Tributes To A Bridge Builder: Late Cdre Ibrahim Nurudeen (rtd) By Asiwaju Abiodun Abdul’azeez

Tributes To A Bridge Builder: Late Cdre Ibrahim Nurudeen (rtd) By Asiwaju Abiodun Abdul’azeez

Fellow readers, please do read as you permit me to write, it's no longer a news that Cdre Ibrahim Nurudeen (rtd) is no more, a man who focused on the remarkable structures of the medical branch in the navy during his years in the service, and even after his retirement. Let me put it more frontally, Late Cdre Nurudeen weaved his best in the medical branch of the navy, and I may say that in this 21st century, his name was the most traveled brand due to his utilization of stupendous resources, extensive mindset towards building formidable medical structures, extensive welfare to the officers and men who worked or learned under his watch.

I know some would think it's too much to paint him in golden chambers, but how do one express his love for the man who solely bought one a voiceable future. If you ask me, I'll tell you, unequivocally and repeatedly that he was a qualified and licensed bridge builder, who assembled many stones regardless of religion and tribe to build a tarred career for the future of those that gathered the stones. If you ask me, if he was a saint, I'll reply you no, no human had ever been. Not even the greatest of all scholars among mankind. Humans are governed by their shadows which are virtually moulded by mere mirage—hence, perfection in human community can not be achieved, and this has been one of the recurring theses I usually propagate in my musings and reflections. Nonetheless, he was a father who was careful not to only nurture his tongue but his entire country to unify flesh in all dialects. 

He was a disciplinarian who frowned at all unnecessary manipulations; perhaps, to expose one to the ladder of growth, his simplicity and appearance were mitigated by several strong and positive qualities. He was generous to a fault, he lifted many souls, officers and ratings of the navy; from penury and affluence,  illiteracy to literacy, he was a classic example of a good samaritan, a typical example of sky builder, and till kingdom arrives, his name shall always find a space in the heart of lovelies. He was an exception, too many zeals to travel miles to reframe the welfare of his subordinates, and several comments have showered his departure for his fervour for truthfulness and transparency. In one of the circulating videos, we saw him addressing his subordinates, he said and I quote "A leader is supposed to make sure that he takes care of the welfare of his subordinates, that is one of the traits of a good leader which am imploring all of you to do"—in a combatant space like military, this statement means a lot, depicting the symptoms of humanity spiced by God's love and wisdom, as some leaders care not about the problems of their surbodinates, and that's why he was an exception in every regard.

I followed his mentorship for close to a decade, his story was a functioning tale; punctuated with hardwork, charisma and transparency without sentiments; usually in the eyes of the God. When you had thought he was too strict and mean, he cuddled you with words of hopes concocted with reality— such an avenue to rise again. Truly, I lost a father, we lost a father, a man in whom I'm convinced to have built more men if death had not clumped his lumen. Several people have written tributes to paint him in the public domain, some described him as a person whose passion and influence made some carefree heads to redouble their sprouting strength, truly he was a good man.

In my own relationship with him, I cannot really explain, for his words had always been a path which never stumble me. During his 60th birthday and retirement in february, I was far away that I couldn't celebrate him due to unavailability of network, and after the period spent, I returned to where I had access to network, then I got a message from my friend; Ahmed Nurudeen to remind me of his birthday, I quickly in the spirit of  joy called him, he challenged me for not informing him before traveling, and I apologised. Instantly, I wrote an article and sent it to two bloggers, which one of them sent me the link that graced the senior officer, I forwarded it to him, and he replied me "Abdulazeez, thank you, I'm grateful, also with prayers, and after his death, news came to me that he had sent this article to some senior officers to read my talent in ink without notifying me, this was a senior officer who didn't belittle my lights in hopes, who didn't neglect my little efforts in words, who didn't see me as a favour- seeking boy, and I ask; what could I have given to an elder if not fertile words with lovely prints, and truly we lost a rare gem, we lost a citadel of optimism, a tree surrounded with lights of literature, and a definition of togetherness is forever lost.

His military career was full of glinting remarks, he got to the minaret of his career as an acting director of medical services, he made men and positioned everyone as the service required, he awarded punishment when necessary to incur a reminder against the furtherance—true portrait of a good leader. Even if I didn't witness his achievements in the early days of his career in the military, his achievements as a Commandant of the Nigeria Navy College Of Health Sciences have projected him to be the glint of all in building manpower, drastic reduction in indiscipline amongst personnel, and building of a better system for the navy and the country at large. His indomitable and indefatigable spirit to establish functioning system can never be undermined, then, standing tall as a glinting diamond amongst the virgin stones, truly we lost a legend,  we lost a summary of humanity, and the scope of optimism. 

Sir, you'd be missed for your sincerity, transparency and efficiency to mould human beings with words and sweat, but posterity will never forget your imprints and structures built and documented for the beauty of the service and the nation at large. Farewell Sir, and have a safe landing. 

Copyright Asiwaju Abiodun Abdul’azeez

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