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Whilst our law firm was still coming to terms with the sudden demise of the first Associate, Mrs. Abiola Anyakwo Nee Morgan in Canada, we were hit with the news of the death of another worthy alumnus of the GEPLAW family, Ms. Oyintare Edith Yeri; she was simply known as Tare. This has been so hard to understand not to talk of accepting.
Tare was born about 40 years to Brigadier-General and Mrs Yeri, the first of three siblings in her nuclear line. She had her early schooling in Port-Harcourt and eventually studied law and was called to the bar year 2000. Being a child of a soldier, her life was characterised by frequent movements to different parts of the country in line with her father’s military postings. It is therefore not surprising that Tare developed friendships and bonds way beyond her immediate environment. One only has to look at the tributes in her honour pouring in from all parts of the country as well as overseas to appreciate this statement. She was a talented organiser and that was how I first met her. She was Secretary to the Ijaw Congress that was agitating for greater representation in in the political development of this country. I was involved with another group with primarily the same goals. When both groups decided to merge and to expand to become more national in outlook, Tare became the Secretary of the new body known at the time as the Association of Professionals for Good Leadership (APGL). Everyone agreed that she was ruthlessly efficient. When we felt our voices had been heard most of us returned to our primary callings. That was when Tare applied to and joined the George Etoml & Partners family (GEPLAW). She was an instant hit because at the time I was steering the Section of Business Law of the NBA to become the Section to beat in the NBA history. I found Tare’s organisational skills very useful. The Section did not have the resources then to engage Events planners so it fell on the young men and women cutting across various commercial law practices to get the job done. Tare excelled and even after my tenure, she served every SBL Council until she passed on. In fact she had told the current Chair, Mr. Olu Akpata she would be around to assist with the organisation of the 11th SBL conference coming up in June this year.
Tare was a rabid philanthropist. During the Amnesty program she successfully identified and trained or retrained many ‘militants ‘ who acquired skills with which they are fending for themselves today. She invited me to one of the graduation ceremonies of her Centre and the scenes were very emotional. Through her work she changed the lives of so many young men and women for the better. She also ran an NGO that operated deep in the creeks of the Niger Delta as she took her message of hope right to the source. To think she accomplished all these at barely 40 year of age!
As we come to terms with the reality that Tare has left us for good, I pray that God will comfort everyone whose life she touched. I pray especially for her father who must be severely heart broken at loss of such a star. I pray for her siblings and other relatives to whom she was a pillar of strength. With Tare the saying that not how long but how well comes to life. She did what many would spend a lifetime accomplishing in her relatively short sojourn here on Earth. May the Angels welcome one of their own and may she find rest in the bossom of our Lord.
Rest In Peace.
George ETOMI, FNIALS NPOM