Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City
Prominent Nigerians including top politicians, captains of industries, academia and personalities from other sectors of the economy yesterday converged on Uromi, the country home of former chairman, board of trustees of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Tony Anenih, as he bade farewell to his late wife, Dame Patricia Anenih.
Leading the guests at the Requiem Mass held at Saint Anthony Catholic Cathedral Uromi, Esan North-east Local Government Area of Edo state were former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan; Delta State Governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa; former Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole; former Governors of Delta State, Chief James Ibori and Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan; and Chairman, Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote.
Also present were Senators Bananas Gemade, Clifford Ordia and Matthew Urhoghide, Binta Garba; former Senator Odion Ugbesia, Hon. Cairo Ojougbo, Deputy National Chairman, Modu-Sheriff faction of the PDP; and members of the Federal House and State Assemblies.
Delivering a homily at a Requiem Mass officiated by the Archbishop of Benin Catholic Metropolitan Sea, Most Rev. Dr. Augustine Obiora Akubeze, the Bishop of Auchi Catholic Diocese, Most Rev. Dr. Gabriel Dunia admonished Christians to live a worthy life so that on the day they are being buried the preacher would not struggle to look for what to say about them.
According to him, “We who are alive should work hard so that good things can be said about us. We should live a good life so that the preacher on the day of our funeral will not struggle to look for what to say about us.”
Bishop Dunia who extolled the virtues of late Dame Anenih, described her as a good woman who strived to ensure a peaceful home for the family she left behind, adding that the peaceful nature of the deceased was what endeared her not only to her immediate family, but also to her entire environment.
The Bishop further noted that these qualities of late Mrs. Anenih prompted the Papacy to confer on her, Lady of St. Sylvester (an Associate member of the Papal Knight of St. Sylvester), a honour usually bestowed on people because of their dedication to the church.
The remains of late Mrs. Anenih were committed to Mother Earth at about 2:35 pm inside the palatial residence of Chief Tony Anenih in Uzenema-Arue village in Uromi town amid tears and expressions of sympathy.
In his homily drawn from John 14: 1-6, Dunian urged leaders and Christians alike to strive towards living well endeared lives styles that speak volumes for them, the society they live in and the nation at large.
He said “God cannot be fooled by anyone going by what obtains in all spheres of the society today where the word of Jesus Christ has been for mockery while some churches and men of God as well as comedians have converted it into making comic reliefs and shape it into another Shakespearean literature.
He noted that the way the world should celebrate anyone in death must be a matter of concern to all irrespective of their status in life. According to him, “If we die the world will miss us and heaven will rejoice if we live well, but if we leave this world and the world did not miss us, then we have not lived well”
“God is not fooled. Let your light shine and show your good works so that when they see you they will give praises to God”, the clergyman said, and described the late Dame Anenih as a woman of peace whose life was full of peace and service for God and humanity, as who also devoted her all to the bereaved husband.
In his remarks on behalf of the family, Mr. Anthony Anenih (Jnr) said the death of his mother was a difficult moment for the entire family, but expressed thanks to all the guests for their prayers and support.