“Politics should be the part time job of every citizen.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower
On December 10, 2005, Sosoliso Airlines Flight #1145 from Abuja crashed in Port-Harcourt killing 61 students from Loyola Jesuit College (one of the country’s leading secondary schools); Pastor Bimbo Odukoya, a role model for many and 62 other Nigerians. There were only two survivors of that plane crash. We lost those 108 lives because there were no emergency facilities at the airport. Fire trucks with no water; no trained personnel. Senseless loss; wasted lives. Some of Nigeria’s best and brightest – Nigeria’s future.
Iyinoluwa Aboyeji was then an SSS2 student at Loyola. He had overslept and missed the bus to the airport. He graduated from Loyola; went to university in Canada and finished last year. He’s now a budding entrepreneur with bookneto.com.
Iyinoluwa had plans to come back to Nigeria to help ‘fix’ a system that frustrates its citizens; kills innovation and where the good continue to die young. In a piece for YNaija on Tuesday, December 11th, 7 years after the Sosoliso crash, he writes about why Nigeria may never be home.
Taiwo Bankole chose to be in Nigeria. On Monday, December 10, 2012, he died on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. In his words, “Community Organization is my passion while being a Change Agent is my Calling. But, Creating innovative businesses remains my Expertise.” Another young Nigerian cut short in his prime.
The two gentlemen are linked to the EiE Family. Iyinoluwa – a diaspora supporter and Taiwo, a volunteer through coalition member Paradigm Initiative Nigeria (PIN – @pinigeria). Bankole had helped organize the Delta R|S|V|P Town Hall Meeting for the 2011 Elections. He had also distributed #Revoda flyers and provided back-end support for #Revoda over the 4 weekends of the elections.
At the heart of EiE’s work is our desire to let every Nigerian see that caring about politics and governance is not a luxury or passing fancy. We have a collective responsibility to ensure that those who govern us do so judiciously. You could have access to a private jet or an air ambulance, but medical care requires that you survive the ghastly accident caused by reckless tankers or a road that has been in a state of disrepair for years!
Rich and poor. Young and old. Mrs Kanene Okonjo was kidnapped on Sunday in Delta State and Mrs Titilayo Rotimi on Monday in Oyo State. Both are wives of prominent people. No one is immune from this monster we have created.
Taiwo Bankole was buried on December 13th.