EKWUNIFE: Zik Dedicated His Life To The Firm Establishment Of Democracy And Equity


“Hails High Chief Senator Ben Obi for instituting the annual lecture series in honour of the late Zik of Africa”

The Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District, Uche Ekwunife, PhD, has described the former Premier of Eastern Nigeria and first Nigerian President, Rt. Hon. Nnamdi Benjamin Azikiwe as a man who dedicated his life to the firm establishment of democracy and equity. This was contained in a press statement by Mr Kingsley Ubani, SA Media to Senator Uche Ekwunife.

She described late Nnamdi Azikiwe as a true Democrat and foremost Pan Africanist who believed in the restoration of the dignity of mankind and was an ardent promoter of Nigerian unity.

Ekwunife said this on Tuesday, November 16, 2021, while attending the 9 & 10 combined Zik lecture series anniversary celebration held at the ASUU Secretariat, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka.

Speaking at the event which had the theme, Security, Governance and Nation Building, the quintessential federal lawmaker noted that the late Owelle of Onitsha was a sound politician of repute, an inspiration, a role model by every stretch and a complete patriot whose character was worthy of emulation.

She hailed the benefactor and convener of the lecture series, High Chief Senator Ben Obi for instituting the annual lecture in honour of the late Governor General of the old Western Region.

“It is only true to say that since 1978, Senator Ben Obi has played active roles in the restoration of Nigerian democracy. As a former senator who represented our Senatorial zone between 2003 to 2007, Sen. Ben Obi was among other like-minded patriots who stood vehemently against the infamous Third Term Agenda from seeing the light of day. As Special Adviser of Inter-Party Affairs at some point, he initiated the idea of the National Peace Committee under the Jonathan Presidency.”

“Ben Obi, a highly principled crusader for the cause of the downtrodden, is in many respects, like the great Zik. He is a bridge builder and unifier, pan Nigerian and Pan Africanist. He is a man who plays politics without bitterness. The good people of Anambra Central Senatorial Zone identify fully with Senator Ben Ndi Obi and the Nnamdi Azikiwe University in the immortalization of the Zik of Africa.”, the grassroots-friendly lawmaker noted.

The guest speaker, His Excellency, John Kayode Fayemi, the Governor of Ekiti State who delivered the lecture, entitled, Nation Building: Between Restructuring and Autonomy noted that the Late Zik acknowledged Nigeria’s diversities in ethnicity, religion, tongues and custom but regarded Nigeria as the motherland. He stated that achieving a sense of common identity, strong institutions and shared values as a nation is a process of building trust and finding unity amidst our differences.

The programme which was chaired by the Governor of Ebonyi State, His Excellency, Engr Dave Umahi represented by his Deputy, Dr. Kelechi Igwe also had in attendance the Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Professor Solo Chukwulobelu.

Others present include the wife of the late Zik, Prof. Uche Azikiwe, Traditional ruler of Enugwu-Ukwu and Royal father of the day, Igwe Ralph Ekpeh represented by Chief Clement Nwafor, Dr Obiora Okonkwo amongst others.

The Enugu State Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Abia State’s, Okezie Ikpeazu and Imo State’s, Hope Uzodimma were special guests of honour.

Highlight of the event was the foundation stone laying of the Senator Ben Obi Institute for Legislative Studies and Zik lecture series by Obi Alfred Achebe.