Dr Chike Akunyili, was the widower of Prof. Dora Akunyili, former DG of NAFDAC, and Minister of Information, who succumbed to cancer some years back.
Dr Chike was the surviving parent to their children. Unfortunately and regrettably, he was murdered execution-style by some unknown gunmen two days ago.
His murder is deeply troubling, senseless, and despicable.
Dr Chike was not a politician and was not known for holding and expressing toxic political views on any issue.
He was murdered by blood thirsty hounds with questionable motives.
Equally troubling is the attitude of those who witnessed his murder and did nothing to help him while he was on the ground twitching in the throes of death. They chose to record a video of his traumatic last minutes and posted it on social media in satisfaction of their desire for morbid entertainment.
Our humanity has been diminished and we have become desensitized to horror like ISIS blood baying crowd.
My deepest condolences to the children, grand children, and the extended members of the Akunyili family. Chike and Dora lived lives of impact and touched their generation. Their works will not be forgotten. Be consoled in the fact they lived their lives touching others.
Not so for those who murdered Dr Chike. They have murdered a beautiful soul and they will pay a huge price here or hereafter in the hands of God, the righteous judge.
Information available suggest that Dr Akunyili may have been a victim of mistaken identity -- meaning he was assumed to be another person.
If that is the case, it is even more troubling because it speaks to the deadly and evil temperament of the unknown gunmen. How could they kill a man -- a final act -- that cannot be reversed without being sure of his identity?
It is my considered opinion that the theory of mistaken identity, is a ruse.
They set out to murder him and to gain attention and notoriety for their cause -- whatever it maybe.
His killers must be fished out and punished according to the law.
Nothing justifies this senseless murder and resort to lawlessness. The South East of Nigeria cannot be surrendered to unknown murderers no matter the cause they are pursuing.
The SE is a gateway to and fro other parts of Nigeria; it cannot be ceded to terror distributors we have in the NE and NW of the country. Dr Chike’s death and that of Ahmed Gulak, the Anglican pastor, and others, are a wake-up call on the government to do all it takes to secure the South East.
No one is saying there are no reasons for people of the SE to be angry; there are tens and possibly hundreds of reasons to be angry and aggrieved, but waylaying and killing people who do not control the government and may not do more than hold and express contrary opinions, is not and cannot be the solution to the problems.
The people you are killing are victims of the same system you are fighting against. You cannot kill your way to success. It will take more than violence to achieve your purpose -- whatever it is.
Leaders of the SE must come together and confront this evil. Silence is not a way out; neither is hot rhetoric.
The future of the SE is at stake.
Everything is at the risk of collapsing.
The killing of Igbos in the name of resistance by fellow Igbos must stop now. All those involved in divisive and incendiary rhetoric must pull back and encourage peaceful conversation.
Violence is a double-edged sword.
It is possible to demolish a house creatively and salvage a few useful things. It is also possible to burn down the same house in anger and salvage nothing out of it.
Nigeria may look useless and hopeless to some, but she is all we have and can call our own.
We can make her work for all, and if we can’t, as some are saying, we can creatively demolish her and not burn her down.