Christmas is gradually rolling in for Christians around the world including those in Nigeria to join in the celebration of the annual festival commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ.
It is well known that Christmas is one of the biggest celebrations for the people belonging to the Christian Faith.
In as much as Christians and even people of other faiths look forward to this festival, there is a group of Nigerians who though are Christians but had in the last ten years or more been unable to partake in the glorious festival due to the predicaments they found themselves courtesy of mis-governance by the subsequent governments that the country had produced within the period.
This group of people who can be found in the different sectors of the country’s economy, particularly the government workers who have retired or forced to retire are also found in the aviation sector.
The pathetic case of the over four thousand former workers of the defunct Nigeria Airways is a typical example of those the government and the country they served had denied the rights to celebrate Christmas with members of their families for years as the past governments refused to pay them their entitlements after the liquidation of the then national carrier.
Many of the workers were forced into abject poverty with many of them sent to their early graves due to lack of funds to take care of their health issues while those still living have been doing so with their caps at hand begging for food.
To the former Nigeria Airways workers, Christmas suddenly became an impossible festival for them and their families to celebrate even as the government and the country they laboured for withheld their entitlements for years.
This pathetic situation did not leave out the Muslim workers of the defunct carrier who suffered similar experience like their Christian colleagues as they were denied the right to celebrate Sallah the way they should.
According to a popular biblical phrase which says though ‘tears may last for a night, Joy comes in the morning’, respite has finally come the way of the long abandoned workers, as both Christians and Muslims will have the opportunity of joining their families to celebrate this Christmas and the next Sallah as they used to do before their former place of work was shut down.
Obviously, the workers will never forget the government of President Muhammadu Buhari and the resilience of the minister of state for aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika for choosing not to follow the footsteps of his predecessors by approving the payment of the N45 billion entitlements though in two installments.
While congratulating those still living and were able to reap the fruit of their labour unlike the unlucky ones who could not survive the torture and injustice meted to them by the government, it is however necessary for the former workers to be prudent with their entitlements.
Money as people say is like a visitor which comes and goes at will, therefore, the Nigeria Airways workers should learn to be frugal and not get carried away by the spur of the moment.
Obviously, at this point in time, many people or friends they have not seen for years will start showing up now that they have heard that government is now paying them. Besides, people with genuine and fake interest will come pretending to introduce different business ideas to them with the main purpose of defrauding them.
They should be wise and seek help from financial experts including banks on how to manage their fortunes to avoid squandering their entitlements.
The need for the workers to be prudent becomes pertinent because this is the only opportunity many of them have to receive a lump some amount as many of them are too old that they can no longer be employed for continuous sustenance.
As expected, temptations are bound to come their ways in forms of what to buy and other frivolous items being dangled before them; they should think of where they are coming from, the long years of suffering which had claimed lives of many of their colleagues and how far they can go.
While they are celebrating the coming Christmas and next Sallah festivals with their loved ones, the former workers should invest wisely and avoid spending loosely to enable them enjoy the fruit of their labour within the little time they are left with on this planet earth.