Good Night Debbie Ohamara

By Emman Ozoemena

Good night, Debbie Ohamara

A week before the New Year – 2024 (the Gregorian Calendar), Debs Ohamara called to request that I should be her guest on Nigeria Info 95.1 Abuja for her programme on January 1, 2024. She added that the issue of discussion will focus on the ongoing security situation in Nigeria, including the Christmas Day attack on communities on the Plateau as the lynch pin for the proposed conversation. I granted her request with a promise that I will be at the studio on January 1 as her first guest for year 2024.

Dateline. January 1, 2024, by exactly, 6:14 am, Deby sent a gentle reminder via WhatsApp on the upcoming programme and later follow up with a phone call. I reassured her that I will be in the studio with her for the programme. The prgramme held as planned and we had robust conversation and participation from Nigeria Info 95.1 Abuja ever engaging audience.

After the programme I set out to exit the studio, when she called me attention with this expression “Nwanneukwu (a name used for an elderly sibling among Isuikwuato people of Abia state, where both Debs and I hail from.), Please wait for me. She reach her hands beside her chair, brought a while bag containing a bottle of wine and handed it to me as a New Year present. I stood in awe, thanking for this gesture and wished her on all the best for 2024.

I had known Debs Ohamara over the years at Nigeria Info 95.1 Abuja where I had been a regular Guest as Kimberly Nwachukwu was always introduce me when ever I am on her programme, #TheRoundtable.

I recalled one day in 2019 or so, after reading the news, in between the #Roundtable, while advertisement were on, I asked Debs Ohamara, which part of Igboland are you from? She mentioned Isuikwuato, I was taken aback. I smiled and told her that I am also from Isuikwuato. Right from then, it became a sibling relationship. Each time she sees me, it was natural for her to greet me in Isuikwuato dialect of the Igbo language. I took her like an elder brother would treat a younger sibling.

There are key lessons I learned in my association with Debs Ohamara, which I think Nigerians needs to imbibe. cosmopolitan, having lived in the North, South-South, and South-East. She spoke multiple Nigerian languages which is a huge asset any time.

Secondly, she was passionate about making impact through her work on the radio. I have featured as a guest on her programmes several, and on every occasion I leave with the impression of meeting a change agent behind the mic.

Thirdly, she was a multitalented young woman with a budding artistic expression via her music which is her second career. She recorded some music which you can find online. Some years ago, she send the link to me.

My interaction with her was impactful and profound in so many ways. I recall while on way out Nigeria Info 95.1 Abuja studio on January 1, at the staircase, a thought flashed through my mind. “Oh you would have taken a picture with your younger sister, Debs Ohamara.” By this time I was already at the ground floor. I simply told myself, you can always come around Nigeria Info 95.1 Abuja, so request for photo with your sister when you are in the studio next time. I left that day without taking photo with my sister, Debs Ohamara I now know that the photo with her won’t happen again on this side of eternity again.

My condolences to her family, Nigeria Info 95.1 Abuja family, her fans on the radio and all of us that are mourning the demise of our dear daughter, sister and friend.

Ada Isuikwuato, Debs Ohamara good night. Nwanyioma je nkeoma. Ka Elohim onye kere uwa gozie mpuru obi gi. (Wonderful Lady, travel well. May Elohim, the Creator bless your soul)

May her memory be for a blessing, Amen!

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