…As the Women lead, because there are no Men!***
She is strikingly beautiful and hospitable! And yet, she unimaginably efficient and absolutely effective. People like Assistant Comptroller General.
Ekekezie, currently the Number 1 Customs Officer in Harvey Road, presiding over the entirety of Lagos State, Ogun, Oyo, and Osun States and more may not outrightly strike a chord, until you begin to hear stories filtering to Nigerians from some of the nation’s embassies!
A retired Vice Principal and wife of a retired Principal had written, basically out of her pious, enviable Christian ideals, that a fairly used car she bought 10 years ago, as 3rd User, has no valid Customs papers! She routed her letter to the Comptroller General, Hamid Ali through Ekekezie’s office, requesting that they tell her the correct duty to enable her pay it!
Few Nigerians, except truly devout Muslims, Christians and AT Worshippers would do that!
Mrs. Dorcas Animashaun acted on the strength of an advice given by Customs image maker, Joseph Attah.
Ekekezie invited her; and from Oyo town in Oyo State, she came, loyally accompanied by her elderly husband, also a retired Principal!
No duty or tax collector is liked, except few people like Ekekezie! She welcomed them, standing, confirmed that they truly came from the ancient town of the Alafin; purposely because of her invitation; and instantly apologised for taking them through such stress, before pleading with them to first take a cup of tea, each!
With people like Ekekezie, the task of duty collection is an art!
With humble people like the Animashauns, Nigeria as a country is blessed with virtues beyond patriotism!
It was therefore against such background, where women are performing creditably, harder tasks of collecting duties or ‘tax’ that one cannot but be dumbfounded, when you see men, mandated to perform easier tasks, in saner environments, and all you hear of, is not but acts which leaves fellow Nigerians worse off and severely frustrated!
Nigerians visiting the Nigerian House in London to collect or renew their passports were either criminalized or frustrated so much that they begin to regret being Nigerians!
In case you have not watch the two videos, please watch them here. And if you think the frustration in London was something to ruminate about, then hear what our brothers/ sisters’ lamentation sound like in Ottawa’s Canada! We didn’t get it wrong. We only succeeded in putting the Square pegs in roundly Smooth holes, leaving dangerously gaping spaces with the attendant consequences!
One guy in London was so frustrated that physically attacked the diplomatic vehicles in the embassy, cannibalized them, becoming instantly, a criminal guest of the Westminster Magistrates Court!
There may be nothing wrong in Government making a mistake in the appointment of any Nigerians into its embassies. No one is infallible. The real mistake therefore, would be, if after investigation, we don’t amend, even where it can be substantiated that the foreign embassies have largely created a system, that deliberately criminalises our citizen!
In each of the instances, people have paid; the embassies asked them to come on particular days from distances, farther than Oyo Alafin. The Embassy officials knew their documents were not ready. While Ekekezie stood to receive those she invited, the men at the embassies failed to communicate to those so invited of any rescheduled dates! Let the women lead, now that there are no men!
I was once in Senegal; and after five days of eating only rice and fish inside Croix de Sud hotel, because I couldn’t swallow cruisse – cruise, which was the only alternative, and headed to the Nigerian House! My request on arrival was that I wanted to eat ‘Eba’! They asked us to come back and we did! Even Sister Remi Itie, the publisher of the Pathways magazine ignored rice! The five of us devoured eba with great relish! Only one person took rice! Don’t ask: where did we get it wrong!
In the meantime, join me in thanking the members of the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC), who dared all and sauntered into the deadly Ikire ‘forest’, with great fanfare, on a dangerous mission of flushing out the dreaded “bandits”, kidnapping, maiming, killing and rapping innocent Nigerians!
There’s something absolutely unique about the Yoruba nation: hospitable to a fault, yet, capable of holding its head up, despite all odds or aridity of life! They even sent messages to the bandits, before going into the bush!
How many lawyers, doctors or journalists could enter into such dreaded zones?
But then, they do not need the lawyers, doctors and journalists to enter there! We have the OPC, a group of selfless, daring and adventurous, altruistic souls! And that, is what assures that the Yoruba nation will continue to exists sui generis!