By John Mayaki“Well, I am a family man,” he began, relaxing in a cream coloured three-seater sofa beside a Chinese ceramic lamp that brought a colourful ambiance to the yellow walled sitting room. He rubbed his hands on his trousers, slurred his words, and at once, with the natural and unrehearsed nature of the whole documentary, became the family man he said he was. “Despite my public image, I don’t play with my family life; I am what I am today because of the love and support I have enjoyed from the family institution.”Draped in a pink plain thick collared shirt, and a vanish blue trouser, a metal of gold flashing in the fourth finger of his left hand, Pastor Ize-Iyamu with a mien temperament, like one reflecting on a dear memory, soon began talking of his marriage. Had he been a man without depth, he would have begun where all men begin when marriage is the subject: the wife. But like philosophers who have the addictive attitude of approaching all subject from the etymology, from the roots, Pastor Ize-Iyamu, whose pair of medicated eyeglasses now made him look like Jean Paul Sartre, the champion of existentialism, started from the roots too.In Ize-Iyamu’s understanding, his method and role in politics was influenced by his parents’ family. A large house that was open to people; a large house where people bring their problems, however the magnitude, and go home with a solution. This, according to the pastor, made him interested in people and conflict resolution at a very early age.“I grew up in a family that was supposed to be a polygamous setting,” the Pastor said, caressing his left leg, the camera panning to full view, creating an image of a man summoning a distant memory that he was very delighted in. “[But] we were so closely knit that I got to hear the word ‘half-brother’ [for the first time] in secondary school, and I was so shocked.” He, from the mouth of this secondary school classmate, got the definition and explanation of the term, but that altogether achieved nothing as he has already had the impression that they were one big family, united by blood and a socialization characterized by indiscriminate love.This frame of mind accompanied him into marriage where, before he began his own family, he became initially worried having seen and experienced a peaceful, beautiful family. His anxiety came from the question of who would become his life partner, if he would achieve the same harmony his parents accomplished, and in his own words, from the fact that there “was a difference between having a girlfriend and having a wife.” But that was a necessary worry, a kind of pause needed in the fast-paced expressway of romance and love, the little refrain that offers lovers the rare privilege of applying logic to their excited emotions. Yet, after this pause and ponder, he went ahead to ask his wife out; and much to his joy, it was a yes.“I can tell you that that decision is the best in my life,” he said, and then paused. He moved his hands up and down his left thighs, a fondling that seem to have become a habit. But at this exact moment, it was the ring in his finger that assumed significance, shinning brilliantly like a kryptonite. And then he said it, that splendid coincidence that is always endearing to recall. The Pastor and his wife, as he would say, “coincidentally share the same birthday—June the 21st.”“She has been my pillar, my counsellor, my prayer partner, she has been very supportive; she has given me three girls and a boy, and I look forward to coming home every day; I enjoy every moment I spend with my family,” the Pastor kept on talking, his face flushed with emotions as the documentary brought beautiful live feeds of, first, his wife, and then his children.“Due to my public engagement, I [have to deliberately] try and spend quality time with my wife and with my children, and most of the time I engage with them, I realize [as I have done also] from interacting with so many people, that one of the greatest problem in many homes is the lack of communication between the husband and the wife, between parents and children; and so because of that I spend time to talk with my wife—I summarize my own activities and then give her the opportunity to tell me of her experiences at her place of work.”From this touching moment of family details, the documentary began to vie off from the home front, now inclining towards public engagements. Yet there is something instructive about that trajectory movement: one must, first, get it right with family and home, before eyeing or gunning for public success. And this, considerably, has been demonstrated by Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s life. He could afford to contemplate whether one should jog or walk as a form of exercise as they get old because he had instituted peace, harmony, and love at home. Had he not, he would spend his life, old or young, not walking, not jogging, but running from the vice of tasteless and violent home.The documentary showcased the Pastor’s skill on the draught board as he discussed of tournaments that featured champions from Nigeria, Ghana, and Cameroon. He nurses the ambition of elevating the reputation of draught in Nigeria, bringing it to the level of the game’s cousin, chess. In his view, Nigerians wrongly think of draught as the uneducated man’s leisure. This, according to Pastor Ize-Iyamu, is false as he has seen, and as well, have friends who are lawyers, engineers, academics, and doctors who play the game. But while draught remains under the grip of such contentious argument, what is steadfastly true is that, with the country combatting the Covid-19 Virus, hence shutting and locking down society, Pastor Ize-Iyamu will be happily looking forward to return home, the delicacy of a warm family awaiting him.