Tribute to a course mate: Ja’afar Halilu Musa Karaye – Daily Trust
Verily from Allah we came and unto Him is our return” Certain incidents would leave memories permanently inscribed on your memory for life. Incidents that remind you of the place, time, events, fac…
Verily from Allah we came and unto Him is our return”Certain incidents would leave memories permanently inscribed on your memory for life. Incidents that remind you of the place, time, events, faces and what you were doing. The day in question is one.
Having parked and alighted from my car and headed to the office a week before last, I met one of my colleagues – Shamsudeen Idris, whom I got to know through Ja’afar when he was about to join our organization.Coincidentally, both Ja’afar and Shamsu lived in the same area in Abuja. So, anytime I came across Shamsu in the office, after the usual exchange of pleasantries, I always asked about the ‘Chinese-trained Intelligent Officer’ or ‘National Security Adviser’ (NSA), the two titles I fondly use interchangeably to refer to Ja’afar Halilu Musa Karaye.
On that fateful day, Shamsu immediately told me “your Chinese-trained Intelligent Officer isn’t feeling fine” and I exclaimed jokingly, “hope it’s not COVID?” and then I sought to know his travel history, knowing the nature of his work.Shamsu told me that he just returned from an official assignment in Kano/Jigawa axis but his sample had been taken for laboratory test and the result was being awaited.
We both wished him quick recovery and I told Shamsu that I will call him when I settle down in the office.I later called his line same day but no one picked. A day or two later, I put a call across again and luckily for me the wife picked. I asked how Ja’afar was doing and she told me he was better. She promised to let him know that I called. Not satisfied with the wife’s response a day later, I called another person – Nasir Yabagi, who shares the same in-laws with Ja’afar, and he told me he was better and that he would let him know that I called anytime he was around him.
At 2:20pm on Tuesday June 16, 2020, I received a phone call from another friend Abubakar Abubakar, who took me round Niger State politics knowing fully well that was one of my major areas of interest. We had a long discussion, profiling potential candidates on both the PDP and APC platforms. Finally, he broke the bad news of what prompted the call. I shouted on top of my voice that he allowed me to be discussing ‘useless’ issues when we’ve lost a friend. Abubakar told me that he wanted to calm my nerves before breaking the ugly news.
My path crossed with Ja’afar during our undergraduate days at the famous Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria. He was reserved and calm, and having found him worthy in content and character, I gave him and others the latitude to call me any time of the day for further explanations on areas or courses they don’t understand. Honestly, if I were to be his lecturer, I would have described him as someone who was open for learning. Someone who was always making frantic efforts to improve his areas of weakness.
In our final year, myself and Ja’afar were assigned to late Dr. A.P. Odofin for our project supervision. Ja’afar said to me; “Prof kasan Odofin mutumin ka ne” meaning “Prof you know Odofin is your man” so Ja’afar requested that we should be going to see Dr. Odofin together with our respective chapters anytime we were done.
When we finally graduated, we collected our certificates same time. To the best of my knowledge, our set was the first in ABU Zaria to collect our original degree certificates immediately after graduation. Hitherto, the school will issue statement of result, and after some years, graduates would come back to pick their original certificate. So, we were told to check very well if there was no error. Having certified the certificates as typographic-error-free at the magnificent university Senate Building, Ja’afar turned and said to me, “Prof (the title they fondly called me), Allah shiwa kwalin nan albarka” meaning “may Allah bless these certificates” and I said Ameen.
True to it, the certificates were blessed because to the best of my knowledge, Ja’afar was the first person in our class to secure a permanent and pensionable appointment.The last time I spoke extensively with Ja’afar was in November 2019, when he lost his mother. I wasn’t even aware until when someone told me later. I called him to condole him and to know his whereabout. But he told me that he was still in Kaduna and that as soon as he was back in Abuja, he would let me know so that we could hook up. That we never did until his demise.
Born on November 21, 1979, Ja’afar Halilu Musa Karaye hails from Karaye in Kano State. He was born, bred and buttered in Kaduna, Kaduna State. He attended NTI Primary School, Kaduna and Federal Government College Kwali-FCT for his primary and junior secondary education respectively. He then proceeded to Essence International School Kaduna for his senior secondary education.
He bagged a B.Sc. in International Studies in 2006 and a masters degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy (MIAD) in 2013 both from the Department of Political Science and International Studies, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.His one year mandatory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) was with the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) Abuja and after his sterling contributions, he was absorbed into the service of the Agency. He was seconded by DIA to the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) and posted back to DIA just before his demise.
Ja’afar was once nominated by ONSA to represent DIA in the Presidential Committee on the North East Initiative (PCNI) headed by Gen. T.Y. Danjuma. He was later replaced by a more senior officer.He had extensive security and intelligence training within and outside Nigeria. He was in China for years where he underwent intelligence training; reason why we fondly call him “Chinese-trained Intelligent Officer”.
Ja’afar was level headed and good in human relations. He will stop at nothing to keep in touch with friends, especially at times of celebration. I remember when he once came from Abuja to pick me in Minna to attend a friend’s wedding in far away Kontagora. That bond will definitely be missed.
We take solace in the fact that he died as a result of an epidemic, and like soldiers who die on the battle field or policemen who die while protecting the people, Ja’afar died in active service of his fatherland, having returned from an official assignment from Kano/Jigawa axis as a diligent member of the Nigerian Intelligence Community.
Ja’afar left behind his siblings, a wife and three kids -Ja’afar, Halilu and Yushau. We extend our heartfelt condolences to his immediate family, his colleagues, friends, acquaintances, associates, the class of U01/02DE PS/IS and his loved ones.We fervently pray that Allah (SWT) forgive all his shortcomings and admit him into Aljanna Firdaus. Amin thumma Amin.
Goodnight Ja’afar Halilu Musa Karaye for “security reasons”, as we fondly tease him.Musa Ibrahim Tsadu writes from AbujaRelatedDownload Daily Trust News App Read more: Daily Trust »
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