The founder of Ame wo ba Eggon, Comrade Esla Samson Madaki and his twin brother Esson Samson Madaki were plus one Thursday 31st December 2020. In this encounter, He speaks on the unity of Eggons among other issues. Excerpt.
My decision to come up with Ame wo ba Eggon (AWBE) was a quest to move with time, take advantage of technology and create a platform where all Eggon sons and daughters will be united leveraging the power of social media.
So on the 26th of February 2011, I created the group Ame wo ba Eggon on Facebook, from the beginning, I made it clear that what we stand for is the unity of the Eggon people irrespective of religious conviction, political or clannish alignments
In all honestly, I hardly can remember any challenges we faced at the beginning, this is due to the acceptability and goodwill the association enjoyed from inception. In a twinkle of an eye, people across all age groups and social strata accepted what we stand for and owned the vision. Let me quickly add that, notable people across all strata of society and ages, professionals, and many others actually lend their input in ideas and resources to move the group forward and, that was done at an astronomical speed.
So, before we clock one year, we were able to nominate a leadership without any form of rancour, we held meetings and organised the maiden edition of Eggon Carnival which today arguably is the largest of its kind in North Central of Nigeria.
However, the only challenge I can remember at the beginning till today has to do with funding. This is because almost all of what we do comes from donations and contributions from members and good spirited individuals in society. As a result, we are constrained to do all that we set out to achieve.
As you may be aware, we have been involved in various social and economic programs. We have donated relief materials to communities affected by one form of crisis or the other in the past. We have also embarked on medical outreaches and have donated medical inputs to hospitals; our member’s winner’s lawyers have also rendered free legal services to some persons as well as donated learning materials to schools etc.
What we have been doing and will continue doing is to ensure the platform remains void of political, religious or clannish interference.
We will always offer every Eggon person a level playing ground. I can assure you that with AWBE, there is no interest that is placed above the unity of Eggon.
So while we hold our political, religious, and clannish beliefs, we ensure that these do not interfere with our general interest.
By the grace of God and with all sense of modesty, we have been able to do this for 10 years, and the reason is that we are a disciplined association that works and is guided by the set down rules. Nobody, not even I or any member of the BOT or executive can make a decision on behalf of the association that is outside our rules. We are guided by it and we adhere strictly to it, and as I mentioned early, we are more of a self-funded association as such we are not at the mercy of any politician or godfather. Again, I think the way we have rejected any Greek offer in the past has sent clear messages to people who want to use the association for selfish reasons. While I will admit that we have received donations from some politicians, we haven’t done so under duress or any pre-conditionalities.
Promoting Eggon culture
We have been able to use this platform to demonstrate our rich cultural heritage through our activities like the annual cultural festival which draws peoples from the diaspora, also we have had visitors from all parts of the country as well as outside the country come witness our rich heritage. The platform also exposed them to our history through some of these activities like the hike to the Eggon hills which is a reservoir of the Eggon culture and Eggon people now look forward to coming back home annually and makes them proud to be identified as Eggon. We have disabused a lot of people’s minds from false notions and beliefs earlier held. The quality of persons involved in the organisation of our activities has left a very positive impression on the people that hitherto didn’t want to be identified as Eggon. We have received professional advisories from Professors, economists, doctors, lawyers, Chartered Accountants, Media gurus, and other professionals across all facets of the life of Eggon extraction on how to go about our activities which reflects on the quality of what we do. This has also made the Eggon brand one to be identified with. As a matter of fact, people from other states and different tribes have called me on several occasions to inquire about the carnival and attend.
Today our people even in the diaspora proudly wear the Eggon traditional attire and you are easily identified by it. This was not the case a few years back. So we will ensure we continue exposing and educate our people to our rich cultural heritage.
We encourage everyone to be the best in whatever they want to do so that while the platform makes them enjoy a comparative advantage, they should have a competitive advantage so that they can grow beyond this platform.
We usually offer Eggons brands the right of first refusal on our platform, but that doesn’t mean that because they enjoy this advantage, they should take it for granted. We encourage them to offer good value for what they do
AWBE in future
I believe the future of this platform is as bright as the promises of God and so we can only get better. In 2020, we launched the AWBE Cooperative Society; this is the first major economic program we are venturing into. We have dreamt of starting an AWBE Micro Finance Bank someday and, we believe this is attainable in the nearer future. We have professionals in almost every facet of society, so we hope to tap from their wealth of knowledge and experience to execute these plans. We also plan to have a scholarship scheme for the indigent in society so that they can be carried along. In summary, the future of this platform is a hybrid version that will evolve and move with time. Our membership across all age grades will ensure there’s mentorship which makes space for fresh ideas