Field House blues (Abe and the locker)

gcimuseum, gci, Field House

I entered GCI IN 1976, with some fantastic guys who have decided to adopt a moniker of "last set" for themselves.....Courtesy of Ado (Akinkunmi Akinyele), I got to find out that we were the last set that went through the 3 day selection assessment programme and therefore have a legitimate basis for adopting that name.

Following the lead from Adebisi Ogunode, i had promised to share some of the memorable moments of my stay in Field House. Like I had indicated in a past post, my late Dad started out in Swanston House and ended up in Field House (as one of the pioneer members when it was created) .....and so since my two elder brothers were in Swanston House, I am guessing there was a probably concerted effort to place me in Field House.

I will always admit that of the boys my parents had, I being the youngest was probably the most streetwise and most adventurous... it was therefore very much convenient for me that I wasn't placed in Swanston House with my elder siblings...I certainly didn't want to have them too much in my business..... So I started on Day one in Field house, I was in this room, can't quite remember the room number, but can readily picture it and it had Pouco (Dawodu and elder brother to my classmate as room head). As new students, we were allocated lockers in our rooms... the lockers had no locks, so each student had to buy locks (toko taya) from just oitside the school to secure your stuff in the locker. Having two elder siblings, as part of my settling in routine, my brothers helped me to hammer in my toko taya into the locker allocated to me and that was it, I was good to go.

I believe that the fifth form students did not resume with us as this was instrumental to some of the defining drama that took place during my GCI sojourn.

I forget also to state that I got into the school at a time my mom was the incumbent Commissioner for Education at the time, although this had little or no impact on my stay in the school... it was never an issue, although I refer to it because of the way public officials tend to abuse their positions of authority these days

Anyway, I had a free reign with my locker (all secure with toko taya) for the weeks before the fifth formers resumed. When they resumed, the drama started..... Abe who was one of the resuming fifth formers laid claim to my locker; he insisted it was his and that I should exchange it with one other locker which he pointed out to me. I was shocked, I argued, I cried, but he stood his ground.... when I couldn't push it any further, I dutifully but with a lot of resentment removed my stuff from one locker to the other; he was even kind enough to buy me another set of toko taya , although I was on my own to figure out how to hammer the stuff in and secure my locker..... I don't believe I ever got that done. Anyway, I felt cheated and unfairly treated and I moaned and lamented over this cheating for days until my parents eventually came for the visiting day....on that day, I broke down in tears lamenting about how my human rights had been parents, were horrified and asked me to call the senior which I did.....Abe came to them and defended his actions as best as he could, but not quite convincing my parents about the propriety of his actions. There was a lot of back and forth argument and my dad even tried to invoke his old boy status by letting him know that this wasn't how Juniors were treating in their days... Abe stood his ground... My mom took over, after she confirmed that she knew his mom, but Abe still stood his ground, it was his locker and he wasn't releasing the end of the day; that was it... Abe did not balk....I was disappointed, although proud of my mom to this day that unlike what obtains today.... she did not invoke her Commissioner of Education one ever got the principal or the house master involved.... they let things go as they were, even if that meant leaving their son feeling shortchanged. ....

Imagine a student dragging it with the commissioner of education who could have had the inspector of education querying the principal and the principal breathing down the neck of the house master.....that sounds more of a likely scenario today such obscene power play those days.

Submitted By: 

AWE Oludayo Ekundayo
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