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Ohanaeze to give ex-Gov Ezeife posthumous ‘Hero of Igboland’ award

The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Igbo apex socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has resolved to honour the late former Governor of Anambra State, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife, with a posthumous award of the ‘Hero of Igboland’.

This contained in statement the Igbo body issued on Wednesday through its National Publicity Secretary, Dr Alex Ogbonnia.

Ogbonnia said that the decision was taken at the plenary section of the NEC held on Tuesday in Enugu, presided over by the President General, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu.

The proposal for the award according to the statement was presented to the National Executive Committee of Ohanaeze Ndigbo by Chief Iwuanyanwu, who recalled various roles played by late Ezeife who was fondly called ‘Okwadike’ in promoting the cause of not only the Igbo but Nigeria at large.

He cited the commitment of Okwadike in his assignment as the Ohanaeze representative in the court matters related to the incarceration of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.

“In addition, Ezeife was the Chairman, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Elders Council for Abuja and the Northern Nigeria as well as a Member of the Presidential Advisory Council of Ohanaeze Ndigbo.”

In justifying the proposed award, Iwuanyanwu said that the former governor stood with the Igbo when it mattered most, adding that he “never equivocated on issues affecting the Igbo”.

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Ohanaeze leadership, however, directed all the “organs and structures of Ohanaeze Ndigbo to participate fully at the various stages of the burial and funeral ceremony for our great son, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife.”

Other resolutions reached by the NEC at the plenary according to the statement include the establishment of some vital committees which include:

“Committee on Sports; this aims at reviving sports competition amongst the Ohanaeze Ndigbo states. Committee on Relief Agency; this aims at harnessing the enormous Igbo resources for the benefit of the vulnerable and the less privileged in Igboland. Committee on Agriculture; Ohanaeze frowns at the inability of Nigerians to take advantage of the vast fertile and arable land at our disposal.

“Committee on Health Care; Ohanaeze is worried at the rate of emigration of the first rate Igbo physicians to foreign countries. They also expressed concern that the alternative or orthodox medicine is not fully explored in Nigeria. The Committee on Health Care will ultimately curtail the foreign medical tourism that has become the norm in Nigeria.

“Committee on Interface with the Igbo Market Unions; the Igbo traders should be mainstreamed into the Ohanaeze activities. Ohanaeze will interface with the Igbo traders all over the country with a view to identifying their needs as well as carrying them along in the Ohanaeze programmes.”

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The plenary also accorded a minute silence to late Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, the former governor of Old Abia State who passed on last week in Abuja hospital.

Ede Nwa Ede
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