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What Will Christmas Be Like This Year?

By Dennis Da-ala Mirilla 13 December 2020   |   11:00 am

A concert | Photo Pinterest

Though it has been months since the government cutback regulations put in place to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus, Lagos is still reeling from the harsh effects of the days when being outside was a luxury. In December last year, Christmas hit songs had taken over airwaves and it was aptly tagged “Detty December,” an idea that launched a thousand pieces on both the gossip blogs and high-end publications alike about how to navigate the best December in Lagos. IJGBs were already flooded the city, hopping from one spot to the other and bombarding the Instagram comment section with fire emojis. But with a social life still struggling to survive, it will be a long shot, almost wishful thinking that Christmas be in Lagos this year what it once was.

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No In-Person Concerts

One of the forces propelling the vibrant Christmas spirit that has imbued Lagos before now are the countless live music events by the celebrities. At this time last year, everybody from Tiwa Savage to Davido has booked halls at EKO Hotel and rolled out lists of artists to perform which last year included both Jidenna and Cardi B. With the coronavirus still must alive in the city, musicians have taken to Instagram Live to perform making it almost impossible for there to be live in-person shows this year.

Zainab Balogun plays Ope, an IJGB in Royal Hibsicus

IJGB won’t Be Visiting This Year

I-Just-Got-Back (IJGB) – Nigerians based outside the country- usually return for the festivities and get reacquainted with old friends and family members alike for Christmas. That would not be feasible this year, at least not like it used to be. With countries in Europe and America getting into the second surge of coronavirus pandemic, travelling has once again be restricted to and from countries that are most affected. Government official are rolling out drastic measures to curtail the spread of the virus and keep their country safe. This has affected many that would have returned to Nigeria for the holiday.

There Just Isn’t The Money

For many Nigerians who live in Nigeria, the ripple effects of the days locked in their homes or working from home isn’t over. During the lockdown, many companies had to slash salaries or retrench staffers, forcing Nigerians to take deep dives into their savings to get ends meet. But with the rising costs of basic necessities, it was almost impossible to afford the level of comfort that they had before the pandemic hit. Months after the lockdown, prices in goods and services are still rising and the economy is barely stable. Nigerians are channelling their resources into more sustainable purposes and for many, there is just little or nothing left for a good Christmas splurge.

The EndSARS Movement 

The wounds from the events at the Lekki tollgate during the EndSARS protests are still very fresh in the country’s consciousness. Many Nigerians both home and abroad haven’t found any form of closure about it, which led to Nigerians taking COVID-19 palliatives in warehouses all over the country. This has drastically affected the Christmas mood. Simply put; there is so much anger in the country and there isn’t much to celebrate.

A Bloody Year

2020 has been for many people, both Nigerians and others a bloody year, with many families losing loved ones from the COVID-19 outbreak. The world has not seen this many people in mourning in a long time. For many, they have had little or nothing to celebrate this year and it doesn’t seem like a time to put on a pretty dress and head out to the club.

Would 2021 be any good? It might be too soon to answer that question, which has been on the minds of many. But all we can do at the moment is hope for something better come 2021.

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