From David Onwuchekwa, Nnewi
Many did not believe that it would happen, yet it came to pass that Victor Nwankwo, a spinal cord patient on wheelchair, was joined in holy matrimony with his caregiver, former Miss Chinaza Igwe, on Saturday, November 27, 2021.
Daily Sun had announced the uncommon marriage a day before the two love birds tied the nuptial knot.
Nwankwo has been on wheelchair close to two decades following a spinal injury he sustained after an encounter with a senior student the very day he had gone to live in his school’s dormitory in Onitsha, Anambra State while in secondary school. He said that happened in 2004 while he was 16, but he is now 33.
Despite his physical challenge, Nwankwo, who hails from Awkunanaw in Enugu State, resolved to marry Chinaza from Ishielu in Ebonyi State. Chinaza started with him as a caregiver and one thing led to another. He calls Chinaza ‘Akwa Ugom’ (my eagle egg) because of the degree of attention she has always paid to him.
The wedding took place at St Aloysius Catholic Church, Rehabilitation Centre for the Disabled, Old and Tramps (RECDOT), Ozubulu in Ekwusigo Local Government Area of Anambra State.
Before the officiating priest, Rev Fr Anselem Olua of the Sacred Heart, Nkunu Parish, Ozubulu, appeared at the altar, the church auditorium was already filled up with wedding guests and many inmates of the rehabilitation centre, both those invited and those who came on their own to witness the event.
Apart from Nwankwo and Chinaza, another couple was there too for wedding.
Fr Olua said: “In creation, God made them man and woman. “Man has every course to thank God for creating us human beings, not wild animals, not goats, flies or other living things that are not humans.
“God created Eve and gave to Adam who was joyous when he saw that God created Eve for him. Every woman needs a man. When a man has a wife, he becomes complete. Where there is no woman in the life of a man, there is a vacuum.”
He said that every woman always liked to be petted and loved. He urged husbands to love their wives, to appreciate their food; give them pecks and kisses at the appropriate times.
“Cut meat with your teeth and put into her mouth. Routine kills interest. Husbands and wives should avoid routine. They should always be happy and turn anything that can bring quarrel or provocation to something of laughter,” Fr Olua told the couples.
He encouraged them to always be open to each other. He made it clear that hiding secrets from each other was one of the agents of divorce. Thereafter, there was exchange of marital vows at the altar.
All the while, Nwankwo beamed with toothy smiles until the end of the church service having signed the marriage register.
But before the end of that segment, founder of the RECDOT, Mrs Rosemary Odunukwe, made a reflection on how Nwankwo came to the centre, her efforts to rehabilitate him before Nwankwo later secured an accommodation outside the centre.
She still made a firm promise to help the couple in any way she could when the need arose.q
People came in their numbers. Members of the Old Boys of Dennis Memorial Secondary School (DMGS), Onitsha were there in fullness, Nwankwo’s in-laws, friends and well-wishers were all at the church and where he organized the reception at Sacred Heart Central School Hall, Eziora, Ozubulu.
When the floor was open for Chinaza and Nwankwo to demonstrate their happiness and dancing skill, the couple transformed to a state of frenzy.
Sitting on his automatic wheelchair, Nwankwo began his own dance exhibition. He moved forward, backward, formed a circle in agreement with musical tunes coming from the DJ of the day. Looking at his movement, nobody will be told that he must have been a good dancer. Chinaza at this point never wanted to be defeated.
She applied ‘happy feet legwork and Gwaragwara’ dance styles which are in vogue. She moved left side, right side making sure she did not create enough gap between her and her newly wed. Nwankwo stretched his hands, caught her hips briefly while friends and well-wishers were watching in appreciation.
Amid the merriment, of course, the groom spared time to talk to Daily Sun.
He said: “Today is my day and I’m so glad. We have exchanged the marital vows and everything ended successfully. I thank God for today.
“It took me one to two years to plan the wedding. I prayed because you can’t plan an event without finance. I asked God to show me the way to go about it. Fortunately, God did it.
“At a point many began to call, many sent in things, cash, some handled the issue of the Master of Ceremony (MC), some donated various items to ensure the success of the wedding.”
He expressed appreciation to a whole lot of people, his Facebook friends, the Old Boys from the DMGS, The Sun Newspapers for spreading his news to the world, friends and well-wishers.
Nwankwo said he was happy to have officially begun to answer a married man with Chinaza as his wife.
On what would be his attitude in “the other room” now they have wedded, he said this is the time he would begin the actual work there.
“You shouldn’t joke with ‘the other room’. I really thank God that the accident that happened to me didn’t affect that side of me. Had it been it affected that side, I don’t know what I would have been saying.
“It’s quite safe, intact, active and functional. We are going to do our baby shower soon,” Nwankwo enthused.
Asked the number of children he would like to have by Chinaza, he said three or four would be enough for them and hoped that people of goodwill would help them to train them.
Nwankwo’s mother-in-law, Mrs Felicia Igwe, told Daily Sun that she was excited to witness the wedding ceremony of her daughter to her heartthrob.
“Initially, we objected to the marriage, but Chinaza insisted that she would marry him. They got married. I thank God who made this possible today.
“I later realized that this son in-law of mine is a very nice person. He is not walking but he is a man full of good ideas and can become great if supported. He is a very kind person. I pray God to bless them with the fruits of the womb,” she said.
Anybody wishing to support the couple should do so via Victor Nwankwo, First Bank 3134699643 or contact them through 09061138830.