Welcome to another Magical Monday.
My weekend was packed full; from a factory visit in Ikorodu, to a “boat cruise class reunion” with my Champions’ Class of 1985 Federal Government Girls College, Benin City, made up of the most boisterous women I have come to know. Incredibly sharp-witted, determined and committed. True champions. Although we were all excited and happy to reconnect almost 29 years later as you will see from the pictures, it occurred to me that we are truly fortunate to all be where we are.
My post on my Facebook page following our reunion will give you an indication why I referred to our class of 1985 as fortunate.
Excerpts from my FB Post of May 11/14
“On a site by UBTH, Benin, in Bendel State (now Edo State), Federal Girls Benin sat, a seat of UNITY…girls no different from those currently being abducted and sold in North Eastern Nigeria….we came from different backgrounds, different cities, learnt new names, new cultures, new languages, were exposed to girls who would later become life-long friends- separated by time, location and life but connected and bound by our shared and unique experiences as carefree girls, free to dream, to believe, to make friends, free to finish our schooling and almost 30 years later, free to reunite, to love, to go down memory lane …to just be grateful and to recognise that although fortunate…certain young girls are being deprived of what we took for granted.”
Here is one of the responses from a class mate from another Federal Government College, where I did my A’ Levels- Federal Government College Warri, Delta State.
“Yes! That was what the Federal Government Colleges or better still the “UNITY” schools were established for and therefore named accordingly…to UNITE….while educating our children from different parts of Nigeria…everyone was happy to mix freely with each other, no fear of being assaulted or abducted. I recall that in FGC Warri, the UNITY school I attended, they used to assign a senior student to take care of the students from the northern part of the country who everyone felt had travelled quite a distance to acquire learning…the school felt the duty to protect and make them comfortable for the duration of their study…all in a bid to UNITE! But alas the story is different in Nigeria today. NO…we must #bringbackourgirls!!!! UZOAMAKA AGU-ONWUKA.
So you see my dear Ignited Champion friends, today, even as we embark on what I believe will be a Magical Week, I can’t help but remember my childhood experiences, traveling all the way from Kano State, where we lived on Bompai Road, to Federal Government Girls College Benin City. I don’t ever recall seeing myself as an Ibo girl, or a Christian. All I remember was I was a proud Nigerian being brought up by proud civil servant parents, who made us sing the national anthem and recite the national pledge daily while on holidays. Even when my father visited us at school, we were subjected to the recitals and singing the anthem – surely from a background of pride and respect for our nation. Alas, as Uzoamaka correctly noted, the story is different today.
Today’s story can however be different. I believe we all share a responsibility to bring back our girls and the Nigeria of our dreams. I agree with Dr. Anthony Rapu that we should all recognise and embrace a new sense of responsibility and start a campaign “I AM NIGERIA”, because truly, until we accept individual responsibility, we may bring back our girls, but we may very well have no nation for them to return to. Let’s remember to say a prayer for their families. Let’s learn to accept responsibility. And then follow it up with -appropriate and responsible action. Consistently, until we bring back our girls and our Nation.
Have a truly Magical Monday.
Yours in Greatness!
PS: Remember that ‘Magical’ Monday is a deliberate choice and perspective. As is a GREAT LIFE, A GREAT FAMILY, A GREAT BUSINESS AND A GREAT NATION.