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Home Features Dramatic Side of Lagos Yamaha Showroom and Assembly Plant Opening

Dramatic Side of Lagos Yamaha Showroom and Assembly Plant Opening

By FEMI OWOEYE (Editor-in-chief, Motoring World International)

[dropcap]L[/dropcap]ast Friday’s opening of Yamaha assembly plant and showroom was grand indeed. It was not just because the Executive governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwumi Ambode arrived at 10AM prompt, which was unusual in this part of the world.

Neither was it because the event attracted the Charge de Affairs of Japanese embassy as well as the president of Yamaha Motor Corporation.

Aside the foregoing, the event reached a crescendo, when a pregnant African woman appeared on stage, ‘wriggling in pain of childbearing.’ All attention was on stage. It was a scene capable of getting photographers too carried away to realize a need to capture with their camera lens, a moment that might never replay.

My camera man did not capture it too. But my brain did.

The drama scene reeled a story of courtship, which led to marriage proposal, acceptance, marriage and pregnancy.

It was a drama, an effective spice for the last Friday’s grand opening of CFAO-Yamaha Plant and showroom in Lagos Nigeria.

Most attention grabbing part of the drama was the last stage of the marriage, the pains, and the process of childbirth and joy that followed.

The drama was a depiction of the initial agreement between CFAO, a European company and Yamaha, a Japanese company, whose relationship dates back to more than 60 years.

As demonstrated in the drama, few years ago, both CFAO and Yamaha agreed to form a stronger alliance that was akin to a marriage. That led to an idea of registering a joint venture known as CFAO Yamaha Motors Nigeria Limited, which resulted in the birth of a Yamaha Assembly plant and showroom, both of which were, last Friday opened in grand style.

Well, the drama was concluded with another scene that was really hilarious.

The side representing Yamaha were all female as against all male representing CFAO. The childbirth celebration led to real dancing to African drums of Bata, Omele, Ganga, etc. And to leave the stage, each male from the side representing CFAO  had to carry a female from the Yamaha side, a literary demonstration of Marriage, when said in Yoruba language :I-gbe-yawo ( I = Me; gbe= carry; ‘yawo = wife). That was done by three men, remaining a man and a female on the stage, still dancing to the non-stop African drum. At a point, the man scratched his head, obviously looking embarrassingly worried.

Worried over what?

He knew he is of lighter weight compared to his “stage wife”.  Yet they must not just walk off the stage. The tradition is that he must carry her off the stage, as in gbe-yawo.

Suddenly, the female bent down, picked him up like a 10-year-old boy off the stage. And the hall roared in laughter. lol

Oh no. While in the arm of his “wife”, you could see him covering his face with left hand.

Well what could officially be regarded as the height of the event of the day was the cutting of tape by His Excellency Akinwumi Ambode. But that will be forgotten soon. What would be remembered for a very long time, even by those who came all the way from France and Japan, is the drama. It was a moment that filled everybody’s mouth with laughter. That aspect of the event really explained why the organizers, Mr. Olivier Levigne and his team, tagged the event: “Grand opening…”

Yeah. Grand, it was.


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