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THE PROPOSAL PART 1
It was during the 2007/2008 NYSC batch B mobilization and posting period.
I got to my school notice board, checked my name on the long lists and saw ZM as my state of primary assignment. I was surprised and disappointed to say the least because I had an opportunity of influencing my posting to any state of my choice but refused to take advantage of the opportunity. I never knew my State of posting would turn out to be Zamfara State of all states. After much encouragement from family and friends, I left for Zamfara state within the next two days to serve my father land, Nigeria. The journey to ZM was the beginning of The Proposal.
At ZM, during the three weeks in camp, I tried to influence my posting to Gusau, the state capital using some authority figures I knew then. I had a roommate in camp who wasn’t influencing her posting. She was already congratulating me in advance and feeling sorry (pity) for herself for not having anybody to help her influence her own posting to the state capita, Gusau.
Finally, the three weeks in camp was over and our places of posting for the remaining part of the service year came out. Guess what- My roommate was posted to Gusau, the state capital while I was posted to Maru Local Government Area (about 30 minutes’ drive from the state capital). I felt so disappointed and decided to confront my “posting influencers” who informed me that they became helpless upon realizing that I was a member of MDGs (Millennium Development Goals) community development (CD) group in the camp. According to them, only the executive members of the MDG CD Group had the privilege of getting posted to the state capital. Other members were posted to the other local government areas in the state. Unfortunately, I was not an executive member.
I left for Maru L.G.A with other “postees” in bus freely provided by our “senior corpers” (Batch A member). We were well received upon arrival. My residence at Maru was within the College of Education female hostel called “bar shiga” meaning no entrance (for males). I had a roommate at “bar shiga” and we lived like sisters. Portable water was very scarce commodity and the male “corpers” usually helped the ladies to fetch water from a borehole at the local government headquarters. I and my roommate however could not help but notice a particular male corps member who was always helping us to fetch water. Consequently we all became close friends. In fact we related to him like a brother and were calling him “Nwannedinamba” meaning, a brother in a foreign land.
We (I, my roommate and our Nwannedinamba) joined NCCF (Nigeria Christian Corpers Fellowship). When Batch A corps members were about to pass out, NCCF Maru zone selected new executives and I was made the Zonal Sisters’ Coordinator (popularly called “Mama”), my roommate was made the Music Director (called “Anty”) and our Nwannedinamba was made the Zonal Secretary (called “Uncle”). We also had a Zonal Coordinator, (called “Papa”) and a Prayer Coordinator (called Aduress).
As the “Mama”, I was also in charge of welfare and I gave cooked food to “Papa” and “Uncle” once in a while. After serving for almost a year and with our service almost concluding, we handed over to the next batch of corps members.
I then noticed that “Uncle’s” closeness and interest in me was becoming more obvious. Sometimes he would come and hang around “bar shiga” gate so that we could go to the market together. I realized something was seriously “cooking” when I once gave him food and he returned my food flask with well-cooked bitter leaf soup and extra bitter leaf that he washed by himself.
I was shocked to say the least. This was because for me to cook bitter leaf soup, I had to go to the state capital (Gusau) market and buy already washed bitter leaf. I could not even wash the bitter leaf I cooked with by myself during my service year. For a guy to now wash the bitter leaf by himself and even use it to cook soup for me was quite remarkable.