By Alex Obiogbolu

Dibugwu Elizabeth Eziamaka Obiogbolu passed on to glory on February 15 2017. She was born in 1937 to the prestigious family of Late  Akunnia William  Chukwuma  Iweanya  of  Iyiawu  village of  Obankpa  clan of Onitsha and  Susana Mgbeke  Mejuobi  of  Aluoha  village,  Uli  in  Ihiala  Local Government Area.

Lizzy,  as she was fondly called,  commenced her primary education at Immaculata Primary School, Onitsha, a school run by Holy Rosary Sisters of the Catholic Archdiocese of Onitsha. While in school, teaching held a secret fascination for her and she consequently longed to become a teacher, to have an opportunity of moulding the young ones along the paths of rectitude. Not relenting in her desire, her  parents sent her  to Maria Regina  Teachers  Training College,  Nnewi  for her teacher’s grade III  certificate.

Lizzy  was mettlesome enough  at  Holy Rosary Convent School,  Nnewe,  OkigweArchdiocese,  which was the  first school she had her teaching experience. She was generally loved for her brilliance and attention to details, both in the  pupils’ academic pursuits and her realisation that the goals of academics goes  beyond  teaching and learning to include  training the young ones in manners and morals.   She did this happily for  half a  century, thus contributing in laying  the foundation of many successful men and women.

Her teaching career which started at the present Enugu state took her across Aba, Port Harcourt and  Lagos, where  she devoted most of her teaching years with the Ministry of Education, Lagos state, and retired as Headmistress.  Because of her belief in continued development, she took every available opportunity to improve herself  and would always encourage those about her to do the same. Whilst she was abroad in London  undergoing a diploma in Education,  the Nigerian/BiafranCivil War broke  out  in 1967.  For the love she had for her family she longed to go home as no assurances of their safety could assuage her queasy spirit.    Despite many failed efforts, she did not relent. At last, she abandoned her educational pursuit, travelled  to Lisbon and joined  a flight carrying relief materials  to Biafra via Gabon and through intricate net-working became re-united with her family in Port Harcourt.

She  was a community person and believed that responsible communal live was one of the cherished values we had as Africans. She always participated in  women groups and associations, especially  Ikporo  Onitsha, an association she contributed so much to  its development. She was  Secretary, Onitsha Progressive Women Association  and a member of the committee that saw to the conception and development of the  Community Hospital at Onitsha which is still ongoing.  She was admitted into the prestigious  “Odu”  society of Onitsha in August 1993 taking on the title,  “Dibugwu”  just  when her husband was initiated into the prestigious “Ozo” society.

She and her husband imbued in their children strong independence of thought and speech and the constant urge to contribute to the progress of the society through positive acts. Together they encouraged their children towards the paths of academic pursuits and excellence. Today, as always, her children owe her so much for their successes in life. Mama will be buried on April 28.

*Obiogbolu is an aspirant of the PDP ahead of the Anambra State governorship election.


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