Like many researchers, Andrew Ejike gets dressed and leaves his home in Enugu town in the afternoon. A computer laptop bag, which he carries like a suitcase, indicates that he is going to the workplace. If he returns home in the evening, his neighbours often ask:”How was work today?” And he answers by saying,”Work was fine”.
Interestingly, Ejike does not have work, and certainly does not have a formal employment. He is unemployed.
However he’s’created’ a’job’ for himself. He is, more or less, a ‘professional’ punter. Sports betting is exactly what Ejike does and if he leaves ‘work’ each morning on working days, the’workplace’ that he goes is actually any sports bar about town.
On getting into the bar, Ejike would install his laptop, connect to the Internet using a mobile device, open the web site of any of those cellular sports betting companies and begin working on forecasts, or permutations, in order to think of the stakes he’d place to the day.
A bachelor’s degree holder in Estate Management in a national university, Ejike was sustaining himself and his young family with proceeds from sports gambling after failing to secure a stable occupation since he graduated more than ten years ago.
In a chat with our correspondent, Ejike clarified he lost two previous jobs after the companies that he was working for shut down.
“The cover from the occupations was not much anyway but I think there’s dignity in labor. I was also hoping that over the line I would get something larger and more secure. But I could not even hold on to those jobs since the firms closed down and nothing better came along,” he said.
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