Monday, July 30, 2007

RIP Sam Famakinwa

It is with great pain and regret that I write about the passing of Samuel Famakinwa the Deputy Editor of This Day Newspaper Nigeria. Death is in my mind a fulfillment of Life but in Sam's case born in 1971 it seems quite an early curtain call. I met Sam at one of my leadership workshops in Lagos, my friend and co-traveller Olasupo Shasore SAN now the Attorney General of Lagos State coerced him to take out time on a saturday or was it a public holiday to join us. We had a blast. Sam was not the usual cynical journalist, he seemed comfortable amongst the powerful and equally challenging of their position. I remember his banter with Joke Giwa now Country Head of MoneyGram Nigeria then just ex of MTN. Their back and forth about who is the Lagos Big boy and Girl carrying the edge of the hunter and prey without the rancor that would have attended such interaction in less seasoned hands.

Sam brought both intellect and wit to our deliberations making him someone I sought out anytime I was in Lagos usually by a phone call and even sometimes by email nothing quite regular . The Nigerian press is quite a personalized industry in which the analysis of major events are reduced to the personalities of the players. Sam's earlier beat on the Corporate side seemed to give him a more systematic view. Now he is part of the great dust that blows across the continent, he is the brushing wind and the blazing sun, part of the droplets of rain and the pounding waves. Sam is like many of those who die early a piece of powerful poetry that we will only decipher over time. My sincere condolence and humble appreciation for a honorable person and a true Nigerian.

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