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Igwe Alex Onyido (Ezechuamagha) who is the traditional ruler of Ogidi community in Anambra State, has asserted that the late literary icon, Prof. Chinua Achebe, ‘remains the pride and inspiration of Ogidi people.’
Onyido noted the late Achebe inspired the people of Ogidi so much, not just because he rendered service to the entire world through literature with his works as a novelist, poet, teacher and social critic, but also because he made indelible contributions to the development of the community with his creative instinct.
Speaking during the 10th-year memorial service organised by Ogidi community in Achebe’s honour at St. Philip’s Anglican Church, Ogidi, at the weekend, the monarch, noted that the community would continue to celebrate the late literary icon because he was at the centre of its development.
He recalled that Achebe, at some point, served as the President General of Ogidi Town Union, not minding his position as a global icon whose books had been translated into over 50 languages.
He added: ‘We are joining the rest of the world to celebrate Achebe, 10 years after his exit, because his contributions are still very relevant to the entire universe.
‘He remains a model and inspiration to all of us both old and young. At the age of 28, he wrote Things Fall Apart which shook the entire world. I am delighted to be the traditional ruler of the community where Achebe came from. I was invited by a Princeton University in the United States as guest in a function being organised in his honour.’
The monarch, however, lamented that both the Federal Government and the governments of the South East states were yet to immortalise him, noting that Achebe, as a social critic and defender of the oppressed, rejected National Honours Award twice in protest against bad governance in Nigeria and the marginalisation of his people.
Agreeing with the monarch, the National President of Ikenga Ogidi Family Union, Nebeolisa Mbelu, recalled that in 2013, former president Goodluck Jonathan, had promised that the Federal Government would immortalise Achebe, regretting that the government was yet to fulfill its promise.