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Gov Emmanuel’s Christmas carol dance on Akwa Ibom graves


Maybe I should have stayed on that MTV channel; at least I would not be this sour and have to go to bed in a very bad mood.

I flipped on to Channels to ensure I remained with some Nigerian content only to stumble on a Christmas carol in progress with the Governor that escaped death a few days ago making something that looked to me like a speech. 

I double-checked my brain and then asked my wife whether Akwa Ibom was not the state that just lost some twenty six to two hundred people in a church building collapse barely a week ago and she confirmed it. 

At that point I could not hold it any longer, I felt like vomiting and had to run into my bedroom and afterwards went into the other rooms immediately to complain to the whole world.

I took time to rant in the social media about how I felt and true as in all circumstances, there were those who held opposing views on the issue. 

Some people did not feel the way I did which I respect because we all cannot have the same view on issues. 

For some, mourning can go on side by side with Praise, to some, the state had already declared two day mourning so life can and should go on. 

To others, the state needed to thank God because it could have been worse, yet to some others, the Governor may have needed to testify for his life and the support he provided because he was alive instead of being amongst the dead.

What came to my mind was the Igbo adage “Eburu ozu onye ozo, odi ka ebu nku” (another person’s corpse does not attract sympathy). 

My thoughts were on whether such a Christmas carol would have held if the Governor had been a victim of that disaster? 

What if his wife or children were victims? For God’s sake, as I write, none of the corpses have been buried, oh!

I don’t know, maybe I am a very emotional person and maybe even over reacting about this but I honestly feel bad about this and feel so violated tonight that I had to write this to free myself of this bad anger swelling in me. 

I had to state clearly how we have come to trivialise human life in this country. Think of each of the families of those victims right now. 

They are probably making arrangements to bury their dead, maybe they do not even have the money to buy the caskets, maybe some have not even been identified. 

It’s very possible that parents have lost their loved ones, maybe, even children have lost their parents which means their lives will never be the same. 

Look around you and see that your family or relative near you right now, for me I have my last daughter lying in her cradle, I just turned to confirm she is sleeping soundly. 

Now think again if that your relative was caught up in that disaster, probably cut into two halves by a metal rod in such a violent death, tell me if you would go on with a Christmas carol barely a week after?

It is so sad that our minds have been so skewed that human lives mean so little to us these days. 

That same weekend, from my counting, about 50 people died around Benin, Edo state from an accident, about same number died from Boko Haram strike in Adamawa and then the Akwa Ibom tragedy. 

Guys, these are not just numbers, these are fathers, sisters, brothers, uncles, children, etc!

This was an avoidable man-made disaster and whatever the reasons for progressing with such festivities a week after, from my personal point of view, are in bad taste, unless they can convince me they got consent from the families of every victim involved. 

If it were a terrorist activity, one would have advanced the argument of letting the terrorist know that their plans to destabilize the civilized society will not work hence supporting the planned party. 

But that is not the case here and every attempt to rationalize this injustice adds insult to the injury of the affected families.

Obidike Peter wrote from www.peterobidike.com and p_obidike@yahoo.com


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