Diary of an Illegal Immigrant in Malaysia{Betrayal, Love, Luck}

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I have always wanted to travel overseas for my University education. Even when I was younger, I used to tell me dad that I would like to study Abroad for my University. As time went on, my disturbed my dad about it which caused him to make me a promise that my post graduate would be done abroad.

Years later, I got admission into the university. Life was so sweet and great with me, and having a nice roommate, oliseh was also awesome. Things were going on fine, not until second semester of my 100level came, Oliseh relocated to Malaysia to continue his education. I didn’t know how he said his dad was able to raise money for him and he travelled to Malaysia. But we still maintained contacts. We chatted regularly on facebook and calls. He would tell me how beautiful life is in Malaysia and how I would enjoy life to the fullest if I come. He often sends me photos of that place.

A year later, during the Christmas period, Oliseh landed into Nigeria. He came in with a brand new Prado jeep. He got me cloths, accessories and so many things that I began wondering how he got all the money within a space of one year he travelled to Malaysia. Na so oliseh gist me ooo. He said he was a student and also a worker. He goes to classes for 5 hours and 6 hours for work. “But na which kind work this guy dey do wey just give am dis kind money,” I wondered within myself. Because one of my uncle who works in one of the new generational banks and collects a salary of N120,000 can’t even afford a second hand car worth N1.5million talk more of a second hand Prado jeep.

Oliseh told me he was into a lucrative computer business, importing goods into Malaysia and selling to the citizens. “Hope say Yahoo or Yahoo plus no dey,” I asked, just to be sure.

“Ah ahnnnn. Wetin you dey talk sef. I no dey do yahoo nah. Me nah pure business man ooo.” He told me there was money, plenty of it to be made in that country Malaysia. That I can even clock $1million within my first 6 months. Na so I believe this guy. I was happy for me. He even promised to help me with my papers when I graduate so I can come over. Na so me happy oooo sey I go soon go join my guy for Malaysia. The way he talked about the country, I was almost believing that people can even pluck money from trees in that country.

Before my guy Oliseh went back to Malaysia, he gave me some money and told me when am ready to come I should inform him so he can help me with my papers. After Oliseh left, it just looked as if I was no longer myself anymore. All my thoughts, dreams, visions were all directed to Malaysia. When I have any dream, I see myself in Malaysia. If I wake up, it looks as if I woke up in Malaysia. I eat, it looks as if am eating Malaysian food. I walk out of my house, it will look as if I walked into Malaysia. When I look at people, my parents and siblings around me, it will look as if am looking at Malaysians. Up to the extent that when I drink water, I assumes that’s water from Malaysia. When I even look up to the skies, I will sea Malaysia boldly written up there. Everything I see, do, looks Malaysia to me. I just want to be in Malaysia as soon as possible. My mind was no longer settled, even in my academics. It looks as if Malaysia was calling.

I told my dad that I was no longer interested in going to school in Nigeria anymore, that I would love to go to Malaysia to start afresh. My dad laughed as if I was joking. But he realized I wasn’t when I came back home from school a particular weekend. I refused going back to school. I told my parents that I was no longer going to school in Nigeria again. That they should get me a Malaysian visa, that my friend over there would help me so I could go there to school. Na so my papa begin para oooo. My mom thought I had been bewitched, that her enemies had gotten her through me. She even went as far as inviting some pastors to the house. Me sef no bother. Each time I hear or see some of them pray, it looks as if am seeing them praying that God should change the mind of my parents to sponsor my trip to Malaysia to join my boy Oliseh. My dad said he wasn’t going to sponsor me for that kind of trip, that I should finish up my bachelor’s degree first then when it comes for my post graduate, he can sponsor me to anywhere. But I no gree. My mom begged, pleaded for me to go back to school. At a time they even suggested I went for mental/ psychological assessment to check if I was in my right senses. It took the intervention of so many family members, family friends, so many pleas and my father’s refusal to sponsor that trip that I finally decided to go back to school after over a month staying at home due to my stubbornness that I wanted to travel to Malaysia. Thank the merciful God that I didn’t carry any course or had any academic problems that semester.

After my 200level semester examinations, we went for 2 months break. When the school resumed, another 2 of my friends had joined Oliseh in Malaysia. Infact I began to hear so many tales of Malaysia again. May people travelling to that country. It seems as if many Nigerians are falling into that country. It was a pity that I lost contact with my friend, oliseh. I didn’t know what happened. I just woke up one morning and discovered his facbook account was no longer active. Every means of contacting Oliseh was no longer active any more. For good one month, I was not myself. It looked as if I had lost a big treasure. It looked as if I had lost my helper, the one who would lift me up in Malaysia, and I blamed it on my family. It was pretty difficult for me moving forward but I finally did hoping that one day I would hear from him again.

Second semester 400level, I just returned from lecture this beautiful afternoon when I checked my facebook and discovered I had a message. I checked it and it was a classmate of mine, Barnabas who was in the same department with me. It was a long time since we saw last. I thought he dropped out of school, not until he started gisting me that he dropped out of school and moved to Malaysia. He said he was right in Malaysia chatting with me and that month would make it 6months he arrived Malaysia. Immediately I heard “Malaysia,” na so my adrenaline pumped up. It looked as if I experienced an electric transfer power. I was so happy. I had lost oliseh, it seems God has sent another person from Malaysia that would help me come over there. We began chatting. He started gingering me on coming to Malaysia. I couldn’t concentrate on my final exams anymore. Since my dad said he would sponsor me for my post graduate program in Malaysia, and I was almost finishing my first degree, I thought it was the proper time to start working on my Malaysian visa. I began disturbing my dad about Malaysia. My dad told me to finish up my final exams first, go for my NYSC and we would start working on my post graduate program. Infact he suggested me going to Canada for my Master degree. With what my dad said, I began thinking he was deceiving and scamming my conscience. Because he had promised that after my first degree, I would leave for abroad immediately since one doesn’t need NYSC certificate to be admitted for master’s degree abroad. But he was of the opinion that I should do my NYSC first since I would still be coming back to Nigeria to work. But I no gree ooo. “This man wan play me again,” I thought to myself. Abi him no wan sponsor me again! My dad said he doesn’t have much money to sponsor me. Then I began asking myself, if he was not sponsoring now, when will he do! Maybe when I am married and already have my money. Though I saw dad’s point because we were yet to complete our house. My dad was hoping to complete it, then we move in and he also wants to get a car which would aid his movement and business. And within a space of a year before I finish my NYSC, everything would be ready and I can travel. But I no wan hear that one.

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Obinwanne Umunna
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