Flash Light Phones: Bait for Sudden Death. By Lanre Olagunju

What else can be more axiomatic than to say that death is inevitable? One of the surest things is that whatsoever has a beginning must surely have an end. Living in a country that has succeeded in fulfilling all of the indexes of a failed state like ours, a nation with an unending intercourse with abject poverty, despite that she has no business been broke let alone been poor.  You realize that people die for all the wrong reasons in the world you don’t want to think of. How can a whole family sleep their last as a result of inhaling the fumes from their own power generating set? Don’t be too quick in bellicosity by saying ignorance was at play. What would you need a generator for; if you never knew what it means that light should blink? International bodies keep coming to our aid like a mother has got no choice but to continuously breast feed her crying and helpless baby. Little wonder why our debt keeps skyrocketing, as if someone promised a medal for the country with highest debt…it’s pretty shameful.

A wise brand like Nokia is so mindful of our malady. They aren’t in the dark to see that our power sector is in a shadow of nothing, let alone say shadow of itself. After all, we never had it rosy. Lately, I was choked with an avalanche of shock when I heard a track by the Fuji legend, Ayinde Barrister ,(don’t bug yourself if you don’t know him ask Encarta and sure, you will get help) the track revealed that far back as 1986, power supply has been  a major prayer point – “so no bi today”…

Since Nokia and other mobile phone manufacturers aren’t cripple like our leaders are in the mind, they ensured that special phones were designed for Nigerians. At lease to ease us the excruciating pain and torture that comes with darkness- I beg your pardon perpetual darkness.

Considering how merciful God is, I have a strong feeling that soon babies vacating the heavens for Nigeria will arrive at their various maternity wards with flash lights permanently glued on their foreheads. So when the breaking news comes on air, please be quick to say to someone that ‘larigold’ once prophesied it.

Exactly two nights ago, mum was close to tears as she shared a somewhat pathetic story that might be of good interest to you and without any exaggeration, to anyone you don’t wish dead. ‘A cousin lost a neighbor, she narrated. NEPA or PHCN or whatever they rechristened themselves to “happened” as usual and this young promising guy rushed to the power generating set, navigating through the nooks and crannies of the living room with the flash light from his phone….Just as he used the light from his mobile phone in fueling the generator, something tragic happened.  And before he could decipher if he was featuring in a movie, all he discovered was an unannounced explosion from the power generating set. He wasn’t even receiving a call neither was the phone ringing in the first place. As if been clothed with fire wasn’t enough a tragedy, his misfortune doubled as he was electrocuted to the teeth, at his unsuccessful attempt to escape out of the gate that houses the generator.

Cutting the long story short, this young man was disrobed of his life. He died.

He actually didn’t lose his life due to complications from burns or excess loss of blood due to acute electrocution, like the doctors would say; he died as a result of ignorance, yes, sheer ignorance.

I was so bellicose to say to mum that OK I agree that when switched on phones come near petrol pumps and flammable solvents, chemicals or gases, they release enough energy to ignite a spark, but what about the shock? I asked. I disregarded the story and almost concluded that it must have been an attack from the deepest part of hell, just like you are about to.

But while digesting Saturday punch as it is my ritual. Buki Olabiran’s column of 20th November 2010 titled “Obeying vital instruction” on social etiquette, gave credence to mum’s story. Buki’s visit to the hospital revealed the cases of two patients who suffered severe burns as a result of using the flash light from the phone while fueling the generator. One of the patient explained that all he knew was that his phone rang, then he realized a ghastly explosion. The other, narrated amidst so much pain and agony that the phone was in his pocket while he fueled the gen. In his own case, his mobile phone rang repeatedly but he couldn’t honour the call since his hands were busy. After the phone rang repeatedly, he also experienced an explosion.

Some are of the habit of checking the fuel level of the generator while the machine is on or even refueling the gen while it’s on or while still red hot. It’s suicidal. In fact, it’s like pulling the trigger of a pistol placed on your head all by yourself.

I’m yet to recover from the shock that I should have lost my face or complete skin to such a hellhole. Men! I should have been dead, buried and long forgotten. I practically use my phone’s flash light at each attempt to on the gen at night. My guardian angel must have done a lot to ensure that my kids don’t have a secondary albino for a father. God Am grateful.

Hello folks, lets learn from the experience of others and preserve our skin, the money we don’t have and most importantly our lives, because it’s pretty cheaper to learn from the experience of others. Don’t tempt the thief like my friend will always say. At this point in time, I say don’t tempt the devil, as it is widely believed that he is the author of all mishaps, even when it’s crystal clear that we are manifesting in our own pool of ignorance. Don’t tempt science either, please don’t.

Tell other friends or better still feel free to copy this article on your wall and tag as many friends you love. Remember, your happiness is incomplete when your loved ones aren’t happy!

May I not lose you or your face to fire.

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In the beginning...Let there be Light

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