L-R: Ohaneze president, Anambra, Chief Damian Okeke-Ogene; Chief Mbazulike Amechi; secretary, Chief Michael Nnawuzie and state women's leader, Mrs Rose Ekwenibe
The resurgent Ohaneze Ndi Igbo, Anambra State Chapter, led by Ichie Damian Okeke-Ogene, last Tuesday, continued its state-wide visit to stakeholders, Anambra leaders of thought, traditional rulers and community leaders.
Their first port of call was at the home of First Republic Minister of Aviation, Chief Mbazulike Amechi. From there, they visited the traditional ruler of Nnewi, Igwe Kenneth Orizu III, and lastly, the office of foremost Pro-Biafra activist and erstwhile National President of Ohaneze Ndi Igbo, Dr. Dozie Ikedife.
Speaking immediately after arriving the ex-minister's abode, the State President of Ohaneze Ndi Igbo Anambra State Chapter, Ichie Damian Okeke-Ogene, flanked by his secretary, Chief Michael Nnakwuzie and the administrative secretary, Chief Luke Onyekaonwu, said that the organization deemed it necessary to come and felicitate with Chief Mbazulike whom he said, miraculously survived a life threatening ailment.
The Ohanaeze state leader said it would be an unforgivable and abominable act if they failed to show moral, physical and material support to the man he described as a true Igbo son, noting that he (Mbazulike) started fighting the Igbo cause when some of them were still toddlers.
According to Ichie Okeke-Ogene, Mbazulike one of the few surviving Zikist Movement members, and the only living First Republic Minister, deserved to be appreciated for his style of politics which, he noted, was devoid of bitterness and mudslinging.
This is even as Ogene intimated him about the activities of the body so far in the state. Chief among what he told the elder statesman was the zoning resolution reached with the Anambra State Council of Traditional rulers, church leaders and relevant stakeholders in the state, including the media.
Ogene told Mbazulike that the body had succeeded in convincing many to adopt the zoning formula, noting that it was arranged in such a way that immediately after the North's eight-year tenure, power would shift to the South for another eight years and then back to the Central. He however made it clear that they never endorsed any individual in the zoning arrangement.
Responding, Chief Amechi thanked them for the visit, noting that he was more than prepared like never before to continue from where he stopped in Ohaneze related activities. He stated that he voluntarily pulled out when the then leadership started to misfire.
Similarly, the Okeke-Ogene-led executive also visited the traditional ruler of Nnewi, Igwe Kenneth Orizu. Speaking at Igwe Orizu's palace, Ogene said they were in his palace to show respect and also to thank the royal father for his fatherly role in the Ohaneze set up.
He urged him to assist the body by connecting them to those that would provide the needed logistics that would be used to move the organization forward.
Responding, the vice chairman, Igwe Nnewi Royal Cabinet, Chief Nnanyelu Kanu, expressed satisfaction with the present leadership of Ohaneze, assuring them of their support and goodwill.
In a related development, the Ohaneze Ndi Igbo train, while leaving Igwe Orizu's palace, proceeded immediately to Ikedife's Hospital, Nnewi, where they were received by foremost Pro-Biafra activist and former national President of Ohaneze, Dr. Dozie Ikedife.
Receiving them, Ogene described Dr. Ikedife as a courageous and fearless warrior, noting that he (Ikedife) sacrificed his youth for the emancipation of Ndigbo and for the overall development of the Igbo Nation.
He described Ikedife as the brain behind their quick successes, noting that he had always been there for them.
'I do consult him whenever there is an issue. He is the only person in the entire Ohaneze to have served as a state president and also a national president. Nobody has ever done that. We are here to have our September meeting as a mark of respect for Dr. Ikedife. We decided to hold it here in his office,' Ogene said.
Addressing his visitors, Ikedife, a medical doctor, singled Okeke-Ogene out for special praise, noting that he was overwhelmed with joy, seeing the entire Ohaneze state executive, as well Nnewi North executive in his office.
'I feel honoured seeing you people here. I will continue to offer myself for the service of Ndigbo,' he said.