We always think of you. Always. Yes, You.
You, who has lost your husband, wife, loved one, friend, colleague, acquaintance or even a stranger you saw killed, but didn’t really know. But you care because you are part of humanity. You are always on our minds.
You, who got killed or murdered in legally unjustifiable circumstances, lying cold, beneath six feet of earth, or maybe in an unmarked grave. You are always on our minds. We will continue to speak for you, being a voice for the dead. To hold people accountable and ensure that your loved ones do not lack any good thing.
You, who is being oppressed by a stronger foe, and unable to help or defend yourself. We always think of you. Do not give up. Keep fighting for justice. Conquer your fear. Believe that there are still good people out there. Sooner than later, help will get to you.
You, who is being dispossessed of your property. Maybe you and your husband struggled to purchase them during his lifetime, as you both planned to live there together till your dying days, but death snatched him away..too quickly. Now, the relations cruelly want you and the children out. You are always on our minds. We will not abandon you. There will be a brighter day tomorrow!
You, in that lonely Cell or Prison, detained (particularly) for a crime that you didn’t commit. Like Biblical Joseph, no one believed you were innocent. Even though you were constitutionally innocent, but the law peremptorilly presumed you guilty. You think you are alone, helpless, forgotten. But rest assured that you are not alone, or helpless. You are always on our minds. We are always thinking of how to reach you. How to help you.
You who has not paid your house rent, or school fees or your children’s school fees or maybe there is no food on your table. You think the future is bleak. No one cares for you. But you are always on our minds. We are always thinking of how to help. Don’t give up yet. Hang in there.
We also think of you. Yes. you. Human rights Activist. All those times when you sacrificed greatly to help somebody out, but no one noticed. You gave your time, maybe your energy, or your hard earned money. Maybe even risked your life. No cameras took your pictures. No one gave you an ovation, no award, not even a cheer. You sometimes think no one remembers. Even the people you helped seem to have forgotten. No, Sir. No Ma. We have not forgotten you. You are always on our minds.
Then you, the learned Judge or Magistrate. The case came before you. You were contacted by the seeming powerful or mighty Defendant. They offered you money, or promotion or favour, just to give unrighteous judgment. You really could have used that money, or that promotion or that favour. But you painfully declined. You followed your heart and gave right judgment. But no one celebrated you thereafter. Even the poor winner of the case never stopped by to say thank you. You think you have been forgotten. But, No, sir. No, Ma. You are always on our minds. We think of you always.
In the final analysis, you are always on our minds. We do what we do today to empower you to help somebody else tomorrow. Who knows who may need your help tomorrow?. So, today, you are on our minds. Always!.
These are the lessons that Chief Gani Fawehinmi (SAN) taught us before he died.
(Dele Igbinedion Esquire is a Lawyer and the Principal Partner of ‘Dele Igbinedion Chambers’. He can be reached on Tel/Whatsapp 08059863558)
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