A former Minister of Aviation, Osita Chidoka, has described the passing of his mother as a loss irreplaceable.
The ex-minister made the remark while mourning the Chidoka matriach, late Deaconess Nneka Chidoka (Nee Nzelu), who died at the age of 75 years.
Speaking at her funeral, the former minister recalled how she suffered cancer – a terminal disease, for 15 years.
According to him, if she wasn’t diagnosed early, the disease would have killed her much earlier, under a five-year-period of scourge.
Chidoka explained that following the death of the family’s matriach, he had to organise free medical services in his community as a means of honouring their mother’s legacy.
While emphasising the importance of early detection and management of any disease, he added, “Our family had a partnership with various medical organisations and we shared the medical outreach in Ozubulu and Obosi. We screened over 200 women for various ailments. No woman should die of cancer again as our mother did.
“Something that can be detected early is something that can be treated early. We decided that this burial ceremony is not just a time for people to come and eat and celebrate with us but for us to reach out to the society,” he stressed.
The former aviation boss described his late mother as a strong woman who gave birth to five children – four boys and a girl.
“We will commit whatever that is realised from the burial to the treatment of cancer scourge to support those suffering from the scourge,” he noted further.
Chidoka pointed out, “Our mother suffered it for 15 years and that early detection and treatment made her to stay this long, even when the medical experts predicted that would die within five years of detection.
“She has suffered from cancer scourge for the past 15 years. The reason why she stayed long was because of early detection and treatment. We decided to bring it to the open because it is an opportunity to talk about early detection, treatment and preventive method,” he maintained.
At the burial ceremony for the Chidoka matriarch, the Anambra State Governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, commiserated with Chidoka, and the family over the death of their mother.
In his condolence message, Soludo, reiterated that their mother’s death was a loss for all Anambra people, but enjoined the family to rejoice because her death was a glorious one.
Addressing the youths of Obosi, the governor said he had yet to see anyone who lived a life of violence and criminality live up to the age of 75, and therefore concluded that crime has no place with longevity of life.
“Ndi Anambra should be inspired by the Chidokas and their principled way of life,” he insisted.
The funeral service was held at the St. Andrews Anglican Church, Obosi, on Friday.
Soludo at the event conveyed his gratitude to the Anglican Communion, Diocese on the Niger, for producing a permanent order of service bulletin that complies with the state Funeral Law.
In his sermon, Most Rev. Ali Buba Lamido, comforted the deceased’s family, stating that Deaconess Victoria had served God The Almighty and the Church.
Lamido advised the bereaved family not to let her legacy die, and urged the congregation to make amends with God if they have yet to do so.
Also present at the burial ceremony were – Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former Governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi; Chief of Staff to Governor Soludo, Mr. Ernest Ezeajughi; Senator Pius Anyim, Senator Uche Ekwunife, Senator Tony Nwoye, Amb. Bianca Ojukwu, Bishop of the Niger, Most Rev. Owen Nwokolo, several clerics ftim other denominations, among others, attended the service.