija serving of drinks and snacks to visitors, all while thinking to myself, "Is this really happening to me?"

As they were leaving, my dad started walking my cousin to his car; the guy lingered behind and was able to corner me and ask me why I hadn't been replying his message or picking his calls. It  was so awkward. I had no real answer except to give him a blank look. Hahaha! After that encounter though, he got the message and left me alone.

Going back to the list of US areas with Nigerian populations, I have been to all of these areas visiting Nigerian friends, family, or attending a Nigerian event.

I think it's cool that we are beginning to have documented information about Nigerians is America. We're definitely being noticed, and mostly for good things, like education, culture, and family values. 

Check out the Wikipedia page to read more about Nigerians in America.

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