Onu’s Integrity Incomparable – Okorie

Onu's Integrity Incomparable – Okorie

Onu's Integrity Incomparable – Okorie

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The founding national chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) Chief Chekwas Okorie has described the first civilian governor of Abia State and former minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, who died on Thursday, April 11, 2024 as a man with incomparable integrity, sincerity and honesty.

In a personally signed statement titled, “Tribute: I Am Unable To Say Goodbye To Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu”, Okorie who reflected on his 41 year old with Onu, said “I wish to state that he was a quintessential gentleman, whose word was his bond.”

The former APGA chairman said any understanding reached with Onu was bankable, adding that there was no difference between written and unwritten agreement as far as the late former governor was concerned.

“Dr. Onu's integrity, sincerity and honesty were incomparable. His humility was disarming. Betrayal and inordinate ambition were vices that were alien to Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu's persona.”

 

Okorie, who also holds the title of Ojeozi Ndigbo, said he met Onu, “a brilliant, self-effacing, and consummate academic”, 41 years ago “when he was a member of the Board of Directors of Nigercem Nkalagu, now in Ebonyi State.”

 

Okorie said he was deeply pained that he had to write a final farewell to his bosom friend at this time when there is so much more he still had to offer to a country he loved so much.

 

He acknowledged Onu's academic brilliance, who was widely acclaimed as a first class of Chemical Engineering from University of who went into politics and maintained unquestionable integrity.

 

The statement reads, “The academic brilliance of Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu manifested very early when he obtained Grade One with Distinction in his West African Certificate Examination at Izzi High School, Izzi, Ebonyi State.

 

“He went further to obtain distinctions in Physics and Chemistry at the Higher School Certificate Examination at the College of Immaculate Conception (CIC), graduating as the best overall .

 

“In 1976, Dr. Onu graduated with a First Class Honors Degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Lagos (Unilag). He later obtained his Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Chemical Engineering (without passing through a Masters degree program) at the prestigious University of California, Berkeley, California, USA, in 1980.

 

“On returning to Nigeria, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu taught at the University of as the pioneer Head of the Department of Chemical Engineering. On several occasions, he served as the acting Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, .

 

“Dr. Onu was also elected as a member of the Governing Council of the University. Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu did not limit himself to acquiring high-grade certificates in academic institutions. He had time for extra-curricular activities where he excelled.

 

“His capabilities as a leader of his peers and others shone like a thousand stars. A few examples will suffice. While in the University of California, Berkeley, Dr. Onu was president of the Association of Northern California incorporated (Inc.). Back in Nigeria, Dr. Onu served as the President General of the Old Boys Association of his Alma Mater, Izzi High School, Izzi, Ebonyi State.

 

“While in Port Harcourt, Dr. Onu became the President of the Rotary of Port Harcourt. He was also the Chairman of the Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers of old Rivers, Cross River and Akwa Ibom States' Chapter.

 

“Dr. Onu was a pioneer National President of Raw Materials Society of Nigeria, which metamorphosed into the Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC) and Dr. Onu served as a member of the first Board of Governors of the Council.

 

“Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu was the author of many books and garnered so many awards and Chieftaincy titles. Dr. Onu was an exemplary family man,” he said.

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