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Friday, August 11, 2017

Opinion | What Is Johnson Bassey Doing On Top Sports On Top Radio? By Deji Olaluwe

Trust me; nothing that I say here is personal.

Deservedly so, it's of essence my honest and unreserved opinion of him based on my observation as an ardent listener of top sports on top radio, a daily sports show anchored by the ace journalist, Godwin Enakhena.

Until only a few weeks back, God bear me witness, I don't know Johnson Bassey from Adam.

I don't know his parents; his upbringing; his education and the likes.

So it's not like because I don't just like his face or something that's why I'm picking on him.

I’m really picking on him? We shall see.

Except that the name 'Bassey' strikes a familiar cord from way back in Nigeria sports journalism fraternity.

But I could be wrong. After all not every 'Paul is a Bassey'.

As it would turn out listening in on the show a few weeks back I got a hint that the young man is the son of the famous sports journalist and administrator, Paul Bassey.

As the show progresses, no disrespect, I realized that he is a stammerer somehow to my utter dismay.

Not his fault though. It's one of many genetic accidents that could happen to anybody.

And I'm not out here to disparage him base on that; far from it.

You know what; he could've been a prophet just like Moses in the bible.

I know from my book of bible stories that Moses was a stammerer too. And had on that account unsuccessfully tried to dodge the messianic commission placed before him by God knowing how important speech is in directing the affairs of men.

He was prevailed upon by God and would go on to become one of the most powerful vessels for his higher divine assignments.

But definitely not sports commentary.

There and then, the question that readily popped up on my mind was: 'what business has he got being on a medium that relies solely on speech for effect'?

Could he just be hanging out with friends as it is?

Could it be that he's learning the rope?

However I tried to think through the first poser I just couldn't gloss over the 'big Bassey' connection in all of this.

I'm of the view that the show's regular anchor, Godwin Enakhena, got him under his wings as a recompense for what his father has done for him in time past starting out as a young journalist.

Again I might be wrong because his father too is a publisher and well connected.



File photo: Godwin Enakhena,  the legendary anchor of Top Spots on Top Radio.

Getting him a job elsewhere wouldn't pose a problem I theorized.

Because for crying out loud, this guy struggle unending to string words, phrases, sentences and thoughts together day in day out on the show; no disrespect to his humanity.

Come to think of it, we all have our flaws.

I've mine too. But I'd be the last to expose mine in an industry where it is the least requirement.

"Like the blind  who went to the cinema, what a sheer joker he's, because he can only hear the noise from others and won't see anything.

And when the leprosied is home alone, there is the tendency for him to feel nobody is like unto him among his peers."

If you ask me, I think he only makes up the number and haven’t done enough to earn his place on the show and in the gang for obvious reasons.

Above all, he's not cut out for a career in broadcasting on the account of his speech flaw.

Whosoever is keeping the young man on the show is doing him a great disservice thereby making him an object of ridicule in the eyes of the public.

Personally I just can't stand him hemming and hawing trying to pick his words in order makes his points heard.

Many of which he never make as far as I know. And it's a shame.

On the part of Godwin Enakhena maybe it's all down to preferential treatment.

I could recall that in time past, people have called in requesting that they be featured on the show even as interns. And I remembered that Mr Godwin has always turned them down for lack of openings.

While I agree that opportunities around him, though glamorous, are few and far between; I nevertheless believe the available ones should only go to qualified persons strictly on merit.

And not dole out to oil the wheel of friendship and comradeship as it were.

Anything short of this would only portray Godwin Enakhena as bias and nepotistic person which he is not.

In all entireties, I know stammerers do make good musician.

The logic still beats my imagination even as we speak.

The late Fuji music icon, Chief Sikiru Ayinde Barrister, was a classic example.

But I can't remember any stammerer who is a broadcaster.

Para venture you know of any, please don't hesitate to let me know.

I would be more than glad to report it to the world as a reference point for the likes of Johnson.

But for now there’s none and I hope Johnson knows this and stopped embarrassing himself on a national radio trying to be what he cannot be till Kingdom come.
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