- 3 commissioners suspended for improper dressing in Ebonyi
- CBN issues two new merchant bank licences
- Ekiti PDP accuses ACN of attacking members
- Daniel eulogises HID Awolowo at 97
- Jonathan hails Koroma's re-election
- Collapsed man: Edo dep gov threatens Airhiavbere
- Communal clash: Police arrest gang leader, 12 others in Nasarawa
- Corruption: There ‘ll be no sacred cow - Jonathan
- Amosun’s wife tasks students on reading culture
- Flooding: Dangote committee sets N50bn target
- Adamawa LG election conducted peacefully
- 1999 Constitution: Women group calls for amendment to gender-biased provisions
The Arik Air hoax
THE incident of a mentally unstable interior decorator brought to the fore again, the need to tighten security at all our local airports. It also underlines the fact that we must ensure that things are done properly by all and sundry. By this, I mean the airport management, the airlines and even passengers should all live up to their responsibilities. All who made statements about the occurrence agreed that the incident, which took place mid-air, was as a result of the mental ill health of the passenger in question. This is the crux of the matter. Why would a mentally ill person be allowed to travel unaccompanied? Is this incident not enough to make the Federal Ministry of Aviation think of how best to manage the industry?
According to a statement by the State Security Service, “On Friday, October 19, 2012, wife of the SSG to the Borno State Government, Hajia Yachilla Jidda, travelled to Maiduguri in company of one Aminu S. Galadima, an interior decorator based in Abuja to do some interior decoration work. On arrival in Maiduguri, he was lodged at Greenland Hotel. During the course of his stay, he exhibited unusual behaviour by smashing a window, and ended up with lacerations on his hands.
“The SSG was contacted, and in collaboration with the hotel management, the subject was taken to Atal Hospital, also in Maiduguri, where he received treatment. His family in Abuja was contacted and they gave confirmation that Galadima had been mentally unstable. In addition, his elder brother who lives in the UK was contacted and he requested that subject be returned to Abuja for medical attention.
“Sunday, October 21, 2012, he was taken to the airport to be returned to Abuja, but missed the flight. However, the airport management was informed of his state of health, and they advised that whenever his return is scheduled, the management should be notified. Unfortunately, when Galadima was taken to the airport on October 23 for his return trip, the management of the airport was not informed, and 10 minutes into the flight, due to slight turbulence, his condition was triggered off.”
Of course this got co-travellers worried; and what right-thinking person on board would not have been scared by the sudden shout of “Allah Akbar, God is great,” the signature tune of the dreaded Boko Haram? Naturally, fellow passengers thought the man was about to do something sinister and dashed towards him, frisking him to make sure he was not about detonating a bomb mid-air. I never thought Nigerians were so courageous! However, had it been true, what would they have done mid-air? Well, we get ingenious when faced with issues of life and death, do we not?
Having said this, I am not surprised at the reaction of this ill passenger, even mentally stable persons experience some disquiet while flying. The great Muhammad Ali, the former world heavyweight boxing champion, confessed that the greatest fear he had was that of flying. Even little me, the moment a plane I am on takes off, I break out in cold sweat accompanied with damp palms. On my last trip by air from Ibadan to Abuja and back a couple of weeks ago, a toddler on the first leg of the trip kept shouting “get down... get down” at take off. Although he could not quite articulate his feelings, I am sure he was scared of flying too! These are the times we live in and those in charge of this mode of transportation would do well to make it as smooth as possible. This incident is a wake-up call for all stakeholders. Suppose it had not been a hoax after all; suppose the man was indeed an agent of satan; all on board would have made an unscheduled exit from this side of the divide.
As I stated earlier, somebody should have travelled with him, maybe a medical personnel or a relative to prevent the unnecessary trauma that other passengers were put through. Apart from this, the fact that those who brought him to the airport failed to inform the airline’s management as well as the airport management, should make them legally liable; or is there nothing like social responsibility on the part of clients? No matter how highly placed the people involved are, they should be made to answer for this lapse.
FROM MY MAILBOX
Re: Jungle justice
'Bestiality in man' is a universal occurrence. Right from William Golding’s age until now, the killing of innocent souls in 'jungle justice' are on without solutions. I think our orientation should be tilted from 'taking laws into our hands' to that of 'asking questions before apportioning blame. Whoever listens to a side n passes judgment is ' Agba osika' - a wicked elder.
— Segun Olujimi, Saki, Oyo State. 08059854764
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Jungle justice is a global occurrence, but the Nigeria chapter is more pronounced in two states in particular -Lagos, and Rivers states. An innocent person can easily be framed up by his perceived enemy and his life terminated by a mob. However, should we not blame this on justice delayed, which makes people lose hope in our judiciary? The delayed or none-action of the police to rescue the suspects, who were paraded by the mob for good four hours, should make us rethink our approach to such issues. The traditional who handed down the jungle justice is a clear representative of the barbarian who takes law into their hands at the slightest provocation.
— Remi Adebisi. Iragbiji 08060373463
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Jungle justice was ancient form of punishment even common in old African empires, including old Oyo Empire fa mi l’ete n tuto (pull my lip and let me spit) kingdom; up till today local vigilante does it without police involvement. Some (unconfirmed) reports say that police do it secretly to naughty, notorious and moronic armed robbers in cells. The revered Alfa does it to young innocent Koran scholars; some (spiritual) churches do it to their members seeking healing! I think it has always been with us. I suggest a stricter and stiffer law be promulgated against jungle justice.
— Aibinuomo, Ibadan. 08059100347
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The essence of reasoning will continue to elude us if we still have among us people - if they merit that - who believe that to qualify as a judge, all you need are weapons of savagery. They will continue in their dastardly acts as long as enforcers of law continue to look the other side rather than bring them to book. How do you placate parents of victims of jungle justice who had sweated to send their wards to school only for these 'hopes' to be hacked down by unschooled vigilance group who are fallouts of our failed security system?
— Dayo Oladeji, Saki, Oke Ogun. 08027278748
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