Since July 22, the people of Ekureku, Abi Local Government Area of Cross River State have been very sad. They are mourning the death of a man they see as life saver, a philanthropist of the highest order, Mr Sam Ele Asebe, who died at the unripe age of 48.
According to reports, Asebe, known for his humane mien and kind heartedness, died in the early hours of the day while trying to exercise himself, as he always did every morning, just to keep fit. On that day, he had gone for the walk-out without his coach and nobody thought that death was lurking around. He did not return home alive, despite efforts by medical experts to revive and bring him back to life.
When the news of his passage hit his village in Ekureku, widows, young men and women, the aged and all the people who depended on him went into tears. The hundreds of people that he took off the streets and empowered, as well as the scores of students who had the opportunity of going to school courtesy of the late philanthropist wept and nearly killed themselves.
It is about three weeks now since his death and clearly, life is never the same for Ekureku people. A good number of them are yet to recover from the shock, among them, a member of the House of Representatives, Dr Alex Egbona, who said in a recent interview that the late Asebe was a major pillar in the drive to build, rebuild and settle the land and people of Ekureku.
His burial has however been fixed for September 25, but there are lessons derivable from his sudden death. Could it be that he went beyond the extent of fitness exercise he ought to have undertaken on that day? Or apart from the fitness exercise, are there other factors that may have contributed to his death-man made or otherwise? Is it possible that human beings would have contributed to his death?
There have been questions and more questions. But like a pastor once said about Asebe’s death, life is unpredictable. Those he left behind at home that morning never ever thought he would not return. But such is life.
His passage is a reminder of the fact that we came into the world naked and would return with nothing. Those who have been crying since July 22 are doing so because they remember Asebe for his investment in the life of people. Even if he lived for just 48 years, the impact he made in the life of people has been impactful and palpable.
So what happens after now? Mr Asebe has gone and never to return. how will his legacies of kindness and large heartedness be sustained? This is where his friends and associates come in. This is where all those who once benefitted from him come in. They have the duty to make sure that they sustain his good works and even more.
It is therefore our thinking that all those who love Asebe take some extra steps to ensure that his good name lives on. They should ensure that his own family does not suffer, neither should all the widows and orphans who lived on Asebe’s generosity be allowed to cry forever.
The life of Asebe on earth may have been very short, but it was very eventful.
May God strengthen the family, preserve all those who depended on him for survival and also comfort all Ekureku people as they prepare for his burial.
May his soul rest in peace.