It is with great anguish and heavyheartedness I’m penning this down. My beloved city of birth; Jos was under attack again after almost two years of relative peace. This is the city I love very much and call home. This blast came two days after the bomb blasts in Sabon gari, Kano in which many lives were lost. Clearly we’re up against an enemy or enemies who are so desperate and determined to destroy this nation.
I was in the library together with my friend Bakson Moses preparing for a test later in the day when we heard a heavy sound. Immediately, the Librarian confirmed it to us that it was a bomb blast and asked us all to leave the library. Before I knew it, the whole University was in confusion. Everybody was rushing out of the school. From school, we could see the smoke from terminus market which is located at the center of the city and the scene of the blasts.
On reaching home safely, I decided to visit Plateau State Specialist hospital so as to check the number of deaths, casualties and to render my service if needed. I have never seen anything like this before in my entire life. The mortuary was filled up with corpses and also the casualty unit of the hospital was full to capacity with people that had sustained various degrees of injuries.
Am really worried and I fear for my dear country. Nigeria is literally melting. We are really under siege. The government’s lackadaisical attempts to stop the spread of terror to other part of the North east, North central, North west and the country in general has exposed the defects within our security apparatus. Our people are dying, mothers are crying, relations are mourning and kids are lying. We live in perpetual fear every day because government has failed to provide one of its basic functions and responsibility—protecting lives and properties.
It was Borno, then Abuja, Kano and now Jos. We don’t know their next target, where and when. Yesterday in the hospital, I saw cooperation from both Muslims and Christians in evacuating the dead bodies, helping those that were seriously injured and most importantly donating blood to the injured. Both sides condemned the act in all totality. I witness the pains and anguish of parents and relations who had lost their loved ones from both sides. I saw families who were still looking for their loved ones. My neighbour and friend Peejay lost his cousin James. This morning, I met Tanimu in the hospital who is still searching for his wife Sadiya and their seven months old baby. She was in the market when the attack took place yesterday. He has visited all the major hospitals in Jos but all to no avail. Yesterday was really a sad day for us here in Jos.
The joint Council of Religious leaders on the Plateau were also on ground to lend support to the injured ones, console the bereaved and to preach unity and peace among the adherents of the two religions. Among them were Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama; Catholic Archbishop of Jos, Sheikh Bala Lau; Chief Imam of Jos, Bishop Benjamin Kwashi; The Anglican Archbishop of Jos, Sheikh (Dr) Khalid Aliyu; Secretary-General of Jama’atu Nasril Islam, Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (Plateau State Chapter) and a host of other clergies. They all unanimously agreed that we’re in this together and “United we stand and divided we fall”. They both prayed for peace in our dear state and country.
Yes many have prayed and fast to God to bring peace and sanity to our nation. Even the traditional worshipers were not left out in these prayers. But I strongly believe that Allah will not change the situation of a people until the people are ready to change it themselves. We must challenge and question our leaders to wake up to their duties in protecting lives and properties of its citizens.
The questions begging for answers are “What does it take to be human?” and “What do we owe each other as human beings?” I believe that our humanity goes beyond our religion, region, race or ethnicity. Regardless of it all, we are humans and we must respect this humanity that we all have in common. It’s sad and disheartening to see the kind of atrocities committed against fellow human beings in my country and around the world. So much pain but no relief! Nigerians must all unite to save this country from these woes. We must not allow them win.
We must voice out against this stupidity and failure government to protect its own citizens. And the voice must be one voice; the voice of humanity, the voice of unity and the voice that will again speak out to say “enough is enough”. We are tied and exhausted from fear and mourning our deaths. Rest in peace to all those we lost to the bomb blast yesterday.