So that year, Tejuosho was gutted by fire. I was far removed. It did not hit home. I did not connect. I visited tejuosho market monthly. But after the fire I did not bother.
I was also very busy with production of programs.
So I did not need to do Tejuosho.
Then three months after I was being a good boss and thought to drop my staff where she could get an easy bus closer to home.
I drove into the Tejuosho market road from the rear end of the rail line.
As I saw the ruins a heavy dread enveloped me. I wept deeply . I saw years and decades of lost toil, sweat and sacrifice.
I remembered the shops. My ” customers” as we called each other.
Customer” a common term used by either sellers or buyers to establish a common repeated purchase and better bargain between both during transactions. ( Naija lingo)
I had plenty customers. I was also customers to many.
From when I shopped during maternity for baby’s things. The mother care shops and wannabe shops.
When I needed to furnish. The curtain fabric section. Needed to upholster the furnishings were there. Poles and brilliant tassels.
Last minute wedding things.
When I needed to dazzle my friends and keep then guessing where the shoes or bags and clothes were. I went to “Okrika” now christened “Bendown boutique”. Aka second hand market.
When I needed to bake. Cook correct afang soup or banga. My customers dey.
Alhajas make up. All her products were original. (If you know what I mean)
The vases and decor shops.
My favorite shop for party favors. I loved making favors for parties then. Now who has that kinda time? Kids are all adults now.
The provisions . Ah original Brazilian cornbeef was in demand before Brazilian hair.
My customers. Yes my customers.
I cried. I cried so hard on the steering my staff felt guilty she allowed me to do this good Samaritan job of dropping her closer home.
I cried so hard I started convulsing . I parked. Cars honking impatiently or was it me that was causing the commotion. Holding up traffic. I did not care. Peoples lives have been ” held up”.
The abruptness of destruction is unfathomable. The silence and anguish and despair that follows no words can describe.
That was Tejuosho. More than ten years ago or less. Can’t remember.
How do I begin to talk about the shops that put a smile on my face anytime I walked into them.
Lagos is a cosmopolitan city and really have shops that defined the very fine lines of its cosmopolitan appeal.
The beautiful well laid out malls with its quant and dainty stores are always a sure pleasure for retail therapy and for authentic shoppers.
The stores or shops with well cultured attendants all in sync with the well arranged products on display.
Sometimes you just want to be in the shops walk round the rows of exquisite products for health well being or cosmetics. The sweet aroma keeps you staying longer you planned and sometimes you end up buying just 100 naira sweet or gum. Bet you would have done that with the corner side mallam or the traffic mobile super market boys. But no.
Being surrounded by beauty is an integral need of man. The beautiful stores in the malls did just that.
The owners went over and above while selling to you what you may need, they also thought of how you may feel. Marketing strategy 101. They got that right.
All the same I’m still trying to understand how some of these places now lie in ruins .
The loss of lives , livelihoods and Properties may be unquantified. How about the loss of hope and faith to rise from the ashes like a Phoenix?
The silence that comes after such destruction? The dark long road to recovery?
The pain that comes from the realisation that you did absolutely NOTHING WRONG.
Words indeed fail me.
I say to my “Customers” your “Customer” is waiting.
I fall with you. I walk with you at this time and will Rise with you.
Uri Ngozichukwuka is a Public Relations Consultant based in Lagos
( Dedicated to those who lost livelihoods and businesses to violence by hoodlums post #EndSars protest)
Breaking: PDP induces people to impersonate political parties, plans press conference.
Concerned citizens in Ogun state on Friday raised an alarm over the inducement of some buyable politicians by PDP governorship candidate, Hon. Ladi Adebutu.
The insider source revealed that Adebutu, who lost out in the governorship election of last Saturday, has slated a press conference where some people will impersonate the executives of the Ogun State Chapter of Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) along with few politicians claiming to be Chairmen of registered political parties, with a promise of N2 million naira each.
The press conference slated for Park Inn Abeokuta, owned by Ladi Adebutu’s father will hold any moment from now.
According to the insider source, “Ladi and his party know they cannot win at the Tribunal because they are quoting a wrong section of the Electoral Act 2022, while ignoring the relevant and applicable section of the law. That is why they are bent on inciting and inducing the public instead of going to the Tribunal”
Billionaire Bizman Femi Egbeoluwa And Wife Murdered In Lagos
The Lagos State police force has launched an investigation into the assassination of a couple in the Allen Avenue area of Ikeja Lagos state Nigeira.
Engineer Femi Matthew Egbeoluwa and his wife, Funmi were reportedly killed by unidentified gunmen who broke into their home at 1 Adefolu drive, Allen Avenue between last Friday night and early Saturday. The couple’s house workers were also attacked by the assailants, who left the wife in a pool of blood. The police spokesperson, Benjamin Hundeyin, confirmed the incident and stated that the investigation is ongoing, although no suspect has been arrested at the time of filing this report. The case has been transferred to the homicide section of the state Criminal Investigation Department, Panti, Yaba, for further investigation.
The assassination of the couple has sent shockwaves across Lagos State and has raised concerns about the safety and security of residents. The police force has assured residents that they will leave no stone unturned in their investigation and that those responsible for the crime will be brought to justice.
Engineer Femi Egbeoluwa and his wife were well-known members of their community and their deaths have been met with widespread mourning and tributes. Many have taken to social media to express their condolences to the family and to call for justice for the couple.
The incident has once again highlighted the need for improved security measures in residential areas across Lagos State. It is important for individuals and communities to take proactive steps to ensure their safety and security, such as installing security cameras, strengthening security doors and windows, and being vigilant about suspicious activities in their neighborhood.
The police force has urged anyone with information that could help with the investigation to come forward and provide assistance. It is crucial for members of the public to work together with law enforcement agencies to combat crime and ensure the safety of their communities.
The tragic assassination of Engineer Femi Matthew Egbeoluwa and his wife should serve as a wake-up call to all residents to take the issue of security seriously and work together to make Lagos State a safer place for everyone.
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