An Igbo Apex socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide has felicitated the former Minister of Foreign Affairs; former Secretary-General of Commonwealth and Nigerian Permanent Representative in the United Nations, Emeka Anyaoku on his 91st birthday anniversary.
Pix- Emeka Anyaoku
Statement signed and made available to Newsmen by the National Publicity Secretary, Dr Alex Ogbonna, on Thursday in Enugu, said Anyaoku is a respected global icon, an extraordinary diplomat and a prudent negotiator.
He also described Anyaoku, a former member, Presidential Advisory Council of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide ,as an astute harmoniser of diverse cultural and political interests.
According to the statement, the Presidential-General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, said Anyaoku had remained a veritable source of inspiration to the younger generation.
He said he was highly delighted that the foremost Nigerian diplomat was hale and hearty at 91.
The statement read in parts:
“The Igbo leader recalled with freshness when Chief Emeka Anyaoku was elected as the third Commonwealth Secretary-General at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at Kuala Lumpur on Oct. 24, 1989.
“By the reason of that election, Anyaoku became the first black man ever to fully head a major international organisation.
“He served the body with an uncommon competence, adroitness, elegance and panache.
“Thus, Anyaoku was re-elected at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at Limasso, Cyprus in 1994 for a second five-year term, beginning on 1 April 1995,” Iwuanyanwu said.
The president-general noted that Anyaoku deployed his robust intellect, tact and capacity to relate with world leaders while he was at the Common Wealth without compromising his Igbo cultural identity and enviable virtues.
“It was with such a diplomatic prowess that Anyaoku deployed in overturning the obnoxious apartheid regime and the inauguration of Nelson Mandela’s government of racial equality in South Africa.
“Also, during the dark days of Nigeria, Anyaoku identified fully with rights activists for the restoration of democracy to Nigeria in 1999,” he said.
” Ge enjoined all sons and daughters of Igbo land and the the black race to celebrate ” in honour of an exceptional living legend and a man with a track record of successes in the service of numerous international organisations”.
“He is a rare gem, who has been conferred with doctorate degrees, honoris causa, by over 33 universities in all parts of the world; and a bridge builder ,who is very conscious and proud of his Igbo heritage.
“It is the prayer of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide that the Igbo titan will witness many more”,he said.
Author: Maureen Ikpeama