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The day I met Dr Midvale Usman Balami 

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The day I met Dr Midvale Usman Balami 

By Collins Mbakwe

Ceteris paribus, Dr Midala Usman Balami will be standing for an election under the Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP) to represent Askira Uba/ Hawul federal constituency in the 2023 general elections.

That fateful day in July 2020, I had gone to the University of Maiduguri for a friend’s birthday. I got carried away from interesting discussions I was having with my friends after the birthday party. I hardly had realized how the afternoon had flown. I got gutted when it began to drizzle. Shortly, I hurried out of my friend’s house, trekking to the school’s gate.

I did get to the gate but was not lucky enough to get a Keke rider or a lift to take me to the Post Office area. I walked a bit far away from the gate while waiting for a cab. I stopped halfway to gate one. Beside me were two well-dressed girls. They were also waiting to get a Keke or a lift to the Post Office. Shortly, a car pulled to a halt and offered to give them a lift. They hopped in at once. I looked pleadingly, but the man did not show any sign of noticing me. “Man’s inhumanity against man,” I muttered as he zoomed off.

Then, before I could say, Jack Robison, a whirlwind accompanied by a sandstorm and a reef of clouds and lightning raced across the skies. My hands were quivering, and my mind wasn’t far behind. In trepidation, I looked up and saw the storm spilling like rivers of blackened blood from the clouds, blotting out any sign of the sun and covering the roofs of the town in broad day darkness.

That sent a chill down my spine With my hands, I quickly cut off a sagging neem tree branch nearby, to use its leaf as an umbrella, but the rain in its fierceness, immediately tore it into shreds. At that moment, I tried to speed up since I was already drenched, but I was consumed with fear and walked with leaden feet, chased by the rain. Moments, I scurried for safety, as I took refuge in a store across the road, trying to collect my thoughts and decide what to do next. Subsequently, a clap of thunder roared close by, and I felt the thunderbolt underneath my feet.

There was scarcely a soul on the road. I felt completely out of sorts and imagined why on earth it should rain by that day. Still thinking, as though the weather had something to prove that day, the darkness of the total blackout, spread more with a fetid smell that rose from obviously a decomposed animal near the road. It was as if we were about to experience an eclipse of the sun. The day became opaque, impenetrable, as the rain folded the town in its shroud.

Minutes later, the rain subsided. By then I had completely gotten drenched to the skin. Goosebumps were all over my skin. Yet, there was no cab in sight. One good thing was that my phone was saved, as I wrapped up well with nylon. For a considerable length of time, I got rooted to the spot, quivering like an epileptic patient, clenching and clattering my teeth repeatedly as my wait for a cab continued.

It was at that moment that a car pulled to a halt in front of me. In a fit of rage, I threw my eyes away, wondering why the owner should choose to stop at my front. Immediately, the man wound down his glass and asked me where I was going. I told him. He offered to ply the Post Office route even though he was going towards the Madgnari area. “My name is Dr. Balami,” he revealed as we drove along. I was full of appreciation for his kind gesture and sacrifice to me ( someone he hasn’t seen before).

Months later, I got hard hit by tragedy. I was bereaved. That almost led me to depression. My friend and brother, Hon. Tanimu became my saving grace. As soon as he realized that I was gradually losing it, he took me to his friend to help proffer a solution to my pitiable condition. He told me nice things about the friend while we were on our way. I was shocked when we got there and behold, it was the same Dr. Balami that gave me a lift. He didn’t recognize me but I did and I reminded him.

He empathize with me and quickly recommended me to his friend at the Neuro-psychiatric Hospital. I was properly taken care of with all expenses paid by him and my friend, Tanimu.

Thereafter, I began to learn a lot about him. I began to understand that he is a rare gem. I learned that he is kind and personified.

You talk about a man who has carved a niche for himself, a man whose humanity, humility, and sagacity are uncommon, Dr. Balami tops the chart. If you talk about a man whose milk of human kindness, transparency, amazing social clout, and doggedness has earned admiration from Nigerians, then you must be referring to Dr Balami.

Dr Midala Usman Balami had his primary school education at Ungwar Hussaini Primary School, Shaffer, Hawul LGA, Borno State. After obtaining the First School Leaving Certificate, he proceeded to Government Senior Science Secondary School, Biu LGA, Borno State where he asserted himself as one of the top members of his class.

As an ambitious young man whose love for education is unrivalled, he proceeded to the University of Maiduguri where he read Veterinary Medicine, thereby becoming a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, recording distinctions in Anatomy, Pathology, and Physiology in the process.

Dr Balami would later obtain Masters degree in Health Planning, Administration and Management, Masters’s degree in Disaster Risk Management and Development Studies.

For those who have come in contact with Dr Balami, his rise to greatness, his track records, and the admiration he enjoyed from people, are not happenstance. But a result of diligence, honesty, and hard work.

Dr Balami has an articulated outstanding eight years of working with different International Organizations including UNFPA on different protection and Health programs coordination and implementation with special emphasis on protection issues, Gender Based Violence, and Reproductive Health, including maternal and child health.

Dr Balami’s life has been characterized by giving back to society and rendering selfless service to humanity. He has for the past many years demonstrated his penchant for improving humanity. His uncommon ambition, his vision, and exemplary life ideals have become a great inspiration for many Nigerian youths.

Dr Balami Participated in the global Clinical Management of rape Training of trainers (TOT) through virtual means. He was Facilitator at the GBViE two weeks course in American University of Nigeria Clinical Management of rape/MISP certified trainer in 2017.

He also Participated in the National Stop Transmission of Poliomyelitis Training program (Nigeria) Course Organized by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention. Atlanta USA.

A man such as Dr Balami who is a natural philanthropist, visionary, intellectually mobile, and honest, deserves to be saddled with the responsibility of representing his people, Hawul/Askira Uba Constituency at the national lower legislative chamber. Keeping in mind his untainted record and human capital development, votes for Dr Balami will be votes for effective representation.

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