Kalu, Uzodimma, Iwuanyanwu, others mourn as Nzeribe dies at 83

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Former Abia State governor and Chief Whip of the Senate, Orji Uzor Kalu, Governor Hope Uzodimma, Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu and others have mourned the demise of iconic politician and multi-billion naira investment mogul, Arthur Nzeribe. He would have been 84 years by November 2.Senator Arthur Nzeribe

Nzeribe represented Orlu senatorial zone between October 1983 and December 1983 in the Second Republic on the platform of the Nigeria People’s Party (NPP). At the return of the Third Republic, he also represented the people of Imo West between May 1999 and May 2007 on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

During a visit to his palatial country home known as ‘Haven of Peace’, located at Egbuoma community in Oguta Local Government Area, yesterday, only a security guard was seen at the vicinity.

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However, at his father’s compound in Umudei village in the same council, a man, Justinian Nzeribe, who identified himself as the only surviving child of eight Nzeribe siblings, confirmed the death of the icon. He said he received the sad news at about 6a.m.

Traditional ruler of Oguta, Nnani Chinedu Nzeribe, as well as a political associate of the late icon and former deputy governor of the state, Gerald Irona, said they would only speak after an official statement by family members.

Kalu, who acknowledged the patriotic contributions of the late Nzeribe to nation building through various platforms, stressed that the late politician was bold, courageous and selfless in fighting for the cause of the people.

He pointed out that the deceased was an accomplished business enigma, consummate politician and philanthropist of repute, who carved a niche for himself in various endeavours.

In a condolence message, Kalu joined family, friends and associates in mourning the passing of the elder statesman.

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“I commiserate with the government and people of Imo State over the demise of Second Republic politician, Nzeribe.

“I equally convey my sincere condolences to the Nzeribe family over the painful loss.

“The deceased was a man of many parts, who stood out among his contemporaries be it in business, politics and philanthropy.

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“His contributions to the social, economic and political development are enormous, remarkable and commendable.

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“The late senator uplifted many people in the society through his business empire, political dynasty and Arthur Nzeribe Foundation.

“He lived a purposeful life dedicated to the service of humanity.

“I urge the Nzeribe family to uphold the good deeds of their late patriarch.”

Reacting last night, Governor Uzodimma said the death of Nzeribe was a big loss to the people of state in particular and Nigeria in general.

A statement by Governor Uzodimma’s Chief Press Secretary and Media Adviser, Oguwike Nwachuku, said Nzeribe will forever be remembered as a political juggernaut in Nigeria.

He said his death has robbed Imo State and Nigeria of a seasoned politician and business icon, noting that Nzeribe died when his fatherly and statesmanly advice were badly needed.

He commiserated with the family members of Nzeribe, the people of Oguta, his political and business associates, friends and well wishers on his passing, urging them to pray for the deceased.

Governor Uzodimma, who also said Nzeribe’s death is a personal loss to his family, the government and people of Imo State, urged God to grant the soul of the deceased a peaceful repose.

Elder statesman, Chief Iwuanyanwu, said Nzeribe would not only be missed by his state, Imo, but Igbo and entire country, according to him it would be difficult to get a personality like Nzeribe again.

“He would be missed by all, not only his state, Ndigbo will miss him, he is a man with a lot of courage, his skills and doggedness is exceptional, I want to thank the wife who has been taken care of him since his sickness began, it is not easy, she is a good woman and may God give her and the family strength to bear his loss,” Iwuanyanwu said. 

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