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Alhaji Gambo Muazu (Durbin Katagum) – Sunset At Prime

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Mohammed Umar, Bauchi

When I saw calls coming to my phone from my sister and brother, Mariya Babayo and Sadeeq Babayo Mustapha all at once, and despite not picking because I was in a meeting, but kept calling back, I knew something was wrong. I immediately went outside the room and asked Sadeeq what was wrong.

My heart was already heavy.
He asked whether I heard the bad news? I said what bad news?

At that moment, my heart was already beating faster than usual.

He said Durbi is dead. I asked who is Durbi? He said Durbin Katagum. I said haba this is not true. He said it was true because it was his his wife who broke the news to him and she was crying. His wife is a close relative of the late Durbi.
That minute we spoke was one of the worst moments of my life.

I immediately felt like I had been hit with a sledge hammer on my head. Then calls started coming in confirming my fears. It was the first time in a long time that I cried like a baby. I locked my office door and spent close to 30 minutes crying on my visitors chair.

When I went down to pray Asr in the office mosque, I was performing ablution and crying profusely to the amazement of staff and several visitors who were wondering what happened to me. I cried during the prayers as well that the person praying next to me was virtually holding my hands comforting me to take it easy. The tears was the only thing making me feel better at that material time.

I immediately went to inform my boss on what happened and the need to take some days off to travel for the funeral. I was crying profusely as I spoke to her, she consoled me offering me tissue paper to wipe my tears away.

He was not only my senior brother and mentor, I was his confidant and he had confidence in my judgement and valued the respect I had for him. I came to understand the depth of his heart and he came to appreciate the depth of my loyalty to him.

Whenever I was free, I drove to his office to pay my respect to him and his close friend, Tata Shekarau Omar and we usually spent hours talking about how our societies had deteriorated and the role we could individually play to ameliorate the terrible situations of our people. His office became the secretariat for our meetings, all in an effort to play our part to the benefit of our society.

He mentored me on how to be our brothers and sisters keepers and how our late elders had placed our community on a high moral pedestal of integrity, dignity and mutual respect, and the need for us to sustain and be the keepers of such a beautiful legacy.

He retired last year from public service, but he transited to the next service of philanthropy, generosity and humanitarianism that is unprecedented of any human being that I associated with. I can confidently say this, Alhaji Muhammad Gambo Muazu (Durbin Katagum) is one of the most humble, down-to-earth and accessible personalities that I had ever had the privilege of interacting with in my life.

His infectious humility and good character, his ever smiling face and patience, his friendly disposition to his elders and subordinates, his charisma, his voice of moderation on issues are usually not attributes that are associated with people of his standing and disposition in a contemporary society like ours. No wonder people alleged for so long a time, that he was too good for this our current times and people like him don’t last long.

He played a major role in trying to see that everyone no matter the person’s background, creed or tribe was given a fair shot in life. His death jolted our community that everyone both the young and old were crying and consoling each other with everyone telling their stories of their experiences with him, and the interventions he had in their lives with a smiling face no matter how many times you came back dangling your problems to him.

He was intelligent, resourceful, well endowed in terms of material things, the ultimate Good looking fellow like the fulani aristrocat that he was, but one of the simplest individuals and the best father anyone could wish for and have.

Our community had lost a lot of our committed and revered personalities, but they mustly died at old age, due to old age related ailments. Durbi’s death was more shocking and devastating because of the circumstances it happened (Fatal car accident) and the fact that he was relatively young and was not known to be suffering from any illness.

He was seen in good spirits at a wedding in the Emirs Palace less than two weeks before his death. His death is excruciatingly painful because people like him come once in a generation. He was the full package whose childhood friends attested that they couldn’t remember the last time they saw him angry no matter the level of provocation.

His funeral attracted thousands of people from far and near, with people crying profusely over his loss, confused and wondering when they would ever see someone with such attributes and exceptional qualities from the community again. You can only try your best to enumerate his contributions to the well-being of the people, but it is impossible to cover or list his crucial and critical interventions in one single material.

The people you fed without knowing who they were, will be the witnesses of your goodwill in this world in shaa Allah.

The people you sheltered and provided decent accommodation for, so that they live with dignity and pride, will attest to your benevolence spirit on the day of judgment in shaa Allah.

The widows and vulnerable children that you bought clothes for to enable them celebrate during the Sallah celebrations, will bear witnesses to your intervention at their distressing moments on the day you will need it most in shaa Allah.

The hundreds of sick people that could not afford to pay their medical bills but you paid for them, will be there for you on the day when only your good deeds is relevant in shaa Allah.

The testimonies of people at your graveside with people of all backgrounds supplicating to God to have mercy on you because of the positive impact you made in their lives, had been recorded in your good deeds in shaa Allah.

My condolences to the Emir of Katagum, his family, people of Katagum, Bauchi State and Nigeria as a whole for this incalculable, immeasurable and irreparable loss.

May Allah The Giver And The Exterminator of life grant Gambo Muazu, Durbin Katagum, eternal peace accorded the best of God’s servants and give us the fortitude, though painful, to bear his permanent absence in this world, until the time when our contract with this ephemeral and transient world has come to an end and we join him In shaa Allah! Ameen!!!

Alh.Bello Mustapha
(Kogunan Katagum)

NEWS

Tinubu Mourns Ex-Minister, Ogbonnaya Onu

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President Bola Tinubu has extended his deepest condolences to the Onu family over the passing of Chief Ogbonnaya Onu, a former Minister of Science and Technology in the Buhari administration.

Chief Onu passed away on Thursday at the age of 72.

“The President mourns a luminous star in Nigeria’s political firmament.

The first civilian governor of Abia State; former minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, a principal draughtsman in the founding of the All Progressives Congress (APC), and a valiant partner in the victory of the party in the 2015 elections.
 

“Most importantly, the President celebrates the life of an accomplished scholar, first-class engineer; a man of proven integrity; defiant to indiscipline, but ever yielding to the highest standards of rectitude,” a statement by Chief Ajuri Ngelale, Presidential spokesman quoted the President to have said.

The statement said Tinubu affirmed that the late Onu epitomized Nigeria in concord; in wholeness, as the late statesman believed in and defended Nigeria’s unity, advocated peace, and promoted fellowship across the Niger.

The President also condoled with the friends and associates of Chief Onu, Ebonyi and Abia State Governments, and all Nigerians grieving this gaping loss.

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Business News

Geregu Power Earns N50.4bn From Electricity Sales, Capacity Charges 

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By Tony Obiechina, Abuja 

Geregu Power Plc has generated N50.4bn on electricity sales and capacity charges to Nigerians in the first quarter of 2024.

The power company which is the first listed power company of the Nigerian Exchange Ltd disclosed the performance in its Q1, 2024 financial statement.

The company grew its Q1 revenue by 225 per cent from N14.

2bn in 2023 to N50.
4bn in 2023.

A breakdown reveals that Geregu Power sold energy worth N31bn and received N19bn as revenue from capacity charge.

Recall that the power company posted an annual revenue of N82.9bn in the full year of 2023 but it has covered half of the amount in Q1.

The revenue was above the company’s forecast for Q1 2024 when it projected its revenue to rise to N31.24bn.

Geregu Power recorded a profit before tax of N21.9bn up from the N5.3bn recorded in Q1 of last year, reflecting 307.8 per cent growth.

During the period underreview, the company saw its profit after tax rose by 307.3 per cent to N14.46bn from N3.54bn recorded in Q1 of last year. In the full year 2023, the company made N16.1bn net profit.

The net profit was above the company projection of N5.5bn. 

Geregu Power took an income tax charge of N7.43bn, up from the N1.8bn in Q1 2023. The tax charges were higher than the N2.7bn projected for Q1 2024.

The company also spent N21.5bn on the cost of sales involving gas supply and transportation, up from the N6.6bn spent on gas supply and transportation in Q1 2023.

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Foreign News

U.S. not Expecting to be Drawn into War but Predicts Attack by Iran Against Israel

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The United States expects an attack by Iran against Israel but one that would not be big enough to draw Washington into war, a U.S. official said late on Thursday.

The White House said earlier that Washington did not want conflict to spread in the Middle East and the U.S. had told Iran it was not involved in an air strike against a top Iranian military commander in Damascus.

The White House added it warned Iran to not use that attack as a pretext to escalate further in the region.

Suspected Israeli warplanes bombed Iran’s embassy in Damascus on Monday in a strike for which Iran has vowed revenge and in which a top Iranian general and six other Iranian military officers were killed, ratcheting up tension in a region already strained by the Gaza war.

Iranian sources told Reuters that Tehran has signalled to Washington that it will respond to Israel’s attack on its Syrian embassy in a way that aims to avoid major escalation and it will not act hastily, as Tehran presses demands including a Gaza truce.

The United States has been on high alert about possible retaliatory strikes from Iran and U.S. envoys have been working to lower tensions.

Palestinian Islamist group Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, killing 1,200, according to Israeli tallies.

Israel’s military assault on Hamas-governed Gaza has since killed more than 33,000 people according to the local health ministry, displaced nearly all of Gaza’s 2.3 million population, caused a humanitarian crisis, and led to genocide allegations that Israel denies.

Iran-backed groups have declared support for Palestinians, waging attacks from Lebanon, Yemen, and Iraq.

Tehran has avoided direct confrontation with Israel or the United States, while declaring support for its allies. (Reuters/NAN)

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