Former Governor of Abia State and Chief Whip of the Nigerian 9th Senate, His Excellency, Chief Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu today, hosted dignitaries from all walks of life who stormed Camp Neya; Kalu’s country home in Igbere, Bende Local Government Area of Abia State as he (Kalu) and other members of his family celebrate 10th memorial anniversary of his late father, Chief Johnson Uzor Nsiegbe Kalu.
Late Chief Kalu who was born at Ndi-Egberi Iruka compound, Umuisi, Igbere in 1920, died in 2010.
The event which was officiated by the Prelate and Moderator, General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, Nzie Nsi Eke who was assisted by the President Vision Africa Radio, Bishop Sunday Onuoha also attracted the presence of the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, Governors of the Southeast (Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Gov. Hope Uzodinma, Gov. David Umahi, National Assembly Lawmakers including Senator Theodore Ahamefule Orji, Members of House of Representatives; Benjamin Kalu and Rt. Hon. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha and among other political stalwarts including the 2015 and 2019 Governorship candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Dr. Alex Otti who is now a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The governor of Abia State was conspicuously absent from the event, causing attendees to query the rationale behind the absence of the host governor; Okezie Ikpeazu from an event that attracted dignitaries across party lines including sister states’ governors.
In his homily, the Prelate and Moderator of Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, His Eminence Eke urged Christians and those in attendance to ensure that they live a life that would be worthy of emulations.
The cleric who took his scriptures from Genesis chapter 50 stated that the late Pa Kalu was a man whose life has a lot to teach.
The Prelate who used Joseph as an example posited that a good leader must live a life that tells story.
In his speech, the Senate Chief Whip, said that though his father asked them not to throw party in celebration of his death, they chose the event of his memorial to appreciate his efforts in raising them.
Kalu who thanked the Senate President and others for standing behind him during his incarceration assured that he was committed towards ensuring that he discharges his legislative duties for the good of his constituency and Nigeria as a whole.
Orji used the occasion to assure the passage of the budget of 2021 before the end d of the year.
This is even as he noted that the budget is important to the economy, fight against insecurity among meeting other challenges facing the country.
Meanwhile, the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan on Sunday backed traditional title of Nwanne Di Na Mba (brother in Diaspora) of Igbere in Bende Local Government Area of Abia State.
This is as he used the occasion of the 10th memorial ceremony of father of Chief Whip of the Senate, Sen. Orji Uzor Kalu; Late Chief Johnson Uzor Nsiegbe Kalu to call for the unity of the country.
Lawan speaking after being conferred with the Nwanne Di Na Mba traditional title by the Igbere traditional rulers led by Chairman Bende Traditional Rulers, HRM Eze Uwakwe Ukaegbu said Nigeria can achieve more with unity regardless of their political, religious and social affiliations.
The Senate President who noted that Abia has three out of the twenty principal said that the people of the southeast shouldn’t shy away from being at the National Politics, but to champion having a shot at the helm of affairs of the country.
According to Lawan, all the southeast need to do is to sit and discuss with other ethnic groups in pursuant to their political interest at the center.
“Abia is a home of whips. Abia is a home of unity; that is why we have all the members of the National Assembly from the state here.
“Abia has three out of twenty principal officers in the National Assembly. The people of the southeast should champion being at the center of action in Nigeria.
“You should not shy away from being at the center of politics in on the country.”
On the traditional title conferred on him, Lawan said he now sees himself as an indigene of Igbere and thanked the traditional institution for finding him fit for the title.
The Senate President who noted that the event was supposed to be a solemn one said that he was happy that Kalu’s father raised children who are responsible and united.
In their goodwill messages, President Muhammadu Buhari represented by the Minister of State for Mines, Uche Sampson Ogah, Enyinnaya Abaribe;Senate Minority Leader, House of Reps Deputy Chief Whip;Rt. Hon. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, Senator Theodore Ahameule Orji, among others were part of the dignitaries in attendance.
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See pictures of the memorial anniversary below