(By MacDonald Amaran)
“My worry here is the kids, the future of Nigeria. I expect the adults to comport themselves in a civil manner. In a situation where we are smashing people’s heads with a sacred tool which can be used for academic purposes how do we go back home to challenge our kids to come first? Don’t be surprised if they begin to smash their teacher’s head for coming second. My point is simple with due respect: The conduct of a principal officer in Rivers State House of Assembly, who assaulted his colleague with mace, is totally unacceptable. It is barbaric, cruel, uncivilised, life threatening, misleading to our kids and absolutely disappointing, a complete desecration of the great ‘white’ as a colour.”
MANY years ago I read a book in which I learnt the following: Sow a thought you will reap an act, sow an act, you will reap a habit, sow a habit, you will reap a character, sow a character you will reap a destiny. I believe I got it right pulling it out from my head after all these years. The book is titled 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey. His father, Stephen Covey, wrote the famous ‘’7 habits of highly effective people.’’ A mace is a ceremonial staff of office: a stick or rod, usually with an ornamental head, carried by officials on ceremonial occasions as a symbol of authority.
In medieval times the mace could also be a weapon as in addition to the rider wearing armour. The jousting rider’s horse was also protected by a faceplate. A steel mace, a formidable weapon, is heavy enough to crush an opponent’s skull. (Remember how one of the Alu 4’s skull was crushed and his brain popped out; that is what a mace can do on an unlucky day which a stick did to the Alu 4, how much more a rod in the name of a mace). There is a principle of law I read in the library in my university days, ‘the egg shell principle.’ You take your victim the way you see him. If you smash someone’s head and he dies the argument that he would not have died if his skull was strong is hollow and immaterial for, if you did not hit his soft skull, he would have lived. Little wonder in law generally, particularly in criminal law, the position is that a man is responsible for the probable consequence of his actions.
The history of the civic mace (carried by the sergeants-at-arms) begins in the middle of the 13th century, though no examples from that period remain today. The oldest civic mace in England (still remaining today) is that of Hedon. It was granted, along with an important charter, in 1415. At the time, ornamented civic maces were considered an infringement of one of the privileges of the King’s sergeants, who alone deserved to bear maces enriched with costly metals, according to a House of Commons petition of 1344. However, the sergeants of London later gained this privilege, as did later those of York (1396), Norwich (1403–1404), and Chester (1506). Records exist of maces covered with silver in use at Exeter in 1387–1388. Norwich bought two in 1435, and Launceston others in 1467 and 1468. Several other cities and towns subsequently acquired silver maces, and the 16th century saw almost the universal use. (See Wikipedia). The ceremonial mace is a highly ornamented staff of metal or wood, carried before a sovereign or other high official in civic ceremonies by a mace-bearer, intended to represent the official’s authority. The mace, as used today, derives from the original mace used as a weapon. Processions often feature maces, as on parliamentary or formal academic occasions.
My worry here is the kids, the future of Nigeria. I expect the adults to comport themselves in a civil manner. In a situation where we are smashing people’s heads with a sacred tool which can be used for academic purposes how do we go back home to challenge our kids to come first? Don’t be surprised if they begin to smash their teacher’s head for coming second. My point is simple with due respect: The conduct of a principal officer in Rivers State House of Assembly, who assaulted his colleague with mace, is totally unacceptable. It is barbaric, cruel, uncivilised, life threatening, misleading to our kids and absolutely disappointing, a complete desecration of the great ‘white’ as a colour. You don’t put on white and do that, your attire if nothing else should restrain you. He is the man I expect to know better the reason being that people stood under the sun to vote for him. It was a conduct certainly not fit and proper. Whatever disagreement you have or are having in the Rivers State House of Assembly please in the Lord’s name resolve it among yourselves. You are the ones who ran for elections. Politics is who gets what, when and how. There will always be lobbying in politics. It’s the reason why some stay out of it. If it favours you today be happy; if it does not favour you tomorrow still be happy because it may just favour you the day after tomorrow. Just imagine, it’s all over the internet. The little ones and teens are doing their homework. These children hear people discuss these issues. They are intelligent in some areas than some of us are. They may check these videos out. I bet you it’s the reasons why some children are terribly negatively stubborn. People are sowing wrong seeds here, there and over there.
We must desist from these kinds of dishonourable acts of smashing people’s head with an object that may be used in the procession of a formal academic ceremony. Some of us can do better. As farmers we have bought corn seeds by going to school and allowing the school go through us. We return to the farm with our hoe and cutlass to clear weeds and till the soil. As lawyers whose tools are books in the form of case law, statutes, Articles, journals, treatises, legal encyclopaedias, etc. we pursue our client’s case to a logical conclusion. As doctors, who use thermometers and scalpels, the wellbeing and good health of our patient is our goal. As engineers with the aid of Area Plan meters, callipers and micrometres, inclinometers laser measurers, measuring rod, rulers, measuring tapes and measuring wheels, we are hardworking enough even if we have to use our Lazy Tong Riveter. We want to be able to ensure our work lasts the test of time as an architect, having acquired a decent parallel bar.
To be continued.
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