Monday, 21 December 2015

The Nigerian State and the many Ishaya Adamu Maiyaki’s

The Nigerian State and the many Ishaya Adamu Maiyaki’s

Ishaya Adamu Maiyaki (aka Nagode) was buried yesterday at the cemetery in Ungwar Boro, a suburb on the southern end of Kaduna metropolis.
He met his sudden death on Sunday, the 1st of October, at about 8:45pm. He had closed from work, at Grand Motel in Barnawa where he worked as a janitor, that night and picked a bus going to Sabon Tasha from the bridge by Danbo International School junction, just before the First Bank Kakuri roundabout. He alighted at the Tati Motel bus-stop in Sabo and probably thought to walk the rest of his way home at Ungwar Boro, or perhaps walk to a point convenient enough for him to pick a tricycle to commute the short distance. We would never know. But no sooner than he began moving, a car came from behind and shoveled him off the ground, sending him swirling in the air before landing on the tarmac, crashing his left temple on a kerb. He died instantly. His remains were deposited that night at the St Gerard’s Catholic Hospital mortuary.
The car that hit Ishaya was driven by a group of youngsters, high on alcohol and God-knows-what other drugs. They were what you may refer to as a real and present danger on our roads to other road users. To boot, by the following day, Monday afternoon, when Ishaya’s relatives went to dig his grave, those same youngsters were spotted in the cemetery premises “highing” away on marijuana and other stuff no one can tell. They were unremorseful. They were not arrested even though the police impounded their vehicle.
I had known Ishaya all my life. We all lived and grew up in the same quarter, the Sabon Gari end of Tudu Wada, Kaduna. They lived on Manchock Street, their house an eye view from the famous Kwanar Mai-shayi. He was older than I. He earned the nickname “Nagode” from his footballing days in the Eighties while he was playing for his school team, Maimuna Gwarzo Government Day Secondary School, Tudun Wada, from where he finished in 1984. He was a skillful and pacey left winger and whenever any of his teammates laid a very good pass his way, he screamed “Nagode!”, hence earning the sobriquet. He also played for the local amateur team, Amo, which later became junior UNTL, and participated in state amateur leagues. He was also the Choirmaster of his Church, Hossana Baptist Church, down their Manchock Street home at that time.
The fact, and truth, is that Ishaya is one of the very many ordinary Nigerians that die every day on our roads without the Nigerian state paying any heed. If one is availed with statistics of people that die annually in road mishaps – if many of those be referred to as mishaps – one will realize that they probably far outstrip the number of persons being killed by Boko Haram. It is no doubt good and needful that the state fights any insurgency to a stop, but is it only when people die in insurgencies that the state may stand up and fight for them?
As mentioned earlier, those stoned young men that killed Ishaya are walking free, and going about further abusing substances as usual, without being arrested much less prosecuted. This is despite the fact that there is usually a good level of police presence in that area. All the police can do is to impound the vehicle, as if the vehicle drove itself.
Whenever there is a plane crash we see investigations being carried out to the extent of bringing in foreign experts to help. That is when we get to know the names of the victims of crashes. That is when the Nigerian state refers to her deceased citizens by name. Can’t the state know her citizens by name in whatever circumstances? What does it take for the state to ensure that none of its citizens is left on the margins of society?
This government got elected using the change mantra. Things have for long gone adrift in the country. Indeed things must change and be quickly seen to be changing. All that needs being done is to make sure that organs of government charged with protecting Nigerians work. There is no reason why the police should not perform as basic a duty as arresting and prosecuting drunk murderers on our roads. What real investigation do they need to carry out before doing that?
Nigeria is one country where roads are built without walk-ways for pedestrians. Our cities keep getting crowded with both human and vehicular traffic, yet roads are being built without such facilities. City road are built without street lights, making them unsafe and insecure at night. Such little infrastructural provisions and systemic purgation are all that are required to begin to capture vast Nigerians in the social net, and they do not cost anywhere near waging campaigns against insurgencies, which are in themselves products of, amongst other things, people perceiving of being left behind by the state.
At 48 years of age, Ishaya left behind his wife and three children. He shall be greatly missed. May his soul rest in perfect peace; and may the Lord grant his family the fortitude to bear the loss.

BLUEPRINT Newspaper; Thur Nov. 5, 2015

1 comment:

  1. May his soul rest in perfect peace and I pray for God's comfort on us all. He'll be greatly missed.