“Daddy Daddy…” filled the air as my kids ran into my waiting hands. As I kissed them tears rolled down my eyes. Everybody in the room felt the joy and love I shared with my kids except one. She could feel the pains in me, the struggle am going through by just having her in the same room with me.
Today was supposed to be our anniversary instead am here trying to look for an excuse to travel back to Maiduguri where I know I’ll be safe from hurt.
My mother came in last and as I try to squat to greet her like I have learned from my association with the Northerners, she grabbed me half way down and hugged me. “My son, how are you? You are looking thin o! abi are they not feeding you people over there?” she started with her barrage of questions.
“mama am fine like I told you yesterday and I eat very well”
“so why are you then look like papa Julius?” she said.
That made all of us laughed including Shade. Papa Julius is my parents next door neighbor. The man can eat food made for twenty people at a go but he is still as thin as a broom. So anytime we want to say someone is thin or lean we make reference to Papa Julius. But the truth is that am not even slim or thin. I just don’t have fats like my mother would want.

Shade greeted her and took the kids to their rooms to change from their church wears. Ijeoma has return back to the kitchen. I and my mother sat down to catch up and when I say catch up, I really mean to answer her questions.

“How is Maiduguri? Hope this madness has not reach your side? Infact it will never reach your side in Jesus name. Never plans by the devil to harm you shall fail. Never body that says my child will not see peace they too will not know peace. “, she ended her questions with prayers.
“Amen mama”, I said with smile on my face.
“your friend James was here two days ago and brought food stuffs for us, please thank him went you see him”, mama said.
“Aww that’s nice of him, I will talk to him later”, I lied to my mum. Hiding my pains and feeling.

Up until now I still can’t explain what will push the two people that I love so much do what they did. What would make Shade go that far, what would make James go that far. I want to know and yet I don’t.

I know she is a lady and a beautify one at that, she has told me countless times how her colleagues and other men made passes at her and she has refuse them, so why now? I really can’t believe what I saw, it was like those stories you hear about but thought it couldn’t happen to someone you know or even you for that matter.

‘mama how is papa? I asked my mum
“he is fine o. he doesn’t want to come back maybe he has seen a younger lady over there” she replied and we all laughed including Ijeoma who was returning from the kitchen with plates on her hands to set up the dinning. The kids returned back to the parlor dressed in shorts and t-shirt. Lola was jumping and down on me, while Kemi collected my phones just the way her mother use to do. My mother and Shade up set the table while Ijeoma brought the food from the kitchen.  It was fried rice and chicken, my favorite. I sat on my dad seat which is the head of the table while my mum sat opposite me. I was asked to lead the prayers before we eat.
“God we thank you for this food. For rest and home and all things good. For wind and rain and sun above. But most of all for those we love. Bless this food to our use, and us to ty service. Fill our hearts will grateful praise. Amen.” I said raising my head to a stream of eyes looking at me with laughter in their eyes. Ijeoma couldn’t hold hers as she let it out. Even Shade was smiling too.
We ate our food even with the little tension in the room between me and my wife. Apart from my sister who noticed it earlier no one else did. Which was a blessing and a relived for me, because I wasn’t in the mood to explain. Shade and I needs to talk but I don’t know how the conversation will be like. I still love my wife, that’s why this has been difficult for me.

I remember in the opportunity I had to cheat on my wife. It was a promotional night for one of the commanders. He was promoted to Lt. colonel. Members of the media were invited, some of us do have friends within the military ranks. The night was filled with drinks, music and women. There is this lady that has been giving me the clearest of green light. She should be in her mid-twenties and very pretty. Infact was the target of most of the men civilian and military alike. She noticed that I lived only and don’t mix with the “crowd” as we usually call those of our colleagues that goes out to drink and sleep with the locals.  She started by bringing me food, and helping me to do some domestic chores. Sometimes we go to market together other times we just take a stroll to a nearby football field to watch some match. People have even started calling us couples but then we know there was nothing between two of us except mutual respect and pure friendship. That faithful night we were together and since she and I don’t drink alcohol we just collected bottle of soft drinks and start mingling with friends.  It was getting late and I decided to greet the celebrant before we took our leave. I just left her for like thirty minutes and by the time I return I noticed something was wrong. She was acting funny; her bottle water has been replaced by a disposable cup which the content I suspect will be alcohol because that was what the other guys were taking. I noticed at the far corner of the officer’s mess some of my not too good colleagues who have been making rude comments about my relationship with Hadiza were laughing. I guess they have a hand in what was wrong with Hadiza. Immediately I put my arms around her and sauntered her out of there. Funny enough I don’t know her home so I took her back to my place. She was really drunk and rambling on by the time we got there. Immediately we gone inside, I led her straight to the bathroom, put her head under the shower and put it on. Her cloths were drenched but the time I took her back to the room. I removed her cloth and wrapped her in my blanket. I didn’t fail to notice she was putting on a pink bra which hugged her perfectly shaped breast. She was blessed just like her ancestors before her with flat tommy, Her fair skin glows as water trickles down from her very long curly black hair.

In her state of drunkenness, she was mumbling some words like ‘I love you, why can’t you love me back’,   



The Tahajjud is a special Islamic prayer which is recommended (but not required) for all Muslims. The Tahajjud is prayed after Isha (the obligatory nightly prayer) and before Fajr (the obligatory morning prayer). If possible, it is most desirable to perform the Tahajjud between midnight and Fajr, preferably in the last third of the night. Though the Tahajjud isn’t required, many devout Muslims try to make it part of their daily routine as an act of worship and to earn redemption and forgiveness from Allah.[1] To learn how to pray the Tahajjud in the way laid out by the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), see Step 1 below.

Preparing For Prayer

1. Arrange to wake up after midnight. After praying the Isha prayer and before going to sleep, make arrangements to wake up during the night before the Fajr prayer (for instance, you may want to set an alarm clock or have a family member agree to wake you). Though the Tahajjud can be prayed at any part of the night, if possible, it is best to pray it after midnight, especially during the last third of the night. The time two-thirds of the way between Maghrib and Fajr is a good time for Tahajjud. This is because Allah descends to the lowest heaven during the last third of the night, asking, “Who is asking me, so I can give to him? Who is calling upon me, so I can answer him? Who is seeking my forgiveness, so I can forgive him?'” [2]
If you make an honest effort to wake up and perform the Tahajjud but accidentally sleep through the night, don’t feel guilty. According to the Hadiths, Allah records your genuine intention to perform the Tahajjud and grants you sleep as an act of mercy.[3]
Wake up and perform Wudu. Wake up during the night at the time you’ve chosen. Once you wake, perform Wudu, the ritual ablution Muslims use to cleanse themselves before they pray or handle the Holy Quran. Traditionally, performing Wudu means using clean water to wash oneself in the following four ways:
Washing the face
Washing the arms and hands up to and including the elbows
Wiping the head (Masah)
Washing the feet up to the ankles
Note that many Muslims (including the Prophet Muhammad [pbuh]) also choose to wash their mouth and teeth with a miswak before the Tahajjud.[4]
Next, go somewhere clean, quiet, and dignified to conduct your prayer. This is done because Allah’s names are pure, so, whenever possible, Muslims are encouraged to speak of Him in clean, holy places as a form of reverence. Wearing your normal prayer clothes, sit down on a prayer mat and face the Holy Kabah in Mecca as you would for your obligatory prayers.
To be clear, you don’t need to be anywhere special, like a mosque or a lavishly-decorated room in your house, to pray the Tahajjud. All that’s needed is a spot that’s clean which can even be in your room.
Remove all worldly worries from your heart. The time for prayer is to calmly focus and reflect on the glory of your Lord. It’s not for worrying about fleeting worldly problems that are ultimately meaningless in comparison to His infinite wisdom and mercy. Calm yourself and forget your worldly problems, hopes, and fears. Ignore any negative, distracting thoughts or feelings. Close your eyes and focus your attention on the region of your heart as you begin to achieve a heightened state of spiritual awareness.

Saying the Tahajjud
Make your intention to pray known. As you start your prayer, make a definitive mental declaration to yourself that you are about to perform the Tahajjud. Decide that you are going to complete the Tahajjud in the specific way you have chosen, including how many rakats and which surahs you will recite. Also decide why you are saying the Tahajjud — for instance, to glorify Allah, thank Allah or ask for His forgiveness. You don’t have to make this declaration out loud — Allah knows your thoughts, so your intentions will be clear to him as long as they are clear to you.
The Tahajjud is typically performed by repeating multiple rakats (cycles) of Salah, the ritual that Muslims use for their required daily prayer. For the Tahajjud, the rakats are usually performed in pairs, so you’ll also want to decide exactly how many rakats you intend to perform at this time. See below for more information.
Perform two rakats. To begin your Tahajjud, start by performing two rakats (cycles) of Salah. Salah begins by standing and reciting verses from the Holy Quran. Then, the person praying continues by bowing low with his hands on his knees, then prostrating on the ground with his forehead, nose, and palms on the floor and his elbows raised, sitting on his knees with his feet folded under him, and finally standing and reciting “Allahu Akbar.” This description of Salah is a generalization — if you’re not sure how to perform Salah properly, learn this fundamental Muslim skill before attempting the Tahajjud.
Emulate the practices of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) who used to recite the following surahs after each rakat in Tahajjud:[5]
After reciting the Al-Fatihah the first rakat, recite the surah “Al-Kafirun”.
After reciting the Al-Fatihah for the second rakat, recite the surah “Al-Ikhlas”.
Repeat rakats as you wish. Generally, two rakats is seen as the minimum necessary for a proper Tahajjud. However, it’s possible to repeat as many more as you wish. For instance, according to the Hadiths, the Prophet Muhammad frequently prayed up to thirteen rakats.[6] For most Muslims, Tahajjud rakats are performed in pairs and eight rakats is seen as plenty. In other words, most Muslims will say two, four, six, or eight rakats, though more is not necessarily discouraged.
If you are able to, then reciting long surahs such as Al-Baqarah, An-Nisā’ or Al-‘Imran are highly commended, even if you can manage them only from time to time.
Following in the example of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), if you notice dawn approaching while you say your Tahajjud, you may end by performing one rakat as Witr (an optional pre-dawn prayer said before the required Fajr).[7]
Add your own prayers after the rakats. After you’ve completed the number of rakats you set out to pray, you may add whichever of your own prayers that you wish as long as they’re sincere, respectful, and done in complete devotion to Allah. These may be offered in extended prostration. You may want to offer additional thanks and praise to Allah, pray for strength and guidance, or make a special request for help. For instance, after completing your rakats, you may ask for good fortune for a friend or another individual who’s suffering through difficult times. This is an ideal time to pray for forgiveness for your sins. Acknowledge what you have done wrong, promise not to repeat it and sincerely ask Allah for forgiveness and leniency in any punishment that He may decide to prepare for you. Any prayer you offer will be heard, and, if Allah wills, your prayer will be answered in kind.

5. If you become too tired to complete the Tahajjud, go back to bed. Because the Tahajjud interrupts your normal sleep, it’s not unlikely that you may be somewhat tired when you attempt the prayer. If, however, you’re so tired that you find yourself forgetting what you’re saying as you recite your prayers or you doze off in the middle of your Tahajjud, don’t attempt to complete the prayer. In this case, according to the Hadiths, Allah notes your sincere willingness to complete the Tahajjud. You may go back to sleep without any need to be embarrassed or ashamed, but try to better prepare yourself next time.





He has really interesting perspectives on family; and he is live online right now, to take your live questions & reactions.

But first, let’s read from him:


1. Your most memorable family moment?

Witnessing the turbaning of HRM Alhaji Ado Ibrahim as Ohinoyi of Ebirraland

2. Your personal family hero?

Our grand father HRM Atta Ibrahim

3. Would you go into business with family members? Give reasons

Alhamdulillah,I have done so many  business with family members in the past and certainly do not regret. Currently,I have a few things doing with some of us that I do not want to mention. With honest members of the family,your investment is safe.

4. Your assessment of Atta family today?

Out great family is in a state of comatose for the inability or rather selfishness of some of our uncles and aunties that wrongly believed that helping their brothers’ or sisters’ children will make them rival theirs. Alhamdulillah,they are now full of regrets.

5. Given the chance, one thing you would change in the family?

Selfishness of some of our uncles and aunties.This has really taken us back in the scheme of things in ebirraland talk less of Nigeria.

6. Would you marry from family? Give reasons.

Honestly,I never knew I could marry any of my cousins until some few years ago. If I had known,I would have married one so dear to me😰 REASONS, believe keeping it within is far better. And again we, either male or female are so unfortunate in marriage.


Q. Kashim Usman: Interesting answers, big bros. My question is: Would you say we the grandchildren have shown any departure from the mistakes of the past?

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: Alhamdulillah,we are gradually embracing inclusiveness now though some are towing that sick line. Insha Allahu,we shall overcome and return back to the vision of our grand father.

Q. Zubairu jide Atta: Thank u for accepting to be a guest. : question: a lot of descendants have never been home to ebiraland even on a visit to connect with roots and family or for many other reasons. Primarily because they don’t know where to go or stay. How can this matter be accommodated in our family revival?

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: @ Zubair,if we may recall our amenable ‘father’ Hajiya Rabi mentioned it on this platform that we should all cultivate the habit of going home especially during ganny’s remembrance anniversary that comes up March every year. As per accommodation,we have willing family members that can host the home coming ones. And note that we have numerous hotels and guest houses in Okene.

You can please liaise with the Admins of this platform led by Adai Rufai for our family yearly activities.

Q. ABDULMALIK BABA MUH’D: Tnx for doing dis today..  Question: how do u think we can bring to an end this selfishness within the family to an end.

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: Constant meeting and interaction like we have started on this platform.

Q. ABDULMALIK BABA MUH’D: Sir Question: what aspect of grandpa interests you the most, as your hero?

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: With our granny’s limited western education he then saw the future importance of western education in the scheme of things in Nigeria and  he was able to send his children to best secondary schools & universities all over the world.

Q. Sherifat Shehu Atta: Thanks for accepting to be our guest. My question is this: would you marry a family who dated another member of the family before but did not end in marriage. Thanks sir

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: you are welcome my dearest, I am a Muslim and will strictly follow Islamic Injunction. My answer is a BIG YES

Q. AISHA SABIU ABDULMALIK: Question: talking about doing business with family, how will one address issues when a party defaults without harming family relations?

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: I draw up my business parameters from the onset and if I see it becoming delinquent,I apply the brakes before it affects our family relationship.

Q. Rahmatu Abdulmalik: Sir would you always stand by your family come rain come thunder?

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: Insha Allah I will always be their for my great family come what may. And I pray that when I answer the ultimate call,those of you alive will write that ANOTHER IBRAHIM ATTA lived and left his footprints in the family tradition.

Q. Yasir Abdulmalik: Can you tell us just 3 attributes you so much love about our Great grand father

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: (1) Honest (2) Patient (3) Futuristic

Q. Haj. Habiba Abdulwahab: How can we. bring up some of our cousins that are not interested in the meetings of the Forum.

A. Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta: We all reaching out to so many of them and the ADMINS have appointed regional representatives to reach out to the majority out there.

There you have it, brothers and sisters!
You’ll agree it’s been a one hour of very frank chat with our maiden guest, bros Ibrahim Baba Alabura Atta. We believe it can only better and more interesting from here. Meanwhile, be prepared to be our guest too!

Join us same day, same time, next week.

Cheers and have a lovely week! to everyone who contributed to today’s success. Let’s do it again next week.