Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State, yesterday urged Nigerians to study the late Ikemba of Nnewi, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, and use his ideals to advance the frontiers of peace, national unity and development.
Governor Akpabio, who spoke during a condolence visit to Ojukwu’s widow, Bianca, stressed that Nigerians needed to study the philosophy and ideologies of the late Ikemba in order to find the pathway to lasting peace particularly at a time when the issues for which the deceased lived and died, were fast playing out in the country.
He insisted that Nigerians should always dialogue to achieve peace and not allow the country to move to the precipice of war, noting that the late Ikemba was a reluctant rebel and in him, Nigeria had a man who lived a good life, made valuable contributions to national development, exhibited true patriotism and greatness, and left indelible marks in the sands of time.
The Governor who was speaking in Kasabianka Lodge, Enugu, residence of the Ojukwus, described the late Dim Ojukwu as a crusader for justice and an icon even in death, and stated that Akwa Ibom people shared the pain of his loss because when he was alive he fought for the justice of the entire Eastern Region.
He advised the family not to mourn as a people without hope, because the late Ikemba, as a good Christian, had transited to higher glory and was assured of eternal rest for all his good works while he was on earth, adding that his good works on earth will also remain a lasting legacy and open doors of favour for his survivors.
In her response, Mrs. Ojukwu, expressed appreciation to governor Akpabio for the condolence visit and added that the enthusiasm and support the governor had given to the family so far has given them hope that the late Ikemba would be given a national burial.
She described governor Akpabio as a leader who has the quality of achieving greatness, and who was sensitive to the plight of his people, adding that “this is the only way a leader can be enshrined in the hearts of the people he governs”.