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Friday, March 18, 2016

Farewell to James Eneojo Ocholi



What does farewell mean, if not death? But will death itself be a farewell?

I won't forget that fateful day, Sunday, 6th March,2016 when I received the shock news about the deaths of James Ocholi, Blessing (his wife) and Joshua (his son). James Ocholi hailed from Ogbabede-Abocho in Dekina Local Government Area (LGA), Kogi State.

Eyewitness accounts indicated that the death occurred when the rear tyre of the Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) in which the family was traveling with burst on high speed making the vehicle to skid off the road and somersaulted severally.

The people of Kogi State are still mourning the death of Abubakar Audu, then came the painful death of James Ocholi. The shock wave about his death has not left his community.

The deceased specialized in Incorporation of companies, Constitutional and Commercial Law, Conveyance as well as private and public international law. Ocholi's contribution in the Ministry of Labour and Productivity where he served before his demise had the presence of dedication and self-less service. The Kogi-born luminary held the nation spellbound with his incisive analysis on issues that affects the progress of the nation. Call him an archetypal gentleman, selfless pacifist, an accomplished Lawyer and erudite politician and you won't be wrong. His enigma and sagacity in leadership can't be over-looked.

Those who knew him kept saying that his rise from the background was not easy. Mourning has not left his Abuja residence. I must say here that the death of James Ocholi has brought to the fore the issue of recklessness in drivers in the convoys of politicians.

This is the time to come up with a template to reduce the issue of over-speeding. Many political appointees have lost their lives in avoidable road accidents caused by carelessness on the part of some of the drivers. It is very sad that the political career of this brilliant Igala Lawyer has come to an end.

Lest I forget, immortalising the Ocholis, if the government desires might not be the end, the issues that led to his death must be looked into and also corrected. The painful aspect is that the deaths that occur on Nigerian roads, are more often than not, man-made, regretfully sometimes self-invited and for that reason, it then becomes unavoidable. A lot of Nigerian road users, indeed feel that life has duplicate. The Ocholis didn't use seat belts, the driver and the orderly used theirs and survived.

The Ocholis left behind: Aaron (a Lawyer), Ojone, Ujo and Ele, all well-groomed children, they are now to hold aloft those ideals, principles and virtues for which their parents and brother lived for. His surviving son, Aaron while mourning the death of his father, mother and brother had assured the nation that all hope was not lost. Hear him, "we are not hopeless, we are really proud of the man he was. We continue to pray to God to comfort us. We will not feel dejected." Such words coming from the chief mourner is indeed touching.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

I commiserate with the Ocholis, Kogi State, the political class and the entire class on this painful deaths.

*Chris Uruakpa wrote this contribution from Lagos and could be reached @chukkyontime
 

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