A book to immortalize Toba-the murdered son of ace female sports presenter, Aisha Falode was recently launched in Lagos. As family members, friends and sympathisers converge to launch the book, Gift of Grace in honour of Toba Tyler Falode who was murdered in Dubai exactly a year ago, humanity is confronted with a major question. Of what value or honour is the beauty of a land proclaimed in the far corners of the world for humanity to taste & flourish, but is without justice for the alien? With the pain of a future wasted, a mother tortured and a nation in anguish, we wonder if the real Dubai is not a frightening city, hiding behind a facade of beauty. Today, the vanity of ‘Dubai’ stares us in the face and the worthlessness of its beauty laid bare, without justice for Toba.
If 2015 had come for him, a good birthday bash is what Toba, his friends and families would have wished this period. But this young promising Nigerian was cut down in his prime in a bizarre circumstance enmeshed in a deep conspiracy. This is no intention to subject his death to another public scrutiny, but a land that wants to flourish further and endures, will understand the consequences of having its land consume innocent blood without justice. The heavens will stand for Toba and only justice well deserved will do for this cause.
As this book is launched in the tender memory of Toba in the city of Lagos, let the city of Dubai arise to seek justice and do the needful. The blood of Toba will never pass for another death in Dubai, no matter how long it may take. For humanity, it is like the popular mantra of the comrades, ‘an injury to one is an injury to all.’ Toba is not only the casualty of the terror in the land of Dubai. In the reasoning of John Pepper Clarke (in his poem - The Casualties); the mother of Toba, Aisha Falode, the immediate family members, close friends and indeed all those who believe in justice for humanity are casualties of the dastardly act against Toba Tyler Falode.
Where do we go from here? Certainly Toba was not the first victim of this kind of crime against Nigerians abroad and may not be the last. From Dubai to Ukraine; Malaysia to Singapore and some other countries, we have seen much hostility and outright abuse against Nigerians. Unfortunately, the globalization of knowledge has made it expedient for people to seek knowledge across frontiers and in foreign lands irrespective of a country’s standard of education. Though, it is bad in Nigeria, as several students are forced to seek a better alternative to a low standard of education.
While the whole world must rise up in unity to end this disaster, it will not be out of place if Nigerians can adopt May 19th every year to rally the global communities to protect the interest of foreign students in any nation. This struggle must start from somewhere. The insistence on justice for Toba could help to trigger global justice for other victims who may not even have the voice. In law of natural justice, the best way to protect one-self is to defend others. What goes around surely comes around. Let us stand for Toba Tyler Falode and proclaim May 19th as Foreign Students Justice Day.
#BloodofTobaOnDubai #JusticeForTylerFray #GiftofGrace