When Senator Effiong Bob buried mum in Uyo
It was a celebration of a life well spent for Madam Mary Dickson Bob, mother of the distinguished Sen. Effiong Bob and his siblings when they rolled out the drums to celebrate Mama, who many described as hardworking, compassionate, kind, loving, upright, caring and above all, a committed and devoted Christian. For a whole week, the entire Akwa Ibom State and particularly her community, Ikot Ekwere in Nsit Ubuim Local Council of Akwa Ibom, stood still for this virtuous woman.
The burial rites began on Sunday, November 6, 2016 when different age groups paid condolence visits as the tradition demands. On Friday November 11, the atmosphere in the entire community was charged as people lined up the street to pay their last respect. It was a serene community but from the look of things, Mama Mary Bob was a beloved who was, indeed, loved in her lifetime and celebrated even in death.
The sonorous voices of different choristers led by the church of the deceased, The African Church, rented the air that warm evening while the Brass Band also played an important role that reminds all that it was not time to mourn but to celebrate. The Service of Songs, which held on Friday was led by her son, Senator Effiong Bob. The incumbent governor of the State, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, Speaker, Mr. Offiong Luke, former Governor Godswill Akpabio, Senator Tunde Ogbeha, Unilag Class Law 80-83, former EFCC Chairman, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, Senator Tunde Ogbeha and other dignitaries too numerous to mention registered their presence to honour their friend’s mother, who was described as one in a million.
In a short sermon titled, “Seek the Lord” which was delivered by Ven. Chris Ndom, he enjoined all to examine their relationship with God.
According to him, people should not wait till the end to seek God as the right time is now because God is always there to provide for His own. The cleric extolled the virtues of the late Madam Bob who was “totally committed to her God till the end.”
In his short speech, Gov. Udom Emmanuel also praised Madam Bob for the humanitarian works she did during her lifetime, which was worthy of emulation.
The following day, dignitaries from all walks of life converged on an open field in her community for the funeral/thanksgiving service conducted by the African Church, St. Michael’s Parish Ikot Ekwere in Nsit Ubuim Local Council, Uyo Central Diocese.
Delivering her speech on behalf of the governor, the wife of Akwa Ibom State governor, Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel condoled the entire Bob’s family as they share in their pains. She said: “We share in your pain particularly at this time that her words of wisdom are needed. We congratulate her for seeing her children reaching the pinnacle of their careers. I believe she is resting in the bosom of the Lord watching her investment of integrity, moral values, uprightness that she had inculcated in her offspring. Her life is worthy of emulation. She was a kind and loving woman whose life is a testimony of how we should fear God, impact lives and be of good to humanity.”
Mrs. Udom Emmanuel implored all to be like Mama as a role model in the community. And generally as people, we should be kind to one another.
Talking glowingly about his mother, Sen. Bob on behalf of his siblings extolled the virtues of a mother who made them who they are today. According to him, this was a mother of 13 children who died at the age of 90 years, she is worthy if celebration. Speaking further, he said: “She was a good woman and God blessed her and in turn blessed us. She was not educated but exceptionally brilliant and intelligent.”
“She was also a devoted Christian, which she combined with community development. In her old age, she went to adult education, wore uniform so she would be able to read and write and sing in her local dialect. Above all, to be able to record her transaction.
“The one that really shaped us was her strength in character, integrity, honesty and trust in God. There was a time a woman was caught stealing cassava in the farm. Instead of embarrassing her, she invited the woman to the house and counseled her not to steal again. She empowered her and till today, the woman and her children have become part of our family. By the time she died, about a 100 people named their children including a male child just to show appreciation for what she was. We the children adore her and we took care and maintained her till the end,” he recalled.
Rounding off his speech, Sen. Effiong Bob enjoined people in his community to always trust in the Lord, believe themselves and above all, to embrace education which is the only liberator from the shackles of poverty. He also seized the opportunity to thank family and friends including the Speaker, Akwa Ibom State House of Representatives, Mr. Offiok Luke, Deputy Governor, Mr. Moses Ekpo, First Lady, Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel, the Unilag Law Class 80-83, University of Benin governing council led by its Vice-chancellor, Prof. Faraday Orumwense, Unilag Alumni, Akwa Ibom State Chapter.
For Madam Mary Dickson Bob, testimonies from community leaders and children, without doubt showed that she died a satisfied, fulfilled and an accomplished mother.
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