The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) officer, Shem Obafiaye, who became famous for the viral ‘Oga At The Top’ remark, has opened up about the interview, saying the development affected him psychologically.
In 2013, Obafiaye, then the Lagos Commandant of the NSCDC, gained widespread attention during an appearance on a Television’s programme.
When asked to provide the NSCDC’s website, Obafaiye replied, “The website is… excuse me… wait… it can only be made known by my Oga at the top,” pointing skywards and smiling broadly.
About ten years after the development, Obafiaye opened up about the remark which led to humorous memes, danceable tunes, and ‘Oga At The Top’ emblazoned on T-shirts.
When asked if the interview that resulted in his deployment affected him psychologically, he said: “Definitely, it has to because I had never gone through such in my life, but with the words of my cousin, ‘I know you have a future; if you are ready for national recognition, be ready for national embarrassment, harassment, and insults’.”
Obiafiaye noted that “Immediately after the interview—and I was changed—my principal, who is my commandant general, just asked me to rest. I was at home for one month rest before they moved me to Oyo State Command,” he said on Tuesday.
Addressing the impact on his family, Obafiaye said his son often came home, mentioning being called ‘Oga at the Top’ by classmates.
Despite this, he emphasised that it was part of the experience, not a crime, and that he had not faced any negative consequences.
Reflecting on the reactions of colleagues and superiors, Obafiaye noted that they did not respond negatively.
Laughing over the replay of the video during the interview, he expressed forgiveness to those who made caricatures and acknowledged the influence of social media in the “new age.”
After ten years, Shem Obafiaye was last week promoted to the rank of Deputy Commandant-General and also revealed on the show that he has retired from service.