A TRIBUTE TO SIR THOMAS TORKUMA TOR-DONGA (KSM)

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Citizen John Akevi

There has been a solemnity about the Town of Tor- Donga in Katsina – Ala local government area of Benue since the story broke of the tragic death of Hon. Prince (Sir) Thomas Torkuma  Tor – Donga (KSM) born 59 years ago.

If a soothsayer had predicted to me that Hon. Torkuma was going to die in the next 40 years, I would have suggested that the soothsayer’s head be examined by a neurologist because Hon. Prince (Sir) Thomas Torkuma Tor-Donga (KSM) was always bubbling with life.

As I am scripting this piece, my Boss and a prolific writer Engr. Benedict Tertsea Shinku (MNSE, AMEI, MNiMechE) Founder and President John Shinku Nule Trust Foundation has already penned a very moving tribute to the depth of Prince Torkuma’s humanity, emphasising his genuine commitment to fairness, a deep sense of justice and an ability to carry people along. He was also said to have a deep empathy for the less privileged people, and had been a central figure in the effort to touched so many lives by his selfless and countless acts of kindness, always giving and never expecting any favours in return.

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Hon. Prince (Sir) Thomas Torkuma Tor – Donga (KSM) I still can’t believe I am writing a tribute because of your passing. Words cannot describe this difficult moment, but if this is the last time I get to say goodbye then I know I will do so with the knowledge that I consider myself blessed to have lived this life as your brother. It’s such a shame to lose you at this time,unfortunately no death is timely. Like they say, God’s time is the best but we, your family and friends understandably feel it’s quite too soon. But then such is life and we have to accept that God had decided to bring you home.

Firstly, ‘Prince ’ as he was known by people so close to him, was a very intelligent and highly opinionated person. One specific thing I admired a lot about him was the amount of respect he commanded.

Hon. Prince (Sir) Thomas Torkuma Tor – Donga (KSM) was a man of repute and had a dignifying aura about him. On a personal level, he was always willing to help and offer advice where necessary. I remember the last ‘heart-on-heart’ conversation I had with him last year in Gboko, Benue State he told me his biggest concern was to ensure that peace have returned to Tiv land particularly in Tor Donga, Abaji and Gbishe  which recently been tagged as axis of evil in Benue state.

When I heard the sad news of the sudden death of Hon. Prince (Sir) Thomas Torkuma Tor – Donga (KSM) exit truthfully, my initial reaction was still one of disbelief and something inside me was still hoping, and praying that a miracle could transpire. As a family, we are at the acceptance stage and as we mourn this great man’s death,my heart goes all out especially to his wife lady Terwase and his lovely kids;  But what we, as a family and friends must remember is this, he is in a better place, and although we have lost an inspirational member of us, God works in mysterious ways. We should also use this moment to remember our brothers and sisters who have been called to glory , and keep them in our prayers.

Togetherness is absolutely needed, and through that we should revere the priceless moments we all enjoyed with Hon. Prince (Sir) Thomas Torkuma Tor-Donga (KSM). At the end of the day, we all have a final destination and Hon. Thomas happened to get to his destination rather too soon. In this light, the old cliché resurfaces; what exactly is life? This is because when you look at it from every point of view whatsoever,we are all just passers-by.

Uncle, you were and will always be an inspiration to myself, the entire family and anyone who worked with you. You have left a void in the family that will never be filled.

While we mourn today, we also take comfort in the fact that your mission on earth would have been fulfilled. We thank the Lord for your life and bade you farewell until we meet again.

To his children, relations, friends and numerous admirers, I know that it is often difficult to write a tribute of this nature that touches the right vein of sympathy, but they should be consoled that Hon. Prince (Sir) Thomas Torkuma Tor – Donga (KSM) lived a fulfilled life and he was a good man. I know that he is on the right hand of God and that God has received and blessed his gentle soul

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