Wednesday 10th February could as well pass as ‘World Drag Efio-Ita Nyok Day’ as some netizens on Cross River cyberspace were passionate and unanimous in mischievously querying the status of my being a journalist —one who basically gathers and disseminates information for mass consumption.
Actually, this rather comical craze all started with my dropping a screen-grab of a statement made by a senior friend, namely, Ceejay Ojong, who candidly acknowledged my contribution to (the growth of) journalism in Cross River. Then came the mischievous query from my friend, namely, Richie Romanus –’Are you a journalist?’ Albeit, this ‘inquiry’ set the tone for a stretch of the argument. Ini Imah of #Kokopedia would be the first to make an elaborate discourse on the query to which have been tens of replies notable among which is that of the veteran, Agba Jalingo, of #CrossRiverWatch whose opinion was quite discursive. Jalingo would admit in the course of his reply beneath Imah’s that he’d previously also asked this now important question: Is Efio-Ita Nyok a Journalist? Imah’s thread would further inspire Frankie Ifop of #ParadiseNews to enter some few comments.
My reaction to the foremost inquiry by Romanus was evasive as to answering whether I am a journalist. This characteristic evasiveness was mistaken by Ubong Henry my brother and friend to being an inability to defend myself —the helpless condition I allegely put some of my interlocutors when we’re in a debate. Ubong would gloat over this perceived inability for awhile. For instance, the said Ubong could not defend his believe in the misleading Christian theology of Trinity and I took him up in public; he invoked Solomon Nkam Ubi and some other clerics who incidentally denied him and took sides with #Truth.
Actually, my reason for being this seemingly evasive wasn’t because I was handicapped as erroneously suspected but was to sit back and watch people’s reactions, a disposition which would give me the opportunity to conduct, as it were, an objective assessment through the eyes of my readers/observers as well as give me insight into my fan’s and foe’s appreciation of my journalistic endeavour with Negroid Haven, etc thus far.
In the minds of majority of the assessors of my #journalism beginning from 3rd December 2014 through 10th February 2021 (over 6 years) I have not done poorly. If this is true, then my conduct has been fair. That’s my take. But, that’s not more interesting as to have gleaned that I am an inspiration to upcoming sets of young and practicing (online) journalists. Again, another assessor observed that I have thrived in a politically conservative environment like Cross River, which implies, I have successfully stood against the institutional error of a powerful establishment without compromise. The knowledge of haven demonstrated leadership (to some), and embody integrity (for the greater good) —these are no mean feats, right?— made my day two days ago. Thanks chaps!
I know the question wasn’t —Is Efio-Ita Nyok a journalist? And implicitly, What is Journalism? And/or who’s a journalist? But, how has Nyok conducted himself thus far, and to what depth? Put differently, the sense of excellence, and service was under public scrutiny. And I think this is what life should be all about: individual excellence and impact. Our lives begin to count when we live for others. It was Michael Jackson, arguably the greatest pop star of all times, in his ‘Heal the World’ who sang: ‘stop existing… start living’.
When your live becomes a subject of public scrutiny, you may’ve started ‘living’… You may ‘ve passed from existence –mere survival through/for food, shelter, clothing and sex, to life –ensuring the survival, success and impact of others.
However, the corollary will be: is your individual success/excellence as well as societal impact/influence, in the positive or negative direction? Think about these things.
Blogger-in-Chief of #NegroidHaven
Diary of an African Blogger
12th February 2021.