As APGA Chairman says N1bn burial not enough
We’re privileged as Ekwueme’s children—— Obiora

ABUJA—MINISTER of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, has denied report credited to him, that the Federal Government had committed N1 billion for the burial ceremony of the late Vice President, Dr. Alex Ekwueme.

Late Alex Ekwueme

The denial came as the National Chairman of All Progressives Grand Alliance, Chief Victor Oye  said yesterday that the amount was not even enough for the burial of the late elder statesman.

Ngige

This is even as the This is even as the first son of the late former Vice President, Pastor Obiora Ekwueme has said that him and his siblings were privileged to be the biology children of Dr. Alex Ekwueme.

Senator Ngige in a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media, Nwachukwu Obidiwe in Abuja yesterday, described the report and the controversy that has followed the interview he granted to journalists on efforts of the Federal Government towards ensuring that the late Dr Ekwueme was given a befitting burial as misleading and needless.

Ngige said he did not attach any figure to what he termed “a deserving national tribute to one of Nigeria’s foremost statesmen,” adding that he only gave a summary of the number of projects the  Federal Government had executed to ensure he was given a decent burial.

According to the statement, “Perhaps the Hon. Minister has prempted the rhetorics of cynics and detractors  who could have easily run to town to claim the Federal Government has abandoned Ekwueme in  death.

“For the avoidance of doubt, what he did as a member of the Burial Planning  Committee was to give the details of the road rehablitation projects from the Awka end of the State and from Abia and Imo State axis, all leading to Ekwueme’s home town of Oko, as well as the    medical services, the  Mausoleum and others. But at no time did the Minister attach a figure of One Billion Naira!

“An unedited video and audio tape of the interview as recorded by both broadcast and print reporters is easily within reach.

“The Minister is an Igbo and knows fully well that just as a count is not taken of the number of children a parent is blessed with in Igbo tradition, the same tradition holds the burial rites and attendant expenses even more sacred to warrant such display of figures.

N1b burial not enough
As controversy continued to trail the claim by the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, that the Federal Government had spent N1 billion on the burial of Dr. Alex Ekwueme, the national chairman of All Progressives Grand Alliance, Chief Victor Oye  said yesterday that the amount was not enough for the burial of the late elder statesman.
Speaking in an interview in Awka, Oye said Ekwueme deserved more than one billion naira burial budget from the Federal Government, describing the late second republic Vice President as a man who, on his own, achieved greatness.
He said, “What is N1 billion to Ekwueme? He deserved more than that. Ekwueme is worth more than N100 billion by his personal achievements. He was a rich man by every definition.
“ If I were the Federal Government, I would not have pronounced the figure because Ekwueme deserved more than that.”

We’re privileged as Ekwueme’s children—Obiora
Eulogising his father, Ekwueme’s heir apparent said they were most privileged to have him as father because he was a man of peace, integrity and of high character standard.

Pastor Ekwueme made the remarks at the Service of Songs, Tributes and Hymns at the Cathedral Church of Good Shepherd, Anglican Communion, Enugu, yesterday.
Ekwueme jnr said “Today, we celebrate him knowing that his legacy lives with us. As his night has come, we believe the day has come for many more Nigerians. We will try to replicate his legacy.”

Ekwueme’s children accompanied by their mother, Beatrice, read the first and second readings of the service.
Former Minister of Science and Technology, who also was Governor of the defunct Central Bank of Biafra, Dr. Sylvester Ugo described the late Ekwueme as a man of intellect and vision, who was humble, not flamboyant despite his moderate wealth.

Ugo said Ekwueme never succumbed to the temptations of politics, regretting that the military threw him into prison even when Ekwueme came out as Vice President poorer than he went in.
“To him, government was about service and not an avenue for money making. Therefore, in morning him, let us not forget about his legacies,” said Ugo.
Scriptures of the service were taken from the books of St John, Romans, Thessalonians and Ecclesiastes.

Bishop of Oji River Diocese, Archbishop Amos Madu noted that Ekwueme was a true Anglican who did not joke with worship of God despite his position in the society.

Ekwueme, a true son of Igbo land—Bishop Udeh
Meantime, the General Overseer of Mount Zion Faith Global Liberation Ministries lnc. (a.k.a By-Fire-By-Fire), Nnewi, Anambra State, Bishop Abraham Chris Udeh has described late Second Republic Vice-President as a true son of Ndigbo.

Lauding Ekwueme’s virtues, Bishop Udeh noted Ekwueme’s regime as Vice-President to former President Shehu Shagari was beneficial to Ndigbo in general, having attracted so many projects to the South east region then.

Udeh who paid a glowing tribute to the departed elder statesman, said Ekwueme was equally instrumental to the amnesty granted to Ikemba Nnewi, Chief Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu who was on exile then, adding that Ekwueme deserved full honour from Ndigbo in particular and Nigeria in general.

He contended that it was apparently because of Ekwueme’s favour to Ndigbo then that led to the military coup-de-tat carried out by General Muhammadu Buhari, adding that ever since Ekwueme left the corridors of power, no other Igboman has been allowed to smell the seat of power as either the president or vice, except Commodore Ebitu Ukiwe who held sway as Chief of General Staff and was removed by Babangida within a short period of time because he is an Igbo man.

On the current leadership trend in the country and the marginalization of Ndigbo, Bishop  Udeh said that it was out of hatred that the Buhari administration proscribed members of Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB and tagged them a terrorist group, giving free hand to the killer Fulani herdsmen.

who have been terrorizing farmers to continue to operate as they like.
According to Bishop Udeh, “ wonder why Buhari refused to restructure the country and and why he continued to see IPOB as a terrorist group”.
“For this reason, he continued, I hereby advice that every tribe in Nigeria should stay from Nigeria (boycott Nigeria) that is to say that Nigeria should be divided where  everybody should go and rule themselves.

“I hereby call for the separation of Nigeria. Everyone should walk away. Afterall what are Herdsmen contributing to Nigeria, rather they are on their own personal business it is on their own personal business and they have nothing valuable to contribute to national affairs”.

“Why should they be allowed to be killing people, causing jihad war and using it as jihad point to Islamize Nigeria. The nation’s military dropped the 1960 constitution and establish the constitution that will favour only themselves.

“So, we are still begging Buhari to accept the restructuring proposal which he and his cabals refused to accept. I call for urgent division of Nigeria as an alternative so that everybody will go.

“Let every tribe walk away from Nigeria, because it is not only one part of the country that should continue to rule and Islamizing, forcing everyone to Islamic religion by destroying and killing people.

“I am also disappointed with our so-called big pastors in Nigeria who are keeping silent because they are benefiting much from these nonsense governments in power.”.

fused to restructure the country and and why he continued to see IPOB as a terrorist group.

“I hereby call for the separation of Nigeria. Everyone should walk away. Afterall what are herdsmen contributing to Nigeria? They are on their own personal business  it is on their own personal business and they have nothing valuable to contribute to national affairs”.

“Why should they be allowed to be killing people, causing jihad war and using it as jihad point to Islamize Nigeria. The nation’s military dropped the 1960 constitution and establish the constitution that will favour only themselves.

“So, we are still begging Buhari to accept the restructuring proposal which he and his cabals refused to accept. I call for urgent division of Nigeria as an alternative so that everybody will go.

“Let every tribe walk away from Nigeria, because it is not only one part of the country that should continue to rule and Islamizing, forcing everyone to Islamic religion by destroying and killing people.

“I am also disappointed with our so-called big pastors in Nigeria who are keeping silent because they are benefiting much from these nonsense governments in power.”.

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