I am an experienced Social Media practitioner with a strong passion for connecting with customers of brands. As part of a team, I presently work on the social media account of a leading European auto company. On this job, I have brought my vast experiences in journalism, marketing, search engine optimisation and branding to play.
By Morak Babajide-Alabi
Terror came calling in the United Kingdom once again. It did not come in daytime. It did not come when everyone was sleeping. It came at prime time when it knew maximum damage to the physical and psyche of the people and friends of Great Britain could be done.
Just like the coward it is, terror used the cover of the night to unleash damage on innocent people, most of whom, unfortunately, are just starting their lives. It came to shatter the peace of a city that is known world wide for tolerance. It came, and it took the future of many away. It came when people were having fun and looking forward to the start of a new week.
Terror, where is thy sting?
It was on Sunday night in the lovely city of Manchester that the coward behind the despicable attack chose to detonate his bomb. And according to initial reports by the police, it was same city where the coward was born and had grown up. He had chosen his time carefully.
He had chosen the Manchester Arena concert, where he was sure young boys and girls in the city, nearby and faraway will definitely be attending. It was Ariana Grande on parade on this night. And what do you expect? They all came, pouring into the hall to have a nice time with family, friends and enjoy with each other. The artiste is not known to disappoint. I am a witness of her capabilities. I saw her grow on Nickelodeon Channels in years gone by. My daughter was always on the channel and I had no choice than to sit on the sofa and enjoy with her.
She came to Manchester and delivered her best to the delight of the crowd. They rocked the show, sang and danced along with Ariana. Some were shouting, shrieking and screaming for more. But the curtain was drawn, and the artiste retired to the dressing room.
The crowd were not broken; they were not disappointed in the concert. The artist had delivered what she was paid to do. But if only she had known the evil that was at the door, probably she would have continued through the night, singing and hoping the attacker would change his mind and join the party. If only Ariana had known, she would have sung love songs that would melt the heart of the evil guy. Maybe, maybe, he would have taken off his vest or surrender himself to security agencies. Maybe!
Unfortunately, the evil man was waiting at the door. He waited for his “right time” to detonate his bomb. There was a loud bang, deafening and confusing. According to eye witnesses, there was the longest one second they ever had to live through before their brains engaged to the reality of what was going on. For the wicked terrorist, his planning must have taken days, weeks and months, but it took a few seconds to destroy the future of some and a few seconds to kill the dreams of many. He needed just a few seconds to end the lives of twenty two innocent people, among who was an 8 year old; who had in all innocence came out to see her musical idol.
There was pandemonium, screaming, pushing, running and crawling just to get out of the arena. And within minutes, there were dead bodies all over the places.
It is unfortunate that the attack could not be nipped in the “planning” by security agencies. But the efforts of the emergency team should be praised. They responded amazingly and were able to save a few lives. However, a homeless man has become the hero of this attack. He has been featured on some major television stations narrating how he reacted immediately after the attack. He described how he had to take nails and all sorts out of the skins of some of those affected.
This has brought him to public attention, and Britons being who they are, they want to “revamp” the life of this homeless man. There has been a huge outpourings of financial gifts at various sites set up for him. Many are donating to his fund because they said this singular act of his has brought back their faith in humanity.
As usual, people of the country are not giving in to the fear of these cowards who parade as religious fundamentalists. The outpouring of love and solidarity has been very impressive. From London to the high hills of Scotland, no one is cowered by this attack.
Despite the terror threat level now in critical, the people have refused to be broken. There have been a few solidarity rallies to tell off the terrorists. However, once again reality is starring us in the face that these cowards are still lurking around looking for where to cause maximum damage. I have confidence in UK security agencies to rise up to the task of policing and foiling any planned attacks.
We shall win this war.
In an update this afternoon, the Greater Manchester Police announced the arrests of four suspects. According to BBC News – Chief Constable Hopkins says: “We made three arrests in connection with the attacks overnight and this afternoon we entered an address in Manchester City Centre using a controlled explosion.
“Officers are currently at the scene but in order to do this safely we briefly had to close a nearby mainline railway, which has now been reopened. Those extensive searches will now continue.
“In total we currently have four people in custody.
“People will have seen a significant increase in the number of armed officers in Greater Manchester. We have been supported by forces in the North West and beyond in order to do this and this all forms part of our tried and tested plan for a major terrorist incident.
“With the threat level being increased to critical you will be aware that military are supporting policing across the country. This is about using the military across sites in London and elsewhere to free up armed police officers to support police forces.
“There are no military personnel patrolling Manchester but we are therefore able to receive additional armed policing support because of this plan. We are using this to help in our efforts enable the Manchester Games and Manchester 10k to go ahead.
“We are working with event organisers and Manchester City Council to review and enhance our safety and security.”
PHOTO CREDIT – BBC NEWS