The five governors of the South-Eastern states were conspicuously absent at the funeral service and entertainment of guests in honour of the late Biafra hero and civil war veteran, Col. Joseph ‘Hannibal’ Achuzia, on Friday in Asaba.
South-East geo-political zone is generally regarded as Biafran territory, and the fallen warlord was said to have made enormous sacrifice to protect the people of the region defend Igbo race in today’s Nigeria.
Besides, Achuzia was a former secretary general of the apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohaneze Ndigbo where he further propagated the ideas of Igbo nation which he stood for till his transition on February 26, this year.
Governor of Delta State, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa was represented at the events by his Commissioner for Water Resources, Mr. Fidelis Tilije. President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief John Nnia Nwodo led other top executives of the socio-cultural organization to the events.
At the funeral service held at his residence in Idumojei quarters, Asaba, and conducted by the Brotherhood of the Cross and Stars, the preacher, Chukwuma Dike described material acquisition in life as vanity.
“Everything is vanity in this life. Your children cannot use your Ph.d to earn income when you are gone. They cannot access your bank accounts unless they follow the processes to change the signatory,” he said.
The cleric described the name ‘Achuzia’ as a key that can open any door as a result of the towering legacies he left behind, and urged his children to remain united to sustain the values of the late Biafra hero who held the traditional title of Ikemba of Asaba.
Meanwhile, in a condolence message published in the brochure of the event, Governor Okowa said Achuzia was an epitome of virtues.
“A veteran of the Nigeria civil war, a leader of thought, inspirational community leader, bridge builder, elder statesman and above all, selfless leader whose life time achievements transcended community and national boundary.
“I recall that despite being a Deltan, Col. Achuzia rose to become the secretary general of the pan-Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohaneze Ndigbo, a platform from where he fought relentlessly for the advancement of his people,” he stated.
Also, Imo State Governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha in his message stated that Achuzia was a combatant and seasoned soldier “whose precision in the discharge of his military duties was second to none.
“His contributions toward a united and indivisible post war Nigeria was unrivaled. This was evident in his pontifications on poignant contemporary political issues.
“His rare sense of diligence, organizational prowess, indefatigable and intrepidness during the Nigeria-Biafra civil war earned him the name ‘Hannibal’ from his friends and foes.
“In his capacity as a commander on the Biafran side, Hannibal displayed his administrative ingenuity and laid foundation for the prosecution of the 30 months war. However, he surrendered and joined hands in the building of one Nigeria. He was indeed a great patriot and worthy statesman.”
The late Ikemba of Asaba will be buried at his Idumojei residence in Asaba by midnight of Saturday April 14, according to the customs and tradition of Asaba people.
Source: The Sun