A Letter to My Father
I hope this letter meets you well. I am sure, as this letter arrive, you are doing your Nafil prayers or reading The Quran.
Dad, Kamar wasa, it has been 21 years since you left us. In fact, mores than 21. You are in my prayers as I am sure you always pray for us.
I write you this letter to let you know that we are not doing so well. We have left a lot of what you taught us. I will come to this later.
Meanwhile, It is also important for me, although I know you know, to inform you that, Babangida(Abdullahi), your ‘auta’ followed you some few months after you left us. As you know, he was bed ridden for more than 10 years. He eventually passed on, some months after you. He was too eager to go to where you went. Mustapha too. He is late. I still recall your last car ride. It was in a Mercedes Benz that was driven from Ahmadu Bello teaching hospital, ZARIA, to Katsina. In deed, Mustapha took your copse in his car and drove alone from Zaria to Katsina. I still recall that day and the night before. Yes, I could remember the night before, we (I and Mustapha) met with hospital management and agreed they take you to a reserve hospital amenity room. It was not to happen, before they get the room ready, you were moved the mortuary. Before Mustapha , HajIya also followed. She too is in the heavenly gardens as I write to you. She had a stroke and was in coma for a long period of time. After Several months in coma, she regained her consciousness. As she came back, we were happy. She could look at me. I could see the brightness in her eyes. She could recognized me. One day, she ate. A big chunk of fish. All alone. Only that she was fed by a nurse. But she chewed and swallowed. Asking (using gestures) for more. We were so happy. A video was sent to me while I was performing Umrah. Allahu Akbar, Hajiya could eat. She regained consciousness and now she could eat. We were so happy of the eventual recovery. However, she passed on. Some complications, and eventually death came. I still feel her death as much as I feel yours. Hers was with a big difference. She died in my presence. I could still see her corpse on bed. White cotton wool was used to block her nostrils and her ears. Allahu Akbar!
The death occur of so many of my uncles (your brothers) and aunties (your sisters). I am certain your souls are together as a family as at the moment. Please extend my regards to them.
However, those of us here In life, we are as bad as it could be. There are less family ties. I still remember how my ‘kayan sallah’ come to me. My uncles provided all. Nothing from my father. I still remember how we do rabon sallah and rabon azumi. Now it is different. Most of us are egocentric and selfish. You hardly know your brothers’s children. Those of your uncles and cousins remember you only when they need you for something. if you are unable to provide their needs, you will never hear from them again. I sometimes think it is our fault. Is it not? I recall how you relate with your brothers. I drove you to them. I also know when they come home. I know how you will go in for hours. We do not do that now. Not at all. However, I must also say, some of our nephews are bent on reviving the old ties. May Allah help them bring back those good family moments.
Dad, On the lighter side, History has a way of repeating itself. I was told you contested elections for the Federal legislative assembly in 1960. Your party was NCNC. You did again in 1964. The party was NEPU. You lost. Both times. I also contested for the Federal Assembly in 2015. Like you, I lost.
It is time to pray Asr prayer. I will stop here and will soon write you again.