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Wednesday , 23 January 2019

Mallam Yusuf Buratai: A Eulogy To A Good Man And a Soldier’s Soldier for The Present Generation Who Knew him not….. by Odeyemi Oladimeji

Mallam Yusuf Buratai, the father of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Yusufu Buratai, passed away peacefully in Maiduguri in the morning of Friday 9th of February and he has since been buried according to Muslim rights…

The late Mallam Yusuf Buratai, is survived by 14 children, including the chief of Army Staff and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

He was a teacher {Mallam} of all things. His method was simple. He taught by example. At any age, when faced with an ethical dilemma, after reflection, study, or even rationalization, he found himself laying his life on the line by joining the army of the day in the 1940s to fight against the evil that Hitler’s Nazis, represent.

His character invariably became the foundation of his children’s conscience.

The late Mallam Yusuf Buratai, was a self-made and self-reliant. From his humble background to his education to his career, from his skill with every kind of people that could be likened to that of a community leader, the late Mallam engaged with the world as a man who would be its shaper and master.

Never a stingy man, loyal, and pragmatic, even when the nation Nigeria was just budding, Mallam Yusuf Buratai joined the colonial army and fought in the Second World War.

His faithfulness to the important people in his life could be seen in the way he steadfastly maintained ties with his childhood friends and his immediate family of 14 successful children and extended family running into hundreds.

In an era in which it is popular to make wrongful assessment of those not in the present generation, it becomes yet another burden on the nation not to remember the heroes past, as Mallam Yusuf Buratai was such a loyal and steadfast believer in the Nigerian venture as he duly contributed his own quota toward her development.

In using his example as a Soldier long before Nigeria gained independence and encouraging his own son to go into the Army, a conviction from father passed on to son is particularly a worthy legacy to bequeath to a nation that has benefited immensely in the capacity of the Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu  Buratai the son, in winning the war against the Boko Haram Terror and other forms of insurgency  in these present times.

In determining a father’s worth, a father is a man who expects his son to be as good a man as he meant to be….And that was just how much of a father is in General Buratai who unashamedly has maintained the great influence his late father had  on him and in his career as a soldier.

The process of teaching and mentoring really is this, to be able to lead to success those coming behind. It’s a human exercise, not a numbers game, this generation must and should therefore honor the Mallam Yusuf Buratai they knew not, but his influence, his legacies are here with us.

Mallam Yusuf Buratai valued nothing more than education but could not afford to finish his own. That he was considered good enough by the British to serve in the colonial Royal army was good enough.

He worked many jobs, to feed his family, swearing that he would ensure his children were fully educated. He did all that in his modest Maiduguri environment.

We are here today to remember the life and legacy he leaves on the earth.  It was a long and simple life: never complex and always with good, honest intentions.

In reflecting on the life of the late Mallam, I’ll preach Virtue, Morals, Simplicity and Steadfastness. These are elusive Noble ideals, but still our best allies yet if we must truly build a great nation out of Nigeria, we must therefore remember the lives of our heroes past and make sure we follow their enviable examples..

Adieu, Mallam Yusuf Buratai, a simple life, he lived in the shadows, but he filled his son’s world with light.
Comrade Oladimeji Odeyemi,  the President of the National Committee of Yoruba Youth (NCYY)  sent this piece from Ibadan.

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