388 views | Dr. Biodun Ogungbo | May 4, 2020
The highlight of the last week in April was being publicly recognised for praise by the eminent lawyer, Joseph Bodunrin Daudu, SAN. Unlike Donald Trump, who uses Twitter, he used his Facebook page to announce the 25th Anniversary of his swearing-in (24th of April 1995). He also found space and a few words to thank the ‘’good doctor and Team BASS’’.
In effect, a rather dull week was brightened up immeasurably by JB.
It was the week when Mr President announced the relaxation of the lockdown in Abuja and Lagos. He also announced the 2-week lockdown of Kano State. Belatedly, of course! Since the horse had already bolted, with over 200 dead and buried in Kano without a diagnosis.
As at today, two Emirs, eminent professors, doctors, nurses, an editor and at least a few hundred more people have died of Covid-19 disease. The delay in public advocacy to counter the ‘’Babu Corona’’ narrative in the North, the socio-economic conditions in the state, the lack of leadership and so many more failures has put the North in peril.
Of course, healthcare is poorer in the North than anywhere else in Nigeria, so the pressure reached boiling point pretty quick. Healthcare personnel, without the personal protective equipment and the requisite training ran away from the war front. The people, without any immediate recourse, ran away from the towns, and many are trooping into Abuja. The street kids, Almajiris, were ‘’exported’’ to different states by clueless governors in the North.
This put all of us in real danger of contracting the disease and of course, dying from it.
The honeymoon period of Coronavirus and Covid-19 disease in Nigeria is truly over. The number of infections is increasing in Abuja. Whether innate or imported from Kano is now completely immaterial! Anyone who still thinks that the heat, being black or hiding under the bed is protective is a big fool.
This disease kills and there is no cure at present. It is also an indiscriminate killer and it does not respect nobility. It kills the rich and the poor, young and old, male or female. It kills some at home and more inside the hospital. It is an efficient killer that robs you of breath. Once it gets hold of your lungs, the need to breathe overtakes all reason. Concentrating on the next breath means you forget everything else.
So, before you forget your own name, it is time to get a pen, paper and start writing a will. Start your essay with the following: If I die tomorrow, I will have no regrets.
If I die tomorrow
I will miss the end of the premiership. It would have been nice to know if Liverpool wins the title or not. I suspect they will but you never know. I will stop making banana and apple cakes which I have learnt during this lockdown. That has been part of my e-learning across the pond with the family.
Definitely, miss neurosurgery and opening people’s brains to see if the brain of the Nigerian politician is different from that of the rest of the population. The level of kleptocracy is so profound that there must be a bank vault somewhere in their frontal lobes. Even during this pandemic, some are busy scheming, passing dodgy legislation and stealing the money donated for hunger palliation!
The family will be okay. Yes, I know it will be painful but I should always be close by in any case. I know for certain that my own long-dead mother is only a tear away. I often ask for her help during difficult neurosurgery operations!
Regardless, it would be great to prepare the family and ensure they are in good shape emotionally, psychologically, mentally and financially. Death related things are difficult but worth talking about. Covid-19 deaths have been lonely for many and extra sad for the family left behind. Someone said life is hard but not as hard as closing the casket on your loved ones. Even worse, is saying goodbye on Whatsapp!
No casket for me though, as I prefer cremation. No eulogies and no lies. If anything you know I am a realist, not a pessimist. I lived as I pleased and I did what I could!
Which brings me back to JB?
How do you write an emergency will during this period? What do you need to include or exclude? What exactly do you have? Who do you leave your inheritance? How does one protect the estate from the government?
Remember, it is the same government that’s put us all in this mess!
We may yet beat this disease. But, it needs collective action and strength of character. It requires that everyone be their brother’s keeper. House the Almajiris in a hotel and look after them for 3 months. Don’t worry about money or possessions for now. You will not need it if you are dead. Feed the hungry in your area and sew facemasks for your neighbour. Share your hand sanitizers and offer soap and water to your enemy.
The real enemy is not in your yard. It in the air and everywhere!