Raphael Ede, Enugu
Governor of Enugu State, Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi who doubles as President of the Enugu Sports Club has expressed delight over the level of turnaround at the foremost recreational centre.
The centre is 90 this year.
He made this known when he led an array of dignitaries which included President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, former Anambra State Governor, Dame Virgy Etiaba, former Minister of Aviation, Mrs Fidelia Njeze, former Minister of State Foreign Affairs, Chief Dubem Onyia and traditional ruler of Nnobi, Igwe Nick Obi, among others, to inaugurate projects executed by the Chief Ben Etiaba-led Club Executive Committee at the Golf Section.
The projects inaugurated were the new face of the Golf section, the new Clubhouse, the Dame Virgy Etiaba Golf Range and the old colonial (1929) clubhouse.
The occasion also witnessed the formal swearing into of Chief Innocent Alilionwu, as trustee of the club and Prof. Agu Gab Agu as legal adviser.
Archbishop of Enugu Ecclesiastical Province (Anglican Communion), Most Rev. Emmanuel Chukwuma had a week earlier, also commissioned a number of projects initiated and completed by the Etiaba administration at the main club.
Some of the upgraded facilities commissioned by the cleric were the Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi Auditorium; the new face of Enugu Sports Club and the Museum and Gallery of Arts.
Etiaba’s administration did not only rehabilitate the centre but also brought God into its affairs with the introduction of monthly breakfast prayers at the club.
Inaugurating the centre, Chukwuma explained the need for Nigerians and leaders to involve God in whatever they do, saying that with the dedication of the club to God, it will now attract more people to have more confidence in coming to relax there.
The ceremony, which was well attended by members of the club, the cleric and well-wishers started with a special breakfast prayer session.
Archbishop Chukwuma called for the establishment of more relaxation centres across the country, just as he decried the high level of frustration in Nigeria due to successive bad leadership since the nation’s independence in 1960.
“Life is dynamic and coming here from 1929; you expect that Enugu Sports Club should have been transformed by the new generation so that it will look more attractive for people to come, it shouldn’t look more out-fashioned.
“I am happy that there is a museum side where old structures were still retained and the museum. So, this transformation is very much apt at this time so that it can attract the presence of younger generation and also changing the programme whereby we now accommodate something like breakfast fellowship with God which is very much ideal.
“There is so much frustration in Nigeria that people need a place to relax and Enugu State as it is now, we don’t have much places to relax than this sports club, for elderly people and mature people. So, it is important that people should have a place of relaxation and have the presence of God there so that people will feel comfortable and confident,” Chukwuma said.
Former governor of Anambra State, Mrs. Virginia Etiaba and mother of the executive chairman of the Club, said: “I know that without God this couldn’t have been transformed. God uses people to act and to transform; so, I am really very happy. I am elated to be alive to see one of my children being honoured today because he is leaving the stage after 24 months and anyone that had been here or who knew or who saw the picture of this club which was founded in the year 1929 will really say that he has performed.”
Earlier in his remarks, Etiaba, the outgoing Chairman, thanked members of the Club for their support which led to the modest achievements recorded under his watch, stressing that he promised God and himself that he would not complete his tenure without adding value to the Club.
A new chairman, Onyeka Onwe, formally assumed duties on Thursday, March 28.