By Simon Imobo-Tswam
Alh. Abubakar Tsav, retired police commissioner, is gone. Death took him today. He was Kunav son, a Benue son and a son of Nigeria. I remember him for his many parts.
He was a police man, but he told the truth! He was a real man.
He was an elder, but he refused to be a stakeholder! He was a great man.
He was a superior police officer, but he loved journalists! He was a hero.
He could have done it too, but he refused to see Government House, Makurdi, as his Pension Office! He was a different man.
He had the means, but he didn’t pay touts to cyber-assassinate detractors! He was a real man.
If you offended him, he took on you himself! He had his own style.
He was a big man, but he didn’t wear airs like clothes! He was not a man to wear borrowed clothes.
No matter the pressure, he always answered calls to his phone! He was different there too.
He was, perhaps, the only member of his generation who was IT-savvy, and who maintained an active social media presence almost to the end of his tether here.
And what was his major concern? Good governance! He didn’t talk to be noticed or settled. If there was anything like table manners – it was not for him!
And, although he was hard, very hard, on corruption and her hard-working agents, he was a man with a social conscience. We were once neighbours in Demekpe, so I knew him well.
And he was a good neighbour too…good in a very practical way. Once, when I was under pressure, he gave me N100,000! That was (and is) a big deal. And he gave me the money where no visitor would see it. See, he was a quiet philanthropist – not a photoanthropist. I
mourn him, personally, so.
Was he a perfect man? No. Did he fight perfectly? No. Were his strategies perfect? No. But then, the system within which he stood to make a case for justice and accountability, was an imperfect one too.
Kunav, Vandeikya, Zone A, Benue and, indeed, Nigeria, have lost a public activist, anti-corruption crusader, a good governance advocate and statesman.
Alh. Abubakar Tsav, my father, my neighbour and my fellow-crusader, may Allah grant your soul eternal rest…I pray this prayer in Jesus’ Name.