The entire event was done at the most serene area of Borno, what should be only a few kilometers away from Sambisa. It was such a classified event that was meant to be top secret, but I have learnt overtime from my teacher-mum that whatever isn’t within you alone is no longer secret. I was at the Funeral, and I am here to give you an account of it.
entrepreneur in the city of Lagos managed to be part of the supposedly classified event; Deo Volente, I will share it at the end of my account. “We all gather here in memory of our dearest girls that lost their lives in the hands of their deadly abductors…” Looking around me, it was shocking to realize that this was being said by about the most celebrated personality in the Christian association. It was even more shocking to find most celebrated government officials there present. What about all the supposedly emotional dispositions? What about all the video that went viral? What about all the guided and misguided statements? What about the $1 billion dollar loan? My heart broke completely apart! There I saw the true face of my country Nigeria.
It was what could be described as a glamorous, black and red day. Everyone was looking bright and beautiful in some black garments only with tints of red -are these not the same colors chosen for the BBOG initiative? What a mockery of their own people. Their women were all laced up with gold bracelets and necklaces, expensive shoes and handbags, and of course overly expensive human hair. Their men were looking brightly simple with expensive shoes and wrist watches. I’m sure you have an idea what these top Government officials would look like. Yes, they were looking just the same way you are imagining. They then ironically created a deliberate funeral mood. I wished I never found my way to the event.
“…and may their souls rest in peace… Take heart, my fellow Nigerians, our girls have gone forever…” This, to me, was the statement of the day. It was rather carelessly said by the only man upon whom over 200 million people had their hopes. How disheartening it was for this man to make such statement behind the back of these people. I could no longer take the penetrating pain, and so I had to leave, and decided to tell it to the concerned Nigerians who wouldn’t mind spending their last days to fight the course of bringing these girls back. On my way home, I pondered over how to tell these people who have spent over 100days on active protest, and an idea came to mind that in the stead of the BBOG campaign, why not invest the same effort in another drive that will be more purposeful and quite consolatory? Big T, my secondary school football coach, would tell us that if you miss the ball, don’t miss the leg. Yes, maybe such drive.
When I got home, I thought first to say a few things to my president. My dear Mr. President, I heaved a heavy sigh when I thought of my advice to you. Even as a young entrepreneur, I understand how much you cannot be an expert at all things. It is the reason the structure allows you to equip yourself with experts in the varying fields of Government. I won’t stop wondering what you expected when you appointed Mr. Labaran Maku, a prematurely educated teacher and journalist who has got no background of strategic communication, as a whole overseer of information and communication in the country. Such man would only help you handle issues like a reporter, headmaster, and probably a teacher -Nigeria is a more mature country than this.
Please advise your successor never to make the same mistake -it will only be deadly on the part of the people. The same error is probably responsible for your ever-dwindling personality in the media. What were you expecting when you hired a brilliant Theater Arts graduate and Newspaper Columnist, Mr. Ruben Abati, as your special adviser on Media and Publicity. The innocent man will successfully give you brilliant drama performances and fine group of words in the media. It is not his fault that he knows no much about strategic media concepts -he is brilliant, but not a strategist. After the tearful Chibok experience, I thought not to bother so much about Doyin Okupe -he doesn’t exactly matter here anyway.
In the wake of the long narration I have managed to give, I find it somewhat necessary to mention that it has been a long sleep after-all. Could all of these have been the nightmare of the first order? I dare the president of a nation to wake me from my sleep if they have been.
Ayo Alaba Idowu