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Fr. Cloonan Memorial Sec. School Emekuku wins UNAA Maiden Quiz Competition

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Fr. Cloonan Memorial Sec. School Emekuku wins UNAA Maiden Quiz Competition

By John Agbakwuru

The maiden edition of a quiz competition for secondary schools in Owerri, organized by the University of Nigeria Nsukka Alumni Association (UNAA) has been won by Fr Cloonan Memorial Secondary School Emekuku.

The contest was organized in conjunction with Zander Fm Radio. The school beat nine other contestants to emerge first with 310 points, while the 2nd and 3rd positions went to Government Secondary School Owerri and New Laetare High School, Akwakuma which got 270 poimts and 265 points respectively.

The winning students

The schools in addition to the certificates presented to them, by the organizers also received N100,000, N60,000 and N40,000 cash rewards respectively.

The formal presentation of these prizes which took place Sunday, December 13, 2020. at the Engr. Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu Glass House Ugwu Orji Owerri, was the high point of the 2020 end-of-the year party of UNAA.

Rev Fr Emmanuel Diala, Principal of the winning school, his staff, as well as their counterparts from the runner-up schools were present. Dignitaries who graced the occasion included, members and executives of the Alumni Association. Engr Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, an alumnus and Grand Patron of UNAA was there in person.

Engr. Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu and other dignitaries as Fr. Diala says the opening prayer

Sir Engr. Chinedu Ajoku, Owerri Branch President in his speech, praised the Fr. Cloonan Memorial Secondary School Emekuku for excelling in the contest and also commended other participating schools for their efforts. He stated that the Association intends to take the quiz competition to a higher level next year. The president disclosed plans by the UNAA to widen its activities by starting a heath programme in order to touch the lives of more people.

In his word of appreciation after his school had received the first prize and cash, Rev Fr Emmanuel Diala, thanked the organizers of the competition for giving his students the opportunity to showcase their talents.

The principal, whose boys also won the football trophy competition organized for mission schools in the Owerri Archdiocese in 2019, in addition to so many other contests in the past, described Fr Cloonan Memorial School as a ‘Silent Achiever.’

According to him, invitation to his school to feature in the UNAA quiz competition came almost too late but he charged his students to make sure they win the first position, which they did.

In his speech, the Ahaejiagamba of Igboland, Engr Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, Grand Patron of UNAA thanked God for the good leadership of the Owerri Branch of the Association led by Engr Chinedu Ajoku and the wise programs they are executing.

The Grand patron assured members that he will give the association the necessary support it needs to actualize its proposed health projects slated to commence in 2021, through his Iwuanyanwu Ambalance and Foundation.

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JDPC empowers pioneer students

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JDPC empowers pioneer students

The Skills Acquisition Institute of the Justice, Development, Peace and Caritas Commission (JDPC), Owerri Archdiocese graduated and empowered her pioneer students who completed their one year skill acquisition training on modern Fashion Designing on “Pro-bono” basis, ie free of charge.

The event which took place at Obiri Odenigbo Pavillion, Maria Assumpta Cathedral Owerri was graced by dignitaries including; Hon. Noble A. Atulegwu (Commissioner for Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship, Imo State), Hon. Chidiebere Onyebuchi (SSA on Skill Acquisition to the Governor of Imo State), Dr Kachiside Dike of Catholic Relief Services, Barr. Eddy Onyema, Dr. Mrs UkaUkachi (Human Rights Commission), Rev. Sr Stella Ewa (ISMV), and host of others. The memorable event had Dr. Kachi Nwoga as its chairman.

the JDPC Director, Rev. Fr. Dr. Gerald Njoku, traced the origin of the JDPC skill acquisition institute, as well as appreciating the collaborative gesture of his German friends.

He highlighted the need to help young people to acquire knowledge in different skills and be independent as the reason for this initiative. He said that Archbishop Anthony J.V Obinna gave his blessings and with the financial support of his German friends, the training was established in the year 2018. He congratulated the graduands and encouraged them to always strive to ascend higher no matter the challenges.

JDPC Owerri – Presentation of empowerment items

The Imo State Commissioner for Entrepreneurship and Skill Acquisition in his speech tasked the beneficiaries to utilize the work equipment given to them after their training. Hon. Sir Noble Atulegwu commended the church for making such investment in their youths and stated that the church is an important stakeholder in assisting the present Imo state government to discourage idleness among youths in the state. He further opted for a symbiotic relationship and synergy between the government and the church to ensure that the dividends of democracy gets to the grassroots.

He stated that one of the challenges the youth are facing is “Lack of zeal to function” which makes them very unserious with their work and therefore used the Igbo phrase “Ngangabuteuzo, odidaesoteya”. He challenged the graduands to aim at reaching the highest level in life with their profession stating that “Onye aka oru, aguuanaghiegbuya”.

The Chairman of the occasion, Dr. Kachi Nwoga in his remarks stressed that Skill is the answer to employment which creates room for jobs while education gives us the right sense of value and right management of self. He thanked the Archbishop, Most. Rev. Anthony J.V Obinna and Rev. Fr. Dr. Gerald Njoku for moving people from being dependent to independent.

Before the commencement of the exhibition, the Manager of the Skill Acquisition Institute, Mr. Kingsley Ohaeri thanked God for his sustainability and grace to actualize the dream of Rev. Fr. Dr. Gerald Njoku at a record time. He further advised the graduands to always know that there is dignity in labour and prayed God to bless their newly acquired skills.

He used the medium to present to the JDPC board members and the audience the graduands in the persons of: Jacqueline C. Uche, Chinonso Owuamanam, Chigozie Obi, Nkechinyere Opara, Ann Nwaosu, Emmanuella Ikedinko, Loveth Ogbonna and Lillian Ohamara.

There were exhibitions of the graduand’s sewed clothings of different designs. A certificate of participation was given to each of the graduands with a complete set of sewing machine and a purse of twenty-five thousand naira each.

The parents of the graduands thanked the management of JDPC for a work well done and prayed for God’s continuous blessings upon them.

Miss Ikedinko Emmanuella (Class leader) on behalf of the graduands thanked the JDPC management for their numerous care and support throughout their training periods, especially the tea breaks and transport allowance which was a very big motivation to all of them.

A group photograph was taken and the Catholic Youth Organization of Nigeria(CYON) presented a cultural dance.

Representing the Catholic Archbishop of Owerri at the occasion, Rev. Fr. Njoku extolled Gov. Hope Uzodinmma for creating the novel ministry of Entrepreneurship and Skill Acquisition to empower Imo Youths. He equally commended the Hon. Commissioner piloting the affairs of the ministry for his vibrant and laudable efforts. He prayed God to strengthen them to sustain the good work.

A closing remark was made by Rev. Fr. Dr. Gerald Njoku in which he advised the new students to emulate the good behaviours of the graduands and thanked all and sundry especially His Grace, Most. Rev. Anthony J. V Obinna and his Auxillary, Most. Rev. Moses Chikwe for their unalloyed support and prayers.

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Chief/Sir Eugene and Nneoma Lady Anthonia Osuagwu turns gold in marriage

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Chief/Sir Eugene and Nneoma Lady Anthonia Osuagwu turns gold in marriage

…Gives thanks to God for blessings

It was to the glory of God that Chief Sir E.A. and Nneoma Lady Anthonia Osuagwu (KSM/LSM) celebrated the Golden Jubilee Anniversary of their Holy Matrimony with a thanksgiving Mass celebrated by Rev. Fr. Joseph Duru at St. Joseph Parish Umualumaku Ehime Mbano LGA, Sunday April 4. Fr. Duru, Parish Priest, was joined at Mass by Very Rev. Fr. Dr. Emmanuel Osuji, Rev. Fr. Modestus Ikwugbu and Rev. Fr. Kingsley Eze.

In his homily, Fr. Duru gave thanks to God for the gift of the couple to the parish, community, Ehime Deanery and Okigwe Diocese and humanity. According to him, Christians and the parishioners in particular should always be hopeful and believe that the risen Christ has taken away all our sorrows, tribulations and above all, brought salvation of our souls in its wake.

The homilist encouraged the congregation to always be mindful that it was the resurrection of Christ from the dead that brought salvation to humanity. “The risen Christ is ever ready to take away our iniquities if only we believe and stop doubting like Thomas.”

Fr. Duru admonished young couples that marriage is not a bed of roses. According to him, the celebrants were happily celebrating the golden jubilee anniversary of their marriage with friends, associates and family members, they also suffered deprivations, anger, bitterness, ill-health and challenging moments but overcame because of the efficacy of prayers, dedication, love and mutual trust.

He advised the golden jubilarians to continue to be submissive and love each other. He encouraged their children to continue lending a hand of support, care and provide goodwill to their parents more, now they are no more in service. The couple exchanged rings and renewed their marital vows. He then prayed God to continue to keep them together in love and good health so that they remain role models and source of encouragement to young and prospective couples.

The matrimony between Nneoma Lady Anthonia Ewenkechi (LSM) nee Ihechinyere of Umuebo, Umuezeala Owerri and Hon. Chief Sir Eugene Akunaka Osuagwu (KSM, PEN) was validated on January 4, 1970 and the marriage is blessed with five children, three boys and two girls, numerous grandchildren, in-laws and other relatives.

Through dint of hardwork, diligence, doggedness and perseverance, the couple rose to the pinnacle of their careers as Principals of Secondary Schools graduating from teaching cadre. As Knight and Lady of St. Mulumba, they rose to the 4th Degrees. As community leaders, they became chiefs of cabinet ranks and as proactive Catholics, Lady Anthonia Osuagwu was conferred with the prestigious Nneoma title by His Lordship, Most Rev. Solomon Amatu, Bishop of Okigwe Diocese.

The Leader spoke with Chief Sir E.A. Osuagwu (KSM PEN) moments after the celebration at his Umunjoku Umunonyia abode on how it has been all these years. According to him, it is not an easy roller coaster without hitches, obstacles and challenges. Life is a creative synthesis of opposites in fruitful harmony. Life over 50 years is brutish, never easy but tough like battle; but with prayer and faith, he counted himself as one of those blessed by God. “If I have the same opportunity, I will also marry my heartthrob, Nneoma Anthonia.” He expressed profound gratitude to God for his multiple blessings and increase in the family long life and resources. He prayed God who started the good works to continue. He gave all glory to God.

The thanksgiving wedding anniversary took an upscale with the cutting of cake by the couple, taking a dramatic note as the golden jubilarians took to the dancing floor displaying rich dancing prowess and skills to the admiration of friends, well wishers, family members and Knights and Ladies of both St. Mulumba and St. John International.

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Blessed Tansi Avenue Ugwu Orji unveiled

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Blessed Tansi Avenue Ugwu Orji unveiled

The parish priest of Blessed Iwene Tansi Parish Ugwu Orji, Owerri Archdiocese, Rev. Fr. Dr. Alex Okoro, has unveiled a signpost officially naming the road in front of the parish, “Blessed Tansi Avenue”.

The unveiling which took place on Tuesday, April 6, 2021, was witnessed by parishioners, friends and some residents of the area.

The Avenue stretched from the Blessed Tansi Parish Junction, Ugwu-Orji (Mechanic Village) to Rapour Hotel Amakohia, which is about 3kms, was approved by Owerri North Local Government.

“I applied for the Road at the Owerri North LGA and after fulfilling all necessary requirements I got approval and certificate.

Speaking during the event, Fr Okoro revealed that the parish church is the first building that was erected along the Avenue and the church is a landmark in Ugwu-Orji.

Fr Okoro stated that by the grace of God, the road will help to promote the canonization of Blessed Iwene Tansi when people start talking about Blessed Tansi Avenue, Owerri.

He advised other priests to follow due process in naming major roads leading to their parishes after the name of their parish Church especially if the church is a landmark in the area.

He said, “Naming roads leading to churches after politicians doesn’t augur well. Let the church which is a landmark in the area lead in street naming”.

Among those who witnessed the unveiling of the signpost include: Rev. Fr Fabian Ikewuba, the Parish Council Chairman, Chief Isaac Uzoagwa, the Parish Catechist, Mr. Kelechi Amaku, the parish catechizer, Mr. Tony Ezulike etc.

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