For every nation there’s a term, and when its term comes, they can’t put it back by a single hour, nor bring it forward – Quran 7:34
Death is an analogical reality; the moment you’re born you’re old enough to taste death – Aristotle
Death is a part of life and once it strikes someone you so dearly love, your existence will be by some means shaken.
On that day, as I was rolling a tyre as most children of my age did then, and a cousin came in and said, “Your Kawu is dead.” Since then things have never been the same again for the family.
The moment he signaled to our sister, Shabiki, that our lovely father had passed on, it became a bolt from the blue and I ran out of the house. Outside, sympathisers were calling after me that I should take heart over what had happened. I was nine years old, but I knew what a father meant to his children.
On the eve of his death, I was asked by an elder brother to go to the General Hospital, Dukku, Gombe State, and look after Kawu, alongside Dr Ahmed (an elder brother), as his condition had taken a turn for the worse. At the hospital, we thought Kawu would not make it through the night, but somehow, he was alive and battling. We stayed there fanning and doing other things for him until day break when some brothers took over from us.
Kawu used to tell us sweet and bitter experiences while walking with him to the farm. He taught me how to pursue my career and he enrolled me into primary school when I was six. Prior to that he taught me the basics of Islamic knowledge at home.
Not only is father gone, but the best counsellor and supporter one could have. I would run home to give him breaking news that I emerged first position in school and he would dip into his pockets and dash me fresh naira bills.
Kawu, you trained me to be responsible and disciplined. You also taught me Islamic education and enrolled me into Western education. You supported me morally, financially and in many other ways. The pieces of advice you gave me remain fresh in my mind.
Kawu was a man of truth who stood by his words and actions and he gave us good orientation such as being obedient to our elders.
Kawu used to banter jokes with us by ascribing pet names to us. He called me Chairman Basiru or Shembinga (sturdy one).
Kawu ended up being my superman, and I am pleased that he was a good enough person for me to call dad.
May Allah (SWT) forgive all his shortcomings and admit him and the entire deceased Muslim Ummah all over the world into Jannatul Firdaus for the sake of Prophet Muhammad (SAW).
Rest in RIJF, my beloved Kawu.
Sulaiman wrote from Dukku, Gombe State.