Former Transportation Minister Rotimi Amaechi has explained why he did not support the emigration of Nigerians, colloquially referred to as “Japa.”
Amaechi stated on the Arise Television program on Saturday that “Japa” could only secure an individual a 9-to-5 job (a 9-to-5 job typically refers to a work arrangement in which employees report to the office at 9 a.m. and depart at 5 p.m.). These positions primarily require five days of office labor per week.
He argued that remaining in Nigeria could lead to political office and advised the country’s youth to make every effort to attain a position of decision-making authority, particularly about the Nigerian economy.
The former governor of Rivers State stated, "Throughout my career, I have consistently dissuaded individuals from attempting to depart from the nation. I assert that working from 9 to 5 is the best job. Our opportunities in Nigeria may not be available to you. One day, you might realize you already serve as a governor or minister. It occurs by chance.
“If you seek opportunity, remain in Nigeria; however, if you seek security, a 9-to-5 job, or anything else, feel free to depart the country.”
Additionally, Amaechi asserted that his reverence for God distinguishes him from the nation’s other elites and legislators.
"One notable distinction between myself and most Nigerian elites is that I candidly and unknowingly express my views. Even if you were to place a gun in my head, I would still tell the truth because that is how God raised me. It has always been my conviction that my fear of God is the reason I have developed that character. I have always held the conviction that to attain paradise, it is imperative to be truthful both with one another and with oneself.
“When you are in the wrong, you apologize.” Sincerely, I have chosen to live my existence. Believably, if diplomacy requires me to be politically correct, I will abstain from giving a lie. “Rather than lying, the best or worst you can hope for from me at that precise moment is to leave that location,” he emphasized.
When queried regarding his political trajectory, Amaechi declined to provide an answer.
Amaechi assumed the position of Minister of Transportation for Nigeria during the tenure of former President Muhammadu Buhari from 2015 to 2022. Bola Tinubu, who ultimately won the presidential election, defeated him in the presidential primary of the governing All Progressives Congress, to which he subsequently tendered his resignation.