Sen Akobundu, (right); Rep Onuigbo, (left) with his wife and friends 

Senator Austin Akobundu, representing Abia Central Senatoral District and Rep. Sam Onuigbo,  Member (South-East) Governing Board, North-East Development Commission  (NEDC)  have promised to work together to fast track the total development of Ikwuano Local Government Area, Abia State 

The two political stalwarts from Ikwuano made this known at Inyila Ibere during the celebration of the 24-year progressive reign of His Royal Majesty Eze Prof. Ezeudo Samuel Ifenwanta (Ugwu I of Ugwu Ibere). 

In his welcome address, Eze Prof. Ifenwanta welcomed everyone to the new year, and tasked them to be committed to community development. He especially charged political leaders to leverage their positions to improve the physical and social welfare of the people. Ezeudo Ifenwanta also stressed the need to improve on the existing educational standard, with special emphasis on protecting the Igbo cultural heritage and language.

He seized the opportunity of the occasion to recognize remarkable sons and daughters of Ikwuano who have made impacts in the clan and conferred them with chieftaincy titles. This included High Chief Mgbechi Orji, from Amaoba Oboro, who was confered with the title of Enyioma I of Ugwu-Ibere; Chief Sunday O. Kalu (Ihe Abatala I of Ugwu-Ibere); Chief Engr. Chukwuma Onwunaruwa (Nnanyerugo II of Ugwu-Ibere); and High Chief Jonathan Enyinnaya (Omenuko I of Ugwu-Ibere).

Rep. Onuigbo while speaking at the event described  Eze Prof. Ifenwanta as a pacesetter, specifically recalling that the Royal Majesty  introduced the practice of having a Bishop pray for him and the community, which has now become a recognized standard for coronation.

He promised to continue to leverage his position to work for community development in collaboration with other political leaders, especially the Senator representing Abia Central Senatorial District, Distinguished Senator Austin Akobundu, who graced the occasion.

“Your Majesty your message is well received. We are happy to be in government and I’m also here with the Distinguished Senator representing Abia Central Senatorial District, Senator Austin Akobundu, and we will continue to seek ways and means of collaborating to ensure that we bring about the needed development in our community”, Rep. Onuigbo said.

He congratulated Eze Prof. Ifenwanta on his reign for nearly a quarter of a century, which has brought peace and immense development to Ugwu Ibere Autonomous Community and beyond, praying that God protects and guides him as he continues to lead the people of Ugwu Ibere to prosperity.

In his speech, the Senator representing Abia Central Senatorial District, Sen Austin Akobundu described the event as a very special day that marked the 24th anniversary of the reign of Eze Prof. Ifenwanta and the creation of Ugwu Ibere Autonomous Community. 

He praised His Majesty for doing a good job,  especially ensuring that there is peace and development in the community. Senator Akobundu recalled that he was conferred with the Chieftaincy title of Ọchịagha I of Ugwu-Ibere by His Majesty Eze Prof. Ifenwanta during last year's (2023) celebrations, where His Majesty offered a very special prayer for him and prophetically said that he would become a Senator which God graciously granted. He described Rep. Onuigbo as a brother who performed well while he was a representative of Ikwuano/Umuahia North/ Umuahia South Federal Constituency and also in his present position in government.

“I will be needing him, and we will be needing each other. Both of us agreed that we will collaborate and work together to make sure that our people will feel the impact of our privileged positions”, Sen Akobundu said.

He thanked Eze Prof. Ifenwanta for his royal and noble service to humanity, praying that God will grant him many fulfilling years in good health as he continues to serve.

Also in attendance at the event were: the member representing Ikwuano Constituency at the State House of Assembly, Hon. Boniface Isienyi, and Chief Uzodinma C. Okpara, the son of the late illustrious leader, Chief Michael Okpara, among many other dignitaries.