Igbo Day: Ohanaeze To Honour Igbo Heroes

Igbo Day: Ohanaeze To Honour Igbo Heroes

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By Ugochi Okoro

The Apex Igbo Socio-Cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide has announced its decision to honour some Igbo heroes and special Igbo allies in this year’s Igbo Day celebration.

The event which is slated to hold on September 29, 2023, at Michael Okpara Square, Independence Layout, Enugu State seeks to honour those who have impacted lives positively in society.

This was made known in a statement signed by Dr Chiedozie Alex Ogbonnia, the National Publicity Secretary, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide.

The Ohanaeze spokesperson said this was part of the resolutions reached at the meeting of the National Executive Committee (NEC), held at the Oriental Plaza, Orji, Owerri, Imo State on Thursday, 24 August 2023.
The statement said the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, (Ahaejiagamba Ndigbo) explained that the idea behind the post-humous awards to Igbo Icons and the Igbo Special allies is an expression of the Igbo attachment to excellence, steadfastness, gratitude and deep sense of history.

“At the same time, it serves as an encouragement, motivation and inspiration not only to the family of the deceased icons but to all the younger generations at large.”

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Chairman of the Central Planning Committee for the 2023 edition of Igbo Day, Professor Fred O. Eze disclosed that the event will be chaired by one of the popular Igbo philanthropists, Prince Engr. Arthur Eze (Ozoigbondu).

Those that will receive the post-humous awards include Rt. Hon. Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe, GCON, the father of Nigerian nationalism and the First President of Nigeria; Maj. Gen. Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi Ironsi, GCFR, the First Nigerian Military General and the first Nigerian Military Head of State; Chief Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, the Head of State of Biafra; Dr. Alex. Ekwueme, GCON, the former Vice President of Nigeria; Dr. Akanu Ibiam, the former Governor of Eastern Region; Col. Adekunle Fajuyi, the former Military Governor of the Western Region and  Chief M.I. Okpara, the former Premier of the Eastern Region.

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Others include Gen. Phillip Effiong, Second in Command to Biafran Head of State, defunct; Chief N.U. Akpan, former Secretary of the Eastern Region; Chief Dennis Osadebay, former Premier of the Mid West of Nigeria; and Chief Sam Mbakwe, the former Governor of the Old Imo State;  Dr. K. O. Mbadiwe; Professor Chinua Achebe; His Eminence, Alhaji Ado Bayero, the former Emir of Kano; Chief Adeniran Ogunsanya; Mrs Miriam Babangida; Sen. Francis Ellah, Mazi Mbonu Ojike; Chief Christian. C. Onoh; Chief Mbazulike Amechi; Chief Mrs Margaret Ekpo;  Chief Emmanuel Chinwenwo Aguma; HM Eze S. N. Woluchem; Justice Charles Dadi Onyeama and Chief Richard Ihetu (Dick Tiger).

The statement disclosed that a committee for the Honours Award and Special Duties had been set up which comprises eminent sons and daughters of Igbo land. The committee which will be headed by the Ohanaeze PG, Chief  Iwuanyanwu, has Chief Okey Nwadinobi as the Secretary.

Other members of the Committee include Sen. Adolphus Nwagbara, Sen. Anyim Pius Anyim, Sen. Ken Nnamani, Sen. Ben Obi, Prof. Mrs. Joy Ezeilo, Chief Simon Okeke, Dr. Mrs. Kema Chikwe, Professor Maurice Iwu, Iyom Josephine Anenih, Professor Nnenna Otti and Professor Epiphany Azinge.

The further disclosed that the Ohanaeze leader seized the opportunity of the meeting to brief the NEC about the organisation’s exploits at the United States where eminent Americans with established Igbo ancestry were admitted into the enviable Igbo cosmology. Such persons include the renowned African American computer wizard, Dr. Emmitt McHenry, who developed the .com code for the Internet E-Mails and Gen. William Ward, (Rtd), an accomplished American soldier who was the first commander of the U.S. Africa Command in Stuttgart, Germany in 2007; among others.

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The Igbo leader informed that because of the rate at which the Igbo both at home and in the Diaspora clamour for a relationship with the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, it has become exceedingly necessary to restructure Ohanaeze Ndigbo into zones, Europe with headquarters at London; the USA and Canada with the headquarters at Washington DC; South America and the Caribbean with headquarters at Brazil; Asia with headquarters at China; the Oceania and Africa with headquarters at ‎Johannesburg; Others include, the South West of Nigeria with headquarters at Lagos; the Northern Zone with headquarters at Abuja and the Eastern zone with the headquarters at Enugu.

The Igbo Leader commended the efforts of the South East Governors, led by His Excellency, Sen. Hope Uzodimma towards the restoration of peace and tranquillity in Igbo land. He reinstated his commitment to releasing Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, arguing that a court of competent jurisdiction has already freed Kanu and wondered why he is still being incarcerated.

Ahaejiagamba used the opportunity to inform members of a new approach he has developed for a restoration of peace in the South-East of Nigeria.

The members of NEC expressed immense delight that with the coming on board of Chief Iwuanyanwu, as the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, the organisation has experienced a quantum leap from its former habitat to an entirely new pedestal.

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The statement added that most members were fascinated with the glamour in Ohaneze within so short a time and spoke in appreciation to Iwuanyanwu for deploying his diverse global contacts, ingenuity, passion, intellect and vast business acumen in the service of the Igbo.

Some others commended the Ohanaeze PG for uncommon visionary transformative leadership skills.

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Ugochi Okoro
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