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St. Mark’s Parish, New Owerri celebrates Feast of Patron



The 2013 feast of St. Mark the Evangelist has been celebrated by St. Mark’s Catholic Church, Federal Housing Estate, New Owerri, Imo State on Sunday, April 28.


The celebration started with a Holy Mass presided over by the Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Dr. Mark Njoku, assisted by his Curate, Fr. Paschal Onyeneke, the Priest-in-Residence, Rev. Msgr. Marcel U. Ibe, the Chaplain of Holy Rosary Hospital and past Curate of St. Mark’s Parish, Fr. Chinedu Egejuru and Rev. Fr. Dr. Joe Enyiaka.


Delivering a homily during the Mass, Dr. Joe Enyiaka pointed out that God, who in the Old Testament seemed far away from humanity and who the prophets went to appeal to on behalf of their people, has now made himself accessible to everyone and that one needs not run from post to pole seeking him, as he is now dwelling among his people – the Church.


The priest pointed that suffering and sickness are part of human nature, and that God did not promise that there would not be suffering and sickness but that there would be healing and deliverance among his people who believe in him.


Fr. Enyiaka, who is the Rector of St. Peter Claver Seminary, Okpala, however called on Christians to contribute to build a dwelling place for God who promised to lavish his blessings on those that build his church.  He cautioned Christians to stop giving God left-over gifts or unwholesome gifts as according to him, God had advised that they should try to give such gifts to their kings and see if they will accept them from their hands, not to talk of giving such to the King of Glory.


The homilist noted that St. Mark also donated generously to the church as evidenced in his family giving their house for the use of the early church.


Highlights of the occasion included the launching made for the tiling of the new church house and award of excellence given to friends of St. Mark’s Catholic Church who have distinguished themselves in their various fields of endeavour as well as programme of send-off to the former Assistant Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Chinedu Egejuru.


In his opening remarks during the ceremony, the Chairman of the occasion, Mr. Marcel Eshiogu, pointed out that the opportunity given to one to contribute to build for God should be seen by one as a privilege and honour as God do not allow everyone to build for him as can be seen in the case of King David.


In her own remark at the occasion, the Chairman of the Feast Organizing Committee, Chief (Mrs.) Lauretta Madu encouraged Christian to give for the building of the church of God as, this is a way of praising God.


Congratulating the awardees, Mrs. Madu said they were hand-picked by God for such award.

The awardees are: Her Excellency, Nneoma Nkechi Rochas Okorocha, the wife of Imo State Governor, represented at the occasion by Mrs. Kate Ozoemena, wife of the Deputy Speaker, Imo State House of Assembly, Her Excellency, Dr. (Mrs.) Theresa Agbonma Udenwa (former First Lady, Imo State and Dr. Jude Akubuilo, Honourable Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Enugu State, who was also the guest of honour at the occasion.


Others are: Hon. Bar. Obiageli Eudora Igwe (Okwesilieze), member representing Ideato North Constituency in Imo State House of Assembly, Dr. (Mrs.) Uche Ejiogu, Chairman, Imo State Universal Basic Education, Maxwell Chika Ogazi, Director, Christian Compassionate Orphanage Home, Obosi and Ngor Okpala and Dr. Ken Obichere, the Medical Director of Kent Group of Clinics and the present Imo State Scout Commissioner.


The occasion was attended by the cream of the parish including the Chairman of the Parish Council, Engr. Emeka Nwachukwu.


Earlier in his remarks during a cocktail party preceding the feast, the Parish Priest, Fr. Mark Njoku called on parents to revive Igbo culture and folklore, regretting that many Igbo children and even adults don’t know Akuko Ifo, Ilu Igbo and Gwam gwam gwam.


The Parish CWO led by the President, Bar. Mrs. Ngozi Iwu presented a cultural dance.

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USAID begins Covid-19 testing in Imo rural areas



USAID averts 25,000 unwanted pregnancies in Ebonyi, Kogi

…Umuagwo Varsity of Agric kicks-off October

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has begun Covid-19 testing in the 27 Local Government Areas of Imo State, “in a bid to reduce the impact of community spread of the virus in the rural areas of the state.

The Imo State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Chief Declan Mbadiwe Emelumba disclosed this in Owerri while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the Weekly Executive Council meeting presided over by Governor Hope Uzodimma on Wednesday.

Chief Emelumba said so far, the USAID officials have carried out reasonable number of testing in Njaba LGA and reported that all those tested came out negative and that the council prayed that the result from other Local Government Areas will be the same.

He announced that the Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC) has approved the take off of the Imo State University for Agriculture and Environmental Sciences Umuagwo in October this year.

According to him, the approval underscores the efforts which the Imo State Government ably led by Governor Hope Uzodinma has made towards the establishment of a second university for the state.

Recently, the NUC panel was in Imo State to carry out the necessary verification exercises on the state facilities, human and physical infrastructures.

Mr. Declan Emelumba, who was flanked by the Commissioner for Education, Prof. Bernard Ikegwuoha, Commissioner for Health Dr. Damaris Osunkwo and the Chief Press Secretary/Media Adviser to the Governor Mr. Oguwike Nwachuku, informed that the Executive Council is happy that something new is happening in the Education Sector of the State.

Emelumba said that the Imo State University of Science and Environmental Sciences, Umuagwo will take off by October when other universities would be resuming for a new academic session.

In the same vein, the Council has approved the immediate relocation of Faculty of Engineering Imo State University Owerri to its permanent site at Okigwe, stressing that Government has put all processes and facilities on ground to ensure the immediate take–off of the faculty.

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Imo Governor’s aide visits Oziza FM Staff, Ogechi Iwu in hospital



Imo Governor’s aide visits Oziza FM  Staff, Ogechi Iwu in hospital

The Chief Press Secretary and Media Adviser to Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo State, Mr. Oguwike Nwachuku has visited Mr. Ogechi Iwu, a journalist with Osiza FM.

The media man is hospitalized at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owerri over complications from diabetes that led to his right leg being amputated.

Mr. Nwachuku said the visit was to show solidarity on behalf of Governor Uzodimma to his professional colleague, assuring him of their prayers, particularly that of his principal, and the prayers of Mr. Iwu’s numerous friends and well wishers who are touched by his plight.

“I am here on behalf of my principal to associate with him in this time of health challenge and to encourage him not to see the sickness as a death sentence.”

Oge Iwu at fmc

L-R: Chief Akaraonye, Mr. Oguwike Nwachuku with Ogechi Iwu during the visit

Mr. Nwachuku urged Mr. Iwu to continue in the high spirit he saw him and trust God for his total recovery “because healing is a thing of mind and when a sick person is in high spirit the patient gets recovered quickly.”

The spokesman of the Governor promised to bring the plight of the journalist to the attention of his principal, and assured that the Governor will, in his usual manner of one with milk of human sympathy, show concern over Iwu’s plight.

Earlier, Mr. Iwu thanked the CPS/Media Adviser, the State Chairman of NUJ, Imo State, Chief Christopher Akaraonye and other journalists who were on the entourage, for coming to identify with him on his sick bed, and assured that God in his infinite mercy will quicken his recovery.

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Bishop Ugorji heads IMSU Governing Council



Bishop Ugorji heads IMSU Governing Council

Imo State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodimma has inaugurated a new Governing Council, for the Imo State University, IMSU, Owerri.

At the inauguration ceremony on Monday, August 31, the governor named Most Rev. Lucius Ugorji as the Chairman of the Governing Council and Pro-Chancellor of the University.

Other members of the Council include: Chief Leo Stan Ekeh, Chief Tony Ezenna, Prof. (Ven.) Chinedu Nebo, Sir. Louis Ezeigwe, Chief Engr. Ernest Nwapa, Dr. (Mrs.) Uwandu Uzoma, Ugoeze Victoria Adaku Ekezie, Prof. Adaobi Obasi (Vice Chancellor) and others.

Speaking at the inauguration, Governor Uzodimma said the choice of the members is to infuse fresh air into the university because “It is in dire need to bounce back to reckoning.”
He added that the choice of the members was because they have carved a niche for themselves in their chosen fields of endeavour and that they have earned solid reputation as men and women of substance in their individual trade, indices that qualified them for the appointment.

He challenged the members to bring their reputation to bear on the University, bearing in mind the task for good quality scholarship in Imo State University as well as service to humanity.

The Governor urged the members to deploy their individual accomplishments, excellence, expertise, passion for service as effectively as necessary to actualize the dream of his administration of having a highly reputable University comparable to the best Universities in the World.

He also requested the Council to “restore in words and deeds the motto of Imo State University, which is Excellence in Service”.

“Imo State University currently is a classical example of a failed University,” Governor Uzodimma said but strongly believed that “with a star studded Governing Council such as the one inaugurated there is no doubt that Imo is on the track to realize the dreams of her founding fathers.”

He further enjoined the Council members to quickly hit the ground running and come up with policies and programmes that will reassure Imo people that the University that made them proud 20 years back is on track as he assured them of Government partnership in this regard.

In an acceptance speech, on behalf of the Council, the Chairman, Most Rev. Ugorji who is the Catholic Bishop of Umuahia thanked the Governor for the absolute confidence reposed in them by giving them the assignment and acknowledged that though the task is daunting he has a strong belief that with the calibre of members of the Council and support of the management, staff and students the University will be returned to a centre of excellence which was the dream of the founding fathers.

He said that Imo State University deserves the best and that he and his members as inaugurated will work acidulously to ensure that the target of the governor in making Imo State University one of the best universities in Africa is realised.

He congratulated fellow members and promised that God’s willing, they will not fail the government and people of Imo State.

Present at the inauguration were the Deputy Governor, Prof. Placid Njoku, the Speaker Imo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Chiji Collins, the Secretary to the State Government, Chief Cosmas Iwu, and other members of the expanded State Executive Council.

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