Nigerians in South Africa aren’t here to ruin, steal or plunge resources – Darlington Steve

Nigerians in South Africa aren’t here to ruin, steal or plunge resources – Darlington Steve

The issue of immigrants and expatriates is a very sensitive topic to South Africa.

The state and many citizens view migrants as undesirable simply because of their national origins. As a result, migrant entrepreneurs are unable to fully utilize their entrepreneurial skills, experience, grow their business and thus contribute to the economy in an optimal fashion.

Nigerians in South Africa contribute towards nation-building, enhancing social cohesion by bringing more diversity to the country.

We chat to Darlington Steve, a Nigerian Professional living in South Africa.

1. Who is Darlington Steve?

He is a very reserved man contrary to popular belief! Darlington Steve is a God fearing man, a father, a visionary, a businessman, an entrepreneur, a disruptor and a trendsetter who isn’t afraid to break out of the norm.
Too many people have settled for a life that could be so much more and I want to change that mindset. I have a powerful dream that Africa will rise beyond what it is now and the whole world’s eyes will be on it, though a lot of work has to be done on the minds of Africans themselves – so that they are liberated from an enclosed way of thinking.
My aim is to help improve the lives of Africans to the best of my capacity so that they are more than self-sufficient and self-reliant. In so doing, families, communities, societies and nations are improved. The success of Africans under my assistance is more gratifying and that is where my happiness lies. I am a people’s person.

2. How is Life as a Nigerian in South Africa?

I thought that life in Nigeria would be difficult until I experienced South Africa. It is quite challenging to be a Nigerian in South Africa because not only are you dealing with societal ‘hatred’ and stigmatization, but the laws of the land make it almost near impossible for one to survive let alone be an entrepreneur even the locals can attest to it too! So we are not unique not to face such challenges.
It, however, must be understood that Nigerians in South Africa aren’t here to ruin, steal or plunge resources, but rather to seek a better life whilst also improving the economy of the country. This is what I also say to my staff, to always see the brighter side of things regardless of the challenges.
Too many Nigerians have lost hope in pursuing their dreams here because almost every door of business has been closed to them. Nigerians are full of love and are very open about their culture which they are willing to share for people to understand them, unfortunately, that also hasn’t ended too well as we constantly fall on the wrong side of the country based on mindset and generalization. On that note, running Dexterity Radio ( has exposed me to lots of ideologies and mindsets which I must say are very interesting and also misleading as to who Nigerians really are.

3. How did you get your idea or concept for the Dexterity Brand?

Firstly, it was God’s divine revelation, through prayers and constant searching.
I identified a gap in the industry which was in direct relation to the desire and dream I have for Africa.
A lot of my brothers and sisters are frustrated as foreigners in different countries due to lack of information or unreliable resources that end up exploiting foreigners.
Dexterity is purely an African brand designed and built to cater for the various needs of Africans in Africa and in Diaspora. In turn, it will be used as a means to unify people of Africa in an almost borderless continent, to understand each other, build sustainable relationships with one another and yes build one another into one gigantic commercial engine.

4. Which story in your portfolio are you most proud of?

Apart from the Dexterity Brand, I initially started “Question Uncensored” which was a TV talk show related to life, business and entrepreneurs in and around Africa. I was privileged to air this programme on TopTV a few years ago which drew audiences from all over Africa.
This show was designed to cater to business people either in start-ups, existing businesses or entrepreneurs that had vital questions to assist them in their businesses. The inevitable happened and to no surprise to me, which was why would a Nigerian be doing such show? It was taken off the air and I let go with no resistance because the station had a mind-set or personality they wanted to see on air. So goes the usual debacle of a Nigerian… hahaha

5. What is the best advice you’ve been given?

Don’t give up when starting your business, perseverance and consistency are key to building your brand. Build your brand first and your business will follow.
Nothing is impossible if only you dare to see it. With prayers to God Almighty, all things are possible.

6. What is one thing you wish you knew when you were younger?

Oh, my goodness… So many things! That being young and naïve is actually a blessing, growing up too quick is not always a good thing. I skipped a lot of my childhood experiences and had to become a dad (to my siblings) at a tender age to support and provide for my family. The other thing is to also be very careful what you wish for, it may actually just come more than you imagined with extras attached!

7. Who are your heroes?

Veronica John(My Mother), Aliko Dangote, Femi Otedola, Steve Jobs, Warren Buffett Nelson Mandela, TD Jakes, Bill Gates and all the African heroes who sacrificed time with their families and the pleasures of life to give me or us the Africa we have today, I say thank you, my heroes.

8. What do you read?

I enjoy reading the Bible, business books, and magazines, autobiographies, motivational Christian books to name a few.

9. So, what do you do for fun?

Wow! That’s a good one. I actually enjoy running, watching movies, love playing with my son, Ephraim and definitely reading.

10. What is on your bucket list?

To travel the world definitely.
To build a Godly legacy that my children and the preceding or subsequent generations will enjoy, to get married someday (very important hahaha!), and I think I would love to write a book about my life’s journey and how and when I actually learned my business acumen. I’m working on a few projects that will make service delivery easy and available to all. Simplicity is what makes it for me. Let’s leave it there for now.

11. How are you with social media?

Ha!  Very very very active particularly on Facebook. I use Instagram and Twitter occasionally and I’m trying to get used to SnapChat!

12. Any Advice for Nigerians in South Africa?

To brace themselves. South Africa is a beautiful country that has vast opportunities though it presents many difficult challenges.
Perseverance is definitely needed. Business opportunities are available provided they are within the needs of the locals of the land.


Follow Darlington Steve on my social media platforms which are: Facebook – Darlington Steve, Instagram @darlingtonsteve and Twitter @darlingtonstevo.

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Nigerians in South Africa
Nigerians in South Africa 9784 posts

We are about democracy, human rights, public opinion, political behavior, civil rights and policy aimed at improving the human condition, with a focus on African countries.

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