…Mark father’s 50th Ofala celebration in style
•Ugwuanyi happy, urges other philanthropists to emulate him
Aloy Madu, Enugu
The think-home and self-help philosophy of Ndigbo has continued to record positive results across the region.
Since the nation’s independence in 1960, individuals, corporate bodies and communities have made enormous contributions to the social, economic and educational development of their towns through the establishment of solid life-saving infrastructure and award of scholarships to boost learning.
It is on record that the late former president of Nigeria and the Owelle of Onitsha, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe built the country’s premier university, the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) with funds raised from palm produce.
Apart from UNN, there are several other monuments located in different parts of Igboland that were built without government’s support.
It was in response to this age-long practice that a young Port-Harcourt-based philanthropist, Prince Lawrence Eze, decided to give his Mburubu community, in Nkanu East Local Government Area of Enugu State, something to cheer and remember for life, when he constructed a 4.5km asphalt road with street lights to alleviate their suffering and enhance the evacuation of farm produce to Enugu and other states of the country. The road links Nara through Mburubu to Nome rail lines. The prince had also since 2013, rehabilitated three bridges linking the communities of Ugbawka-Nara-Mburubu and Nomeh.
The commissioning of the road project was, however, part of activities lined up to mark the 50th Ofalla festival of his father, the traditional ruler of Mburubu community, Igwe Emmanuel Eze, the Ozulumba I of Mburubu, who has been on the throne for 50 years.
Speaking while commissioning the project, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi re-emphasised the need for the participation of the private sector in the development of the country.
Governor Ugwuanyi, who was full of praises for Prince Eze for touching the lives of his people, noted that the country needed more people like him to move forward, saying that the government alone cannot meet all the needs of the different communities.
While congratulating the Mburubu community for having a son like Prince Eze, the governor expressed joy that the road network was completed and delivered before the rainy season, when the farmers would need it most.
He called on corporate organisations to emulate the Prince of Mburubu example and support governmentin its rural development drive. In his brief remarks, Prince Eze, who
believes in action instead of much talking, told the people that his philanthropy was a continuous exercise, stressing that his target was to rehabilitate all roads within the community.
He stated that the only way he felt he could appreciate God for His gift of life and resources, was to give a face-lift to his community and put smiles on the faces of his people through roads construction and award of scholarships to indigent students from primary school to the university level.
He said that he also believed the luxury of good road network should not be the exclusive preserve of those in urban areas, adding that those in rural communities should have a taste of it.
He thanked the governor for coming to personally commission the road project despite the short notice.
Earlier, the President General of Mburubu Town Union, Prof. Alphonsus Njoku, said the road project was a great relief to Mburubu and neighbouring communities, pointing out that for the past 100 years, movement in the area had remained difficult for his people, forcing them to trek long distances to sell their farm produce.