Revive pre-colonial activism, ex-Enugu governor charges Igbo women

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Former Governor of Enugu State, Sen. Chimaroke Nnamani has charged Igbo women to revive the socio-political and economic activism employed during the pre-colonial era in moving the region and nation forward.

The former governor made the call in Enugu on Sunday in a keynote lecture entitled, “Amazons as Leaders,” to mark the second reunion of the alumni class of ‘76 of the Anglican Girls Grammar School, AGGS, Awkunanaw, Enugu.

The senator representing Enugu East Senatorial Zone, urged women to emulate prominent Igbo women of old who excelled in politics and in businesses.

He said that Ndigbo were known for being enterprising both in business and politics and as such it should be maintained by all and sundry as a mark of identity.

The former governor, in encouraging the Igbo women to be aggressive in their pursuit of any endeavour, cited prominent Igbo women that had made Ndigbo proud.

Such women include late Margaret Ekpo who made a mark in politics that an airport in Calabar was named after her.

Others were a woman simply known as Nwanyeruwa who led the 1929 Aba Market Women Riot that stopped the imposition of tax on women and the abrogation of Warrant Chiefs because of their autocratic tendencies.

Another great woman was Ahebi Ugbabe who fled Enugu Ezike in Nsukka to escape marriage to a deity.

She later became influential due to her bravery that she was made a warrant chief in the colonial era which was the preserve of men.

Other notable Igbo women were Nkpolo Nwagwudu-Elele; Flora Nwapa, a renowned author and Oyibo Odinamadu among others.

Nnamani, therefore, charged the old girls to use their good positions in society to better the lot of their alma mater, the Anglican Girls Grammar School, Awkunanaw which was suffering infrastructural decay at the moment.

He pointed out that if the amazons had kept quiet and allowed things to rot, they would not have made a mark and their societies would have groaned in agony and dejection.

The senator urged them to add value to their former school and the society.

President of the Class of 76, Mrs Bridget Oduah-Ebonwu said, in her address, that they decided to come together after 43 years they left the school to give back to the school that nurtured them into adulthood.

“We agreed to contribute our quota towards lifting our alma mater.  We are working towards achieving this purpose.

“We visited the school earlier in the day to see things for ourselves and we all agreed that there is a lot we can do to make a difference,” she said. (NAN)

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