Abia governor disgraced at Ojukwu's lying in state

While Ojukwu was celebrated, Theodore Orji was humiliated

Abia State Governor, Theodore Orji, was thoroughly humiliated Tuesday when a section of the crowd that thronged the Enyimba International Stadium, Aba, to witness the lying in state of the late Biafra warlord, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, booed him repeatedly and pelted him with satchet water.

It is not clear what angered the crowd about Mr. Orji, who was the host governor at the ceremony. But the Abia State helsman has become very unpopular for sacking public servants from other Igbo-speaking states in the employ of his state, and then ordering them to return to their home states.

Residents also say he has performed poorly as governor with unemployment and poverty soaring in his state, and Aba, the state’s commercial capital, reeking with filth.

A resident of Aba, who withnessed the incident, said when the governor arrived the stadium, he started waving to the crowd. But rather than wave back at him, some people in the crowd responded by throwing satchet water at him.

“Rochas Okorocha was the hero of the day and  my governor should hide his face in shame,” an eyewitness told Premium Times.  

“He got the  disgrace of his life today . The Idiot on arrival went to wave to his subjects who he abandoned all this  while but trust Aba people, they responded with sachet water,”  our source added.

But the governor’s ordeal did not end there. NAN reports that the colourful ceremony was almost marred when a section of the crowd booed him as he presented his speech, and chanted songs urging Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo to address the audience.

The pro-Okorocha slogans, which repeatedly interrupted the Abia governor’s speech, brought the event to an abrupt end.

Terribly humiliated, Mr. Orji however explained that it was agreed by the South-East Governors’ Forum “that only the host governor will speak during the lying-in-state ceremonies.”

The Aba ceremony is a continuation of the celebration of the life and times of Mr. Odumegwu-Ojukwu.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the people took their turn to pay tributes to Ojukwu and were also unanimous in saying that his death had brought a leadership vacuum in Igboland.

In his speech, Mr. Orji described the former Biafran warlord as a foremost “detribalised Nigerian and a visionary leader.

“Ojukwu was a detribalised Nigerian, who was born in the North, studied and lived in the West and domiciled in the South and is of South Eastern parents,’’ he said.

He further described him as a charismatic, dedicated and focused leader, who looked beyond his time.

The governor said that the Biafran war, which Mr. Ojukwu led, “opened our eyes to the need for a united Nigeria.”

Sen. Ike Nwachukwu, a retired General in the Nigerian Army, who served under Mr. Ojukwu in the 5th Infant Battalion, also spoke glowingly about his leadership qualities as his Commanding Officer.

Mr. Nwachukwu said that Mr. Ojukwu imparted positive leadership virtues in them, describing him as “a great man and one of the best dedicated soldiers the Nigerian Army has produced.”

Sen. Uche Chukwumerije remarked that Mr. Ojukwu’s lying-in-state in Aba was in respect of his wish, noting that the city was remarkably dear to his heart while he was alive.

Mr. Chukwumerije, who is the Vice Chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the event in Abia, said: “Aba is a place very dear to Ojukwu’s heart.’’

“Throughout Ojukwu’s lifetime, he cherished Aba because it is a projection of Enyimba spirit of vibrancy, courage, patriotism and selflessness.’’

Joshua Ogbonnaya, a professor, who is the LOC Chairman, described the choice of Aba as “apt” because it was the first place Ojukwu worked shortly after he returned from London.

Emma Adaelu, the chairman of the ceremony and an Aba-based industrialist, expressed happiness that Aba was one of the cities selected for Ojukwu’s lying-in-state, in line with his request.

Adaelu remarked that Aba played a strategic role in Ojukwu’s life, pointing out that “he received overwhelming support from the city and its people.’’

He described Ojukwu’s demise as a monumental loss to Ndigbo, saying that “he stood for the ideals and liberation of his people.

“Only God can replace this rare gem for Ndigbo,” he said.

NAN reports that Ojukwu’s wife, Bianca, was accompanied to the ceremony by the wives of Abia and Imo governors.

Governor Peter Obi of Anambra and the National Chairman of All Progressive Grand Alliance, Victor Umeh, were among eminent dignitaries at the ceremony.

There was also heavy presence of security operatives at strategic locations of the city and the stadium, while men of the Federal Road Safety Commission were seen controlling traffic in the town.


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  • Action Man

    This is an unfortunate sign that Gov Orji is disconnected from his people. he needs to quick arise and bring development to his people. I also salue him for not bringing ‘paid sycophants’ to sign his priase at the event as other Governors of neighbouring States do.

  • Ibuchukwu Ohabuenyi Ezike

    God bless Enyimba city. God bless Enyimba people. I respect you. I honour you and I wish the entire Igbo nation should emulate you and rise up to the occasion to deal blows at all these corrupt, visionless and wicked rulers that have taken over the land and brought big shame on our people. This is good moring in the evening to these idiots and criminal looters. One day must be one day. Ndiigbo shall be free.

  • Akudoude

    Anything good is worth commendable whether you like it or not. What we saw in Aba yesterday was a mark of irresponsibility on the part of hired hoodlums who did all they could to undermine proceedings. Basically, people in Aba, we are very lawless in everything we do. So I wasn’t surprised. What I think we need is a total re-orientation in the way think and do things. If ndi Igbo want to achieve that which they perceive they could acheieve, they have to do it collectively and with oneness. The entire south-easthern Nigeria is divided within itself. I call on all the governors in the region to come together and have an agenda on how to unite and reconcile the government and the people.

  • I find it very irritated when some POLITICIANS would want to hijack the funeral event of this hero for selfish popularity reasons. The Governor of Abia State should be hailed for his openness in organizing this event. He should commended for not engaging his party people rather he instituted an open house committee for this event. Its rather inhumane for some people to hire crowd at an event for Ojukwu to score political points. Its disrespectful to dead when we fail show respect. And I must say here that I was in Aba, saw things with my eyes. Only those hired by APGA politicians were chanting for their pay masters and Gov. T.A Orji had his people chanting for him simultaneously. It was a two way thing that should be discouraged. Ojukwu is for all Igbos, not an APGA, PDP & ACN affair. REMEMBER OJUKWU WAS AN APGA CHIEFTAIN AND APGA WOULD WANT A BIGGER SHARE DURING HIS BURIAL. SHOULD THIS BE ALLOWED? I am sure Aba people are decent and responsible people. They cannot disrespect their leaders nor the brave soul of our late super Hero. It will be unfair to say that decent Aba residents were unruly today. We only saw some APGA supporters hailing their leaders as we maybe aware the ovation was high today for the departed APGA and Igbo Hero Ojukwu. Proudly

  • Ebuka okoro

    No one disgraced occasion at the last tribute of dim ikemba of nnewi,which was observed at aba twonship stadium.this people posting fake news here should be mindful of themselves.how could this be true.we all were in aba and the corpse of dim ojukwu was welcomed in good hands with the governor and people of abia state who harmoniously commemorated the late chief odumegwu ojukwu as he his corpse was landed by a helicopter. for your information, who soever that is cooking up bogus information bout today’s event should stop it becos all he is doing malapropism of derogation and opprobrium which will never fetch him any attention.please good people,lets not be misled by propagandist entities , a lot of us were in aba where this eventful day was observed at enyimba stadium,so we know when truth is being told

  • Nulonnaya

    Instead of calling the attention of our governor to areas that needs development, we are here talking of Aba all the time. Is it only Aba that we have in Abia state? You think you can just go into Aba and turn it into paradise without waving a magic wand? Things don’t work like that. After all Gov. Orji Uzor Kalu ruled Abia for 8 years, at the end what happened? The governor don’t have to hire hoodlums to sing praises for him as he believe that his good works will speak for itself

  • nwaoma

    Mr Admin how can u cook up this kind of criticism and put it online ..as am talking i was in Aba yesterday and also among those that received ojukwu’s corpse it went successfully they never Disgraced Governor T A ORJI (OCHENDO) some of u dat is making comment here is not even in ABA for Ojukwu’s tribute…how can some start writing criticism about his fellow human being we should all remember that is turn by turn so you should better watch ur mouth.

  • James Clark

    Abains are full of ingrates. Can U imagine that somebody that took the mother’s breast can come out and point accusing finger to the Governor T. A. Orji for just no cause. Everybody was away that in the first term of T. O. orji was full of distractions, from one court to the other from one aspirant to the other. So how on earth did U expect him to perform.
    And if U guys can be frank to Urselves, assess his performance in this second term and U will find out he is not lagging behind at all. So many roads has been taken care of, and so many developmental works going on in the state, don’t want to start mentioning them. I came into the state and was impressed so far unlike his first term.
    The issue of Aba scene was the expectations of the masses, in as much as two parties were involved. Everybody should bear witness that the booing wasn’t for Abia state Governor, but the each party were busy exercising their right to the occasion.
    Kudos to the Executive Governor of Abia State for organising such a wonderful reception Ikemba, and to crown it all declared one day public holiday to express his magnanimity in political sphere.
    I want to equally thank Abians for coming out en mass to show their solidarity to our dear brother. Abians hail thee our dear governor.

  • Snitch

    Ojukwu to many of us is a super hero, I find it very irritated when some POLITICIANS would want to hijack the funeral event of this hero for selfish popularity reasons. The Governor of Abia State should be hailed for his openness in organizing this event. He should commended for not engaging his party people rather he instituted an open house committee for this event. Its rather inhumane for some people to hire crowd at an event for Ojukwu to score political points. Its disrespectful to dead when we fail show respect. And I must say here that I was in Aba, saw things with my eyes. Only those hired by APGA politicians were chanting for their pay masters and Gov. T.A Orji had his people chanting for him simultaneously. It was a two way thing that should be discouraged. Ojukwu is for all Igbos, not an APGA, PDP & ACN affair. REMEMBER OJUKWU WAS AN APGA CHIEFTAIN AND APGA WOULD WANT A BIGGER SHARE DURING HIS BURIAL. SHOULD THIS BE ALLOWED? I am sure Aba people are decent and responsible people. They cannot disrespect their leaders nor the brave soul of our late super Hero. It will be unfair to say that decent Aba residents were unruly today. We only saw some APGA supporters hailing their leaders as we maybe aware the ovation was high today for the departed APGA and Igbo Hero Ojukwu

  • Kwerejoe

    TA Orji is absolutely visionless. He is running a government of patronage, appointed multitudes of aides and fritting away the resources of Abians. If not for the depraved nature of governance in Nigeria, he needs to be impeached or resign peacefully. Orji has used him to punish us, Abians. Posterity will judge him.

  • cyrusocular

    well it is so unfortunate that people think that running the entire state affair is like running a family affair.i am not comfortable with the way people are reacting to the executive governor of this state.T.A has poured his heart to govern this state.he has been working tirelessly,but is quite ungrateful that some people are being paid for to malign and derogate the governor’s administration in order to launch dis order and disagreement in the highest order that will continue to bring doldrums to our state.No governor has ever over came all strife,no matter how hard he tried to please people.booing and disrespecting His Excellency T.a Orji is uncalled for.It is our duty to employ moral reasoning mustered in the face of faith to support our governor to lift our state,not to stand on the opposing side on everything he does for the betterment and glory of this state.Our governor has been doing greatly in recent times ,since he was re-elected and going back from all the good works he had done so far,i make bold to say he deserves to be respected and not the other way round. Wise-up Umu Abia

    • Soludo4

      quite unfortunate that somebody can talk this way about…TA defending him..Is people like this that made Abia the unfunctioning state it is in now! why support someone who is not doing anything? Go to Low cost housing and see gullies there! go to isi gate is in a mess! sack ur fellow ibos! He needs more than that! builds a private luxury property in school road when in power…He behaves like he was very poor that he could not afford 1 square meal! He is so dumb!

  • Whether you like it or not T.A. Orji is the governor of Abia state for now. He was massively voted for. We don’t have any other person. Which is why we have to support his government in order for it to perform well. I encourage all Abians to be steadfast in this fight towards taking the state to a greater height.

  • Wogulaw

    The idea of calling Governor T.A. names in the Aba event is uncalled for. He has squeezed out time and resources to organise such a grand reception to show his love even to the point of death. So why should somebody say that the Governor was booed? The uproar was 50/50 as APGA were trying to secure ground for themselves based on their party member, while PDP is the party on groung in Abia. Thank God I witnessed everything, and nobody pointed any accusing finger on our amiable governor just that the crowd was much, and U wouldn’t know who said what. Thank U Mr. Governor for Ur love to Ojukwu, even to the point of death. U are a kind man that Abians deserve. Ur developmental projects in the state has been receiving wide coverage. Keep it up.

  • Forreal

    Thank God for giving Abia Gov. T. A. Orji. Ojukwu’s soul must be rejoicing any he is now for the reception given to his remains by the people of Abia. It’s a mark noble-spiritedness.
    Aba people are known for their violence nature due to the environment they are into that has influenced them. Even if Jesus Christ is sent to Aba, they will still crucify him the second time without any fear or favour. That was the nature of Orji Uzor Kalu, a confirm Aba (OMATA) boy. Kudos to my governor.

  • Cenppalin

    The late Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu was a symbol of courage, selflessness, patriotism and true Igbo spirit of brotherhood. The people deprecated the participation of Gov. T. A. Orji in the burial activitiy because they considered his roles, particularly the sacking of his fellow Igbo’s from the state public service as hypocritical and at variance with the ideal Ojukwu stood for and represents. Aba is the only town in the South East where residents could do such a thing. Going by what is being said, they intend to do more and use all legitimate means to frustrate him out of office.

  • Cenppalin

    He in all honesty deserves it

  • Patrickobi

    I find it very irritated when some people would pop up contradictory information as regard to the befitting tribute of ikemba of nnewi hosted by the Governor of Abia State and how he was humiliated.in contrary to the bogus news being smeared all over the place by incongruous sect who are being empowered by dubious politicians, there was a graceful occasion of commemoration of ojukwu and
    Aba people have been hailing governor T.A Orji for his openness in organizing this event. He was also commended for not engaging his party people rather he instituted an open house committee for this event.Aba people proved that they are decent and responsible people. Aba and Abia people who gathered in mass did not disrespect their leader nor the brave soul of our late super Hero. Aba people showed off a proper patriotism for coming out in mass and supporting the governor on the state’s commemoration of our late great leader and brother,IKEMBA of nnewi