An Eid Visit to Zaria
Visitations are part of the Eid celebrations and I visited my brother and friend, Dr. Isa Waziri, at his residence at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Staff Quarters. Isa Waziri lost four (4) children during the inhuman massacre by the Nigerian army that took place last December. I met him with a brother who was later introduced to me as Saadu Maigoro.
Isa Waziri sent for his wife to be informed of my presence. Twenty years ago during the courtship of this couple, we were still students at the University and I was the “main escort” of my friend whenever he wanted to visit his wife-to-be. We then settled down for discussion and the monumental feast that is to come.
My friend informed me that brother Saadu Maigoro was also affected during the ZariaMassacre by the Nigerian army. The wife, two sons and a son-in-law of brother Saadu Maigoro were all murdered by the Nigerian army in the ZariaMassacre. His two other sons are among the 191 members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) that are imprisoned in the Kaduna central prison and are facing dead sentence. I look at this brother that wicked oppressors had visited so much tragedy upon, I was lost of words from where to start my condolences. He look at me and smiled, the smile to reassure me that he understand my predicament.
The Lady of the house then interrupted by starting the long journey of dispatching the unending chain of food coolers and assorted beverages. Then the president of the Academic Forum of IMN (AFIMN), brother Shuaibu Isa Ahmad, emerged from the house to join us in the canopy where we were seated. He declared that this was his first time of seeing me live but our host corrected him that he saw me twenty years ago but he was too young to remember. The AFIMM president is a tireless Islamic worker & a capable organizer.
Then while we were battling with our feast Prof. Isah M landed with his car. The last time we met was in 1998 when I passed the night in his room at the post-graduate Quarters of the University on my way to Kebbi State for my National Service. The re-union was beyond words that I forgot to condole him for the murder of his daughter by the Nigerian army in ZariaMassacre.
We all settled down to try to do the impossible and that is to “conquer” the chains of dishes in front of us. Then discussions and analysis started on various range of topics to try to catch up with all the time missed. It was a great pleasure tobe in the company of prof. Isah M again, a great brother in every ramification. When we were at the University as undergraduates, we were stubborn revolutionaries while he at that time was at the University for his post-graduate program and will always tampered our naked Idealism with Realism and sound reasoning.
While we were in deep discussion then brother Ali Musa landed with his family and joined the feast of festival of the end of the Ramadan fast. The mutual affection, love and respect that that congregation generated can not be put in words, that congregation was the true manifestation of real brotherhood despite the tragedy of the ZariaMassacre is still fresh in all our hearts.
The ZariaMassacre was a trial from God and we are honored to be subjected to such trial from God. The wicked, evil and bloodthirsty Nigerian oppressors that murdered 1000+ of our love ones and dumped their dead bodies in mass graves did what they did to break our will but the exact opposite is what resulted.
We had to force ourselves to break that congregation due to other pending appointments and meetings. But Prophet Muhammad (sa) had spoken the truth that visits to loved ones increases love and brotherliness. Sadly the encroachment of Western civilization in our societies have increased individualism among Muslims, this is a negative development that should be reversed.
On a final note, Muslims should use this festive holiday season to visit their loved ones and exchange gifts as such gesture will increase the bond of brotherhood and friendship. To the respected brothers and sisters that I met today, May God congregate us in Paradise with the most beloved of God – Muhammad al-Mustafa (sa)!