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George Obiozor: Celebrating a colossus @80

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By Dr Chiedozie Alex Ogbonnia

The Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide joins the entire Igbo both at home and in the Diaspora in celebrating an accomplished erudite reflective scholar, renowned author, seasoned diplomat, resourceful administrator, cultural leviathan, political submarine, pathfinder and an Igbo Titan of incredible global reckoning, His Excellency, Ambassador (Prof.) George Obiozor (Ugwumba), the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide as he clocks 80 on 15 August.

It is a common knowledge that the birth of every child is an epiphany of hope wrapped in a canvass of diverse possibilities. As hard as parents may strive for an upward social mobility of the child, it takes the spark of God to twang the transcendental cord that excites the critical elements in the child for self-awakening.

Thus while his peers at a very early age floundered, Obiozor pursued his life vision with incandescent passion, prudence, diligence and honour. Armed with a PhD in International Affairs from the Columbia University, United States, Obiozor taught in several foreign universities and attained the enviable rank of a Professor. He also served Nigeria in several capacities with neither tarnish nor blemish. Some of the positions he held in Nigeria include the Director-General of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs; High Commissioner to Cyprus; Nigerian Ambassador to the State of Israel; and Nigerian Ambassador to the United States.

As the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Obiozor has displayed an uncommon intellect, irrepressible courage, candor, tolerance, large heart and equanimity; a man who has sacrificed his personal comfort in the service of Igbo nation. What stands Obiozor out among his peers is his unique intellectual wizardry, profound sense of humour, extraordinary creative imagination, rationality, clear-headedness, unwavering determination with which he pursues his views, even in most hostile or complex circumstances.

For over five decades, Obiozor has shown an unassailable commitment to Igbo cause. His eloquent speeches and relentless advocacy for a Nigerian president of the South East extraction has assumed an irreversible, unquenchable and irresistible national charm, resonance and unprecedented crescendo. It is worthy of note that when the chronicle of Igbo personages will be launched, some leaders will appear in footnotes while some chapters will be devoted to Ambassador Professor George Obiozor.

Ugwumba, please note that Ndigbo all over the world are very proud of you. They are glad that their father-figure has attained the highly coveted eight floor in sound mind; hale, hearty and as fit as a fiddle. It is our prayer that the Almighty God will grant you many more years in robust health to fully harvest the fruit of your selfless service to humanity.

Ogbonnia is the National Publicity Secretary, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide

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