By Amby Uneze in Owerri
Prominent Nigerians including former President of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former Minister of Labour, Senator Ike Nwachukwu, Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, Imo State governor, Chief Rochas Okorocha, and Obong of Calabar, His Eminence, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi Otu V were among prominent Nigerians that graced the burial of the Traditional Ruler of Owerri, His Royal Majesty, King Emmanuel Emenonyu Njemanze.
In his condolence message to the eldest son of the King, Prince Iheanyi Emenyonu Njemanze (Lineal Descendant of the King – Ozuruibgo V of Owere), Obasanjo noted that while the loss of a loved one at any age remained painful, the family of the late king should take solace in the fact that His Royal Majesty left behind a legacy of service and accomplishments to his domain in particular band the nation as a whole.
Obasanjo maintained that his wise leadership would be greatly missed by the Oweri Kingdom Traditional Council as well as his peers in Imo State. “I am impressed with his antecedents and contributions to his community and the larger community”, adding that apart from making his marks early as a pharmacist, the King brought his salutary influence to sue for peace, understanding and development in Oweri and its environs in the state.
The Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu described the passing of the King as a grave loss and a challenging moment for the people of Oweri, given the testimonies of his immense reach of goodwill and selfless devotion to the service of his people.
The Obong of Calabar, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi Otu V described the late King as a friend of his people, adding he lived and successfully established his business in Calabar as a pharmacist and associated peacefully with the people before retiring home and later crowned as King and Paramount Ruler of Owere Kingdom.
Senator Ike Nwachukwu in his condolence message recalled how he grew up together with the King in Lagos as a student at Yaba School of Pharmacy while he (Ike Nwachukwu) was at The Lagos City School also in Yaba. He recounted his relationship with the King even while he later left for the Nigerian Army and the King then completed his education and left for the Eastern Nigeria.
He commended the King for defending his people even up to death and urged the Oweri people and his immediate family to take solace that the Kind lived an exemplary life.
Governor Okorocha said that the death of the King was not only eventful, but manifested with concrete achievements that would stand the test of time.
The King who passed on to the great beyond in May 2016 at the age of 82 years was a renowned pharmacist and was crowned King was crowned on in November 11, 1989.
He ascended the throne as the 11th monarch of the dynasty, the 8th Njemanze on the throne and the 5th by title. He reigned as King and Paramount Ruler of Owerri Kingdom for 27 years and was the architect behind the Owerri Municipality and an advocate of peace and unity regardless the circumstance. His love for the people of Owerri and the government was enviable.