On a personal note, Obadiah is friend and brother. He affectionally calls me EGBON– very big brother in Yoruba language. He makes the gesture of prostrating whengreeting me on the occasions that we met in person. He exhibits the trait that isembodied in the OMOLUABI ethos of the Yoruba Nation.

He may have been born out of Kaduna State. Yet he exhibits the traits that are solely identified with the Yoruba peoples of the world. Obadiah Mailafia is thus a cross cultural person. He could have been an excellent product of the free education legacy of the Obafemi Awolowo years. That Nigeria failed to embrace the farsightedness of Education for All Policy of Western Nigeria since 1954 is the foundation of today’s banditry and brigandage across Northern Nigeria. All Nigerians are paying a very great price through insecurity.*

We speak of Obadiah as one of us in Afenifere, the foremost Yoruba socio-cultural and political organization. He is a Voice of Reason out of the Middle Belt Region of Nigeria. Like many other true children out of the House of Awolowo, he a believerin the quest for change in the Nigerian polity. He spoke passionately for a Restructured Nigeria. He not only spoke, but he also acted without fear of those that are sitting over our polity.

Very few have courage of their convictions. Most covet positions. Many act in favour of personal comfort. Acting in complicit, Obadiah had the opportunity to be with the establishment. But he wisely chose to be with the people. He fought onthe side of those making strident calls for Nigeria to be restructured so that therights of self-determination could be accorded every Nationality across Nigeria. It is a noble quest that shall come to pass unfailingly. Nigeria shall be restructured. Freedom and egalitarianism shall flourish. Time is pregnant.

It is not an accident that he became one of the most articulate columnists in theNigerian Tribune Newspapers. He readily found an intellectual home in the Tribune. Obadiah wrote copiously every week without fail. No issue or idea was out of bounds for discourse. With the legacy of thoughts online on the website of the Tribune, the man whose passage we are celebrating today will obviously be alive inour minds till the end of humanity.

Afenifere Organization joins others to celebrate the rights of passage of Dr. Obadiah Mailafia. We commiserate with family, friends and associates. Death at whatever age is a matter of fate and destiny. The will of God is immutable.