The Difference Between Paying For Shit And Paying To Shit

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WARNING: This article talks about shit a lot. Do not read if you do not like shitty stories…I mean stories about shit.

shit editedsAnyone that knows me knows that I do not eat anything the morning before a presentation or speech. I just don’t. The reason is because I am nervous and somehow that nervousness creates chemicals in my stomach that transforms any trace of food in there to shit. Thus giving me the crazy urge to want to shit while presenting…

But several years ago, I broke that rule. I was hungry, so hungry I ate a little and proceeded down Badagry road. My destination..Corona Secondary School to give a presentation at former school. I knew something was wrong because the first thing I asked for when I got to school was for the toilet. I sat at the toilet but nothing came out…no shit. Weird…I was nervous, and I had food in my stomach but still no shit.

Little did I know that the chemical process going on in my stomach had been delayed slightly. Anyway I proceeded to give my presentation and I guess the adrenalin in my body had somehow suppressed the urge to shit, so I rocked the presentation (needs to be verified).

Students were crying, teachers were laughing, it was beautiful (I just don’t have picture evidence). I greeted my former teachers, the students and the laboratory animals that were about to be dissected and jumped into the car. As soon as I entered, I felt a sudden urge to shit. But I felt I could hold it, and so I did, but then after about 20 minutes or so on the road, it hit me…I had to shit or else I will shit all over myself. I felt like my behind was about to explode. The closest place we could stop at was one Secondary School along Badagary express way that I will not mention their name although it rhymes with E jar knicking.

So we got there, and I told the security guards that I had to shit or else I would die … which they obviously did not want, so they pointed me to the closest toilet. I ran inside what seemed to be like an uncompleted building and looked for the toilet, but all I saw was a black void and bucket of water. I put my behind over the black void but nothing came out … I tried again but nothing …it was as if the shit had disappeared. But i personally think my shit was running away from the toilet! The shit in my stomach must have been like “I know I am shit but there is no way you are pooping me into that black nasty toilet void.” Even my shit knew how dirty the toilet was!

I went back into the car (this is a true story o) and I had no urge to shit again. The toilet had scared my shit shitless.

Roll forward to a few years later, and I am doing a book reading at Patabah Bookstore in Surulere for my book How Stupidity Saved My Life. Remember my shitting problem? Well it hits me again … I have to shit but not as intense as the Badagry story. I walk jog run hop to the toilet. For a quick background, I am in the Surulere mall so I am headed to the public toilets in the mall. As I am about to enter the toilet I see what appears to be a security stand and receipt book. I double back mentally but the shit keeps moving forward.

I start to walk past them when I hear “Oga it is N20.00” I am like 20 what? then I hear it again “N20 to use the toilet.” I am like what! Am I dreaming. I never knew you had to pay to shit in Nigeria. But I am in no position to argue. I pull out a N500 bill and tell them I will collect my change after as I rush into the toilet.

And when I enter, it is like paradise….clean…fresh…like Sheraton Hotel but in the 80s. The toilet rolls were full and soft and the whole atmosphere…nice. Not like a Dubai seven star hotel nice, but gosh-this-is-good-for-a-mall nice. I proceeded to have one of my best shits I had ever had in my life a public place. And that is the difference between paying for shit and paying to shit.

For years Nigerians have been paying for shit, shitty roads, shitty electricity, shitty phone service (remember NITEL) and shitty toilets. Things barely worked in that system because it was run by the government.

But now things have slowly started changing, we are no longer paying for shit we are paying to shit. Here’s what I mean…

If you want to make a phone call in Nigeria today you typically have to load a recharge card before you can call. If you want to drive down the quite in my opinion awesome lekki-ikoyi toll bridge with working CCTVs and security you have to pay a toll. If you want to enjoy the fine amenities at the MMA2 airport in Lagos, you have to pay an additional fee hidden in the ticket price. In all three cases, it is no longer the government running things, the private firms have come and are now charging … but things are better.

And because of that Nigerians are paying. But like me at the Surulere Mall toilet we are at first reluctant … hesitant. But once we see the value in the services provided we would pay and because we pay the toilets/services are better. And this causes a demand and supply cycle. And that cycle is the secret to Economic growth … paying to shit and getting cleaner and better toilets in return.

twitterWritten By Okechukwu Ofili of
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Words by Okechukwu Ofili of
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41 comments on “The Difference Between Paying For Shit And Paying To Shit

  1. O lawd, these your stories. I laughed so hard till shit caught me.

    You make a very good point. Back in my college days, I had to take a 12 hour ride from Jos to Lagos for School. Half way into the trip at Okene, Kogi State, there was a rest stop consisting of an entire building with bathrooms and toilets. It was 10 naira for the toilet and 20 naira for bathrooms.

    They were clean and well taken care of. That was money well spent, and a huge relief from doing your business in a bush, while watching out for reptiles and insects that were trying to get into private places.

    You are correct in saying that the value of the service provided, makes the payment worth it. I hope services like this become mainstream and diversified to other areas.
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  2. Victorr on said:

    This is a shitty story full of shit but interesting and real as shit! We’re all full of shit, only that the shit is different, shits have class too! This is a piece is full of shit – 32 mentions of shit!

  3. Ofili, I love your articles. Gosh!!! This one is amazing, especially the twist. Wasn’t expecting a moral at the end of it o. Was just laffing for comic relief and then BAM!!! The shit hit me. Anyway, thank God its free…abi is there a hidden charge somewhere *puts on glasses*
    Edima Inwang latest post is New wine in old wine skinMy Profile

  4. Nnedimma on said:

    The mall toilet thing makes me laugh everytime… Like “na wa o”. But it works so, I can’t complain. #Paytoshit.

  5. May we continue to pay to shit, Amen! Your post reminded me that for 3 years in my life *shout out to FGGC Bida* I had to shit in the bush cos the toilets were not functional and even if they were, overcrowding would have made them a hotbed for infection. Now I wonder how people like me have refused to rise up and improve our educational system. Serious food for thought for me tonight.

  6. Adelowo Oreoluwa on said:

    You were so real! That made it more interesting, buh really they are solving a problem, a problem of “shit” they are meeting Demand self! ………love it!

  7. Ayotunde on said:

    Ofili, i read ur book. How Intelligence kills, beleive me am amaze to know an ajebo like you is concerned with Nigeria’s problem, don’t dare argue you are not, u schooled at corona and in the US, that’s pretty expensive. My personal beef with your book. I believe Nigerians are not genetically programmed to take shit, so preaching it is like convincing us that contraband goods are sometimes useful. Hope you aren’t trying to intimidate me and others with your travellings, just kidding it’s quite informative. I do wish ofili give me a suprise calls, it will be indeed a great suprise 08167551772.

    • Ofili
      Ofili on said:

      gotcha…so you think once you land USA it is enjoyment. Interesting. Anyway, nothing wrong with enjoying what you can enjoy when it is available.

  8. On point this time too. I had this similar shitty experience, and came away with nuggets of wisdom. You Pay For Shit If You Will Shit Right.

  9. Tony on said:

    quality shit will pop out if u have to pay to shit, but wen shitting becomes free, the shit looses its value; it will either not pop out or the quality of d shit that pops out will be low. great lesson for Nigeria; Privatization, deregulation and complete removal of subsidy is d way to go.

  10. okechukwu ofili..this is the first time i am going to comment on your articles and I read them all…I had a shitty day at work and then came your article about shit and …the rest is history, I am taking a shit… oh well, lovely article, the lessons behind your articles, do make loads of sense and I still believe our generation can and will change Nigeria. thumps up everyone…

  11. Deji on said:

    EWWWWWW!! yuck! Dude! that was too vivid! gosh! censor board please!

    I agree with Ayotunde, you are such an Ajebutter! but its a good thing…

  12. Ofili,

    This is the first time I actually laughed out loud in one of your posts. (I smile at the others)

    Love this article. One heck of a wake up call.

    #PayToShit is real…..

    Keep u the work

  13. Haha. Funny!
    It’s best we pay to shit cus Govt subsidized sh*t is actually expensive shit in the long run.
    Like your ability to ‘see’ things in thinz.

  14. Ayotunde on said:

    if it’s not a greener pasture as u claimed why go there. Who’s fooling who. After reading How Intelligence Kills, i was so bothered, curious or anxious speaking to u, i wish there was a medium.

  15. VICTOR CHIJIOKE on said:

    Hilarious, inspiring n educating I must say. Bless you for dis piece. If we can be offered excellent services in naija, we’ll pay without complaining.

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