Friday, March 11, 2016

Israel Kabonye

Onwu bu onye oshi! O zulu oyi!

Israel Kabonye!  He had a protracted illness.  He is now asleep!

I am yet to find a fellow native who complained that Israel Kabonye had an axe to grind with them (him/her).  Perhaps there was someone who nursed a grudge against him, but not the other way round.  I reckoned with him as a jolly fellow – always aiming to be at peace with everyone.

Israel Kabonye had such a focused look as someone looking intently toward a goal.  Yes, you could see this from his calm and smooth face.  He was indeed a fine gentleman.  He looked too youthful for his age of 59.  That could be an indication that he had a happy home.

Israel Kabonye went on to his final rest Monday, 15 February, at about 8 pm in his Ketu residence. It was good enough that fellow natives in the neighbourhood summoned themselves and braced up to do the needful.  They proved that they were true-born of Owerre-Olubor in that noble act.

The ancient man Job, in his travails, asked the question: ‘If a man dies, will he live again?’ (14:14)  Now let us come down to our present circumstance and plight and then ask: “Can Israel Kabonye live again?”  If your answer is “Yes,” as Job himself implied in his latter statements, then we can take it that the fine gentleman is asleep and that the One who is the “resurrection and the life” (Jn 11:25) can bring him up in the New World.  Therefore, though we may mourn, let us keep this glorious hope in view!

As the late Israel Kabonye is being interred today, may I echo the dirge, “O wutele ayin …!” –
O wutele ayin,
          wutele ayin,
          wutele ayin;

O wutele ayin,
          mgbe ayin nulu ’ya.

Frank Monye
Umuikpulu: Fr1day, 11 March 2016