Raymond Ozoji, Awka
Umujagbo village Okpuno Awka, country home of Chief Dr. Amobi Daniel Nwokafor in Awka-south local government area of Anambra state was a beehive of cultural activities at the weekend, as the renowned chartered accountant and strategic management expert was initiated into the Ozo society of Awka kingdom. It was indeed a historical event as the age-long dream of the former President-General of Awka Development Union came to fruition.
Nwokafor’s compound played host to Ozo title holders who came in their numbers adorning their regalia and with their staff to witness the conferment of Ozo Awka title on Chief Dr. Amobi Daniel Nwokafor.
Although there are about five traditional titles in Awka town viz Amanwulu, Chi, Ayajioku, Ajaghija and Ozo respectively. But the Ozo traditional title is the most revered because of the rigorous processes of screening and cleansing to ascertain the personality of the individual goning for the Ozo title, after which the initiation ceremony is performed in the home of the celebrant.
Ozo Awka was the title the traditional institution of Awka ancient kingdom bestowed on former President-General of the town union whom they all attested to the fact that he pioneered some of the infrastructural development in the area.
Some of the elder Ozo title holders who spoke about Chief Dr. Amobi Daniel Nwokafor said he is a man of impeccable character and selfless in service to humanity. They said his tenure as the PG of Awka Development Union brought a lot of monumental transformations to Awka town and that the Ozo Awka title conferred on him was well-deserved.
Chief Dozie Nweke-Nwezeobuna, Ozo Agudeuzulu of Umuayom village Awka said that the celebrant was the architect of the monumental progress in Awka town when he was the President-General of the town union.
Ozo Agudeuzulu said that Chief Amobi did only one term as President-General but handed over to his successor onlike most persons who would maintain sit-tight syndrome and would refuse to relinquish power over selfish and primordial interests.
On the other hand, Ozo Chief Jeff Ezechukwu Nweke, Ozo Zuluezu of Amikwo village Awka said the Ozo Awka society is an assembly of good people in Awka kingdom and that Chief Dr. Amobi Daniel Nwokafor has also joined the fold by virtue of his initiation into the Ozo Awka society.
Ozo Zuluezu however described Chief Nwokafor as a very good man and by the conferment of Ozo Awka title on him, he has been given the mandate of the people to continue speaking the truth at all times, exposing evil and not taking sides.
Also Ozo Emma Anene of Umuogwali village Awka, Ozo Ona corroborated what others said about Ozo Chief Amobi Daniel Nwokafor, that he merited the traditional title as an Awka man. Secondly, he said that the celebrant is a good man who used his personal resources to run his office as President-General of Awka Development Union.
For Ozo Chief Michael Nwankwo Chinekwu of Umuogbunu village Awka, Ozo Obiara Igbum Gbuo One Ya, said that Ozo title is not for money-bags. That the process of Ozo title-taking begins from a formal application subject to thorough scrutiny and screening of the applicant to ensure that the applicant has no questionable character and not an ex-convict before his application would be approved.
Ozo Chinekwu noted that apart from being the PG of Awka town, Ozo Chief Amobi Daniel Nwokafor has given out scholarships to indigent children to continue their education and equally has widows in his payroll to enable them to fend for their families.
He however admonished him to keep the rules and regulations of Ozo, stressing that any Ozo title holder no longer tells lies nor supports evil in whatever guise or form.
For Ozo Chief Amobi Daniel Nwokafor, whose marriage to Chief Mrs. Nkem Helen Nwokafor has produced lovely children, Ozo title-taking was the best thing that has happened to him.
Chief Nwokafor said it has always been his ambition to become a member of the Ozo society of Awka kingdom. He said his people all agreed to name him Ozo Awka, which to him, was a great and unprecedented honour.
He said he was the immediate past President-General of Awka Development Union and that as the PG, it was his duty to chart the cause of development in the area and that his people really appreciate the little contributions he made in the growth and development of Awka kingdom.
Chief Nwokafor said he would henceforth dedicate the rest of his life to service, stressing that the Ozo Awka title conferred on him was an eloquent testimony that his people appreciate and acknowledge his little contributions to the growth of Awka kingdom and Anambra state at large.