Anambra State governor, Chief Willie Obiano, and other prominent citizens of the state are mourning the loss of the renowned writer and traditional ruler, Prof. Vincent Chukwuemeka Ike.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, and one of the governorship hopefuls in the state under the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Dr. Obiorah Okonkwo, have described the death of Eze Ndikelionwu as sad. The monarch of Ndikelionwu in Orumba North local government area of the state died at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Teaching Hospital Nnewi after a brief illness at the age of 89
In a condolence message to the family yesterday in Awka, Obiano regretted that he had lost one of the people that make his administration thick through his counselling. For Ngige and Obiorah, Anambra state had lost one of her finest who would be difficult to replace. The two top politicians in the state described the late monarch as a leading novelist and first generation writer, who had shown the light for others to follow not only in the state, but the entire country.
Obiano said Anambra State had lost one of her greatest assets and totems of excellence. Obiano said, “I am saddened by the death of HRM Eze Chukwuemeka Ike. He was always a regal presence around us here, bringing his wealth of experience to bear on the deliberations of the Traditional Rulers Council.” In a related development, the vice presidential candidate of the PDP, Mr. Peter Obi, has described the death of Ike as a call for celebration of a man who was good, kind and concerned about the progress of humanity.
In a release made available by his media office, Obi said that though it was customary to mourn the dead in Africa, the likes of Ike were exceptional and worthy to be celebrated for his liberating influence on the society through his personal conducts and the pervasive influence of his works of arts in the form of literature. Recalling his several encounters with the late professor, Obi said that besides reading some of his books as a student, that he was actually the one that issued him certificate as a traditional ruler of Ndikelionwu and thereafter worked harmoniously with him as a frontline traditional ruler.
Obi, who also recalled the foundation of Writers’ Club by Ike and his support for the noble project, called for its sustenance as well as the immortalisation of his legacies through naming of monuments in his honour. He said Ike was a scholar, teacher, administrator, writer and author. He was the traditional ruler of Ndikelionwu until his death. Some of Ike’s books included Toads for Supper, The Naked Gods, The Potters’ Wheel, Sunset at Dawn, The Bottled Leopard, among others.