COMMUNIQUE ISSUED BY NGWA NATIONAL ASSOCAITION, USA (NNAUSA) AT THE CONCLUSION OF HER 2017 ANNUAL NATIONAL CONVENTION HELD AT HILTON NORTH, 3415 WAKE FOREST ROAD, RALEIGH, NC 927609. DATE: 1ST September THROUGH 4TH September 2017
With more than 900 participants at the grand opening ceremony of the 26th annual convention, the 29 years old leading socio-cultural organization of immigrants from the East of the Niger, the pride of every Ngwa person both in diaspora and at home concluded with huge success. NNAUSA is clearly a pilot, the hallmark and envy of every other mono-ethnic nonprofit organization among Nigerians in diaspora. With much enthusiasm, the Ngwa National Association USA, Inc also known as (NNAUSA) held its 26th Annual Convention at Hilton North, 3415 WAKE FOREST ROAD, RALEIGH, NC 927609. DATE: 1ST September THROUGH 4TH September, 2017.
Town Hall Meeting: The Convention featured a town hall gathering hosted by Ngwa United Alliance, a political arm of NNAUSA. With the blessings of the National President/CEO, Dr. Innocent Abakwue, the NUA Secretary, in collaboration with the NNAUSA National Secretary worked from day one till the very last day for success of the town hall meeting. For all intents and purposes, the town hall meeting which featured our able Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu was a resounding success. Coordinated by the following patriots, Dr. Alwell Nwankoala, Dr. Mrs. Ngozi Ogbonna-Erondu, Dr. Azuike Aliche, Chief Chuck Nwokocha, and Mazi Victor Ahuruonye, pertinent issues and cardinal topics were brought to the fore. Thanks to these wonderful individuals who were involved from the planning stages of the town hall meeting till the very last minute to make sure everything worked accordingly. Dr. Okezie Ikepazu was pleased at the level of coordination and he had an excellent audience as he masterfully answered all the questions directed to him with measurable statistics. A big thank you to all the participants at the just concluded pre-convention town hall meeting. A full report on the town hall meeting will be published soon.
Council Meeting: The Council meeting started later than scheduled due to the late arrival of our special guests and the extension of the town hall meeting. Therefore, we apologize for the late start of the council meeting to our members. The able council chairman, Mr. Ike Ananaba chaired his very first council meeting, and the short but eventful time of deliberations was well utilized.
Addition of New Chapter(s): During the council Meeting, Council Members present voted overwhelming to admit Ngwa Development Association of California as the 39th active NNAUSA chapter. Florida chapter members were present at the just concluded 26h Annual Convention. They answered the convention roll call and was part of the quorum during the general assembly. The association is at a strong pedestal, and more members are joining as echoed by the National President/CEO, Dr. Abakwue
Grand Opening Ceremony: The state of the Association address was presented by the President/CEO, Dr. Innocent Abakwue. This would be his first annual convention as NNAUSA’s 8th President/CEO. He emphasized the need for the most profound Ngwa umbrella Association in North America to remain unified. He reminded us that all NNAUSA members are equal. He avowed that this premise will guide his leadership style till he hands over the baton to the next NNAUSA Leader
Honoring our Fallen Heroes: Moment of solemn silence was observed in the honor of the following; Mr. Nwosu from Washington Dc Chapter, Mrs. Dame Otaguruagu from Nevada Chapter, and HRH Eze Prof. Luke Anosike from Connecticut chapter. May the souls of our departed NNAUSA members continue to rest in peace, amen.
Delegation from Government’s House Received: The Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu received a standing ovation by the participants. Among other dignitaries received are; Abia State House Speaker, Rt. Hon. Chikwendu Kanu, Former Commissioner of Education, Prof Ikechi Mgbeoji, Aba South Execuive Chairman, Hon. Emmanuel Emeruwa, Isiala Ngwa North Executive Chairman, Hon. Ginger Onwusibe, the chairman of Ngwa Patriots forum Chief Okey Ahiwe, and the Vice Chancellor Clifford University, Prof Chimezie Omeonu who preached the sermon on Saturday at the SDA church. He captioned his message: “create in me a new heart”, he illustrated the viability of a new heart by likening it to an old car with a new engine. The congregants were blessed by the sermon.
Welcoming Abia State Delegations: The Association through her President/CEO, Dr. Innocent Abakwue congratulated Dr. Ikpeazu on his last victory at the supreme court of Nigeria, and he enjoined all Abians to get to work and help the governor to make Aba and its surroundings the beacon of hope for all Nigerians.
Call to Action by Abia State Governor: The Executive Governor of Abia State, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu during the town hall meeting on Friday, September 1st, 2017 enjoined all Abians and friends of Abia State to patronize made in Aba products. He called on all the stakeholders to identify with any ongoing project in Abia, more so, by partnering with the government of Abia State under his able leadership to make Aba the production hub of all available consumer products in the whole of Nigeria and beyond. He reiterated that together we can make Abia State stronger. He appealed to both young and old to come to Aba and see what is going and be part of this unprecedented shift in the history in Abia State. He announced to the participants that through hard work, Abia State received the honor of having the most popular governor among the 36 states governors in Nigeria.
The governor informed the participants on the efforts put in place to make Aba the face of manufacturing city for the entire nation, announcing the support of the President and Commander-in-Chief of Federal Republic of Nigeria, Mr. Buhari by signing an executive order requiring every sector in Nigerian who buys in bulk to first ask if such products can be produced domestically in Aba before zooming to the international market. Indeed, this is a fresh of breath air, the first of its kind since the creation of then Imo for the entire Abia State and should make every Abian proud. Finally, Dr. Ikepazu appealed to all Abians to be patient with his administration as they roll out effective means of administering social service to the public that will stand the test of time.
Dr. Ikpeazu met with NNAUSA youths and young adults on Saturday and interacted with them for more than an hour. Among the pomises he made to the youths were to provide employment and accommodate any Ngwa youth from diaspora who comes home to complete his National Youth Service (NYSC) at the Abia State government housing. He concluded by asking them to contact Dr. Mrs. Ngozi Ogbonna-Erondu if any of the youths is interested to come home for youth service.
Presidential Dinner: The turnout for the presidential dinner on Saturday night was epic, the hall was packed with more than 350 people, including NNAUSA members and invited guests, while a number of others could not find seats. The fund raising itself was unprecedented, such that has never been seen in recent times in NNAUSA fund events. More than $60, 000 was raised in a single night towards the completion of Ngwa Unity Complex. Some of the donors paid immediately, some through checks, others by cash, and for the first time in history of our Association, NNAUSA used an instant electronic payment (point of sale) in the hall while dinner was going to collect the pledges made by donors. This was the peak of the fund-raising event, both members and invited guests were happy and commended Dr. Innocent Abakwue for his visionary leadership and innovative ideas. The Presidential diner was more than a success by all accounts.
Convention Church Service: Both SDA and Sunday Church services were held on Saturday and Sunday respectively, participants attended in record numbers. The services were unique because everyone that came regardless of church affinity or religious nomenclature saw the need to pray together for God to heal our land and alleviate the suffering of Nde Ngwa at large. The Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu was present for both Saturday and Sunday services. The Abia State Speaker, Rt. Hon. Chikwendu Kanu was in attendance for both services and other Abia State government officials. He received the prayers of the congregants on both days. NNAUSA Executive members were in attendance and prayers were offered on their behalf for steady leadership and God’s divine guidance.
Family Forum/Health Workshop: This was one of the signature programs of Dr. Innocent Abakwue’s administration. The NNAUSA President/CEO, Dr. Abakwue emphasized the need for peaceful homes among our members and healthy lifestyles. He reiterated that NNAUSA cannot be a strong and viable 21st century association if her member families cannot live in peace. The presenters for the forum were: Mr. Innocent Onwubiko MD, MPH, his presentation was on Blood Pressure, the next presenter was Elder Nwaobasi, his presentation was on “Love that Has No Ending”. The last presenter is our very own Mrs. Ukachi Fadaka, RN, BSN, MSN, ANP-BC, her presentation was on Diabetes. All the presenters took question from the participants, the session was very educative and interactive. Participants urged the NNAUSA leadership to give it extensive publicity next year and to make sure more participants will attend. All the three power points will be sent out to the NNAUSA e-group on a later day.
Presentation by Prof. Chimezie Omeonu: The vice Chancellor of Clifford University Ihie Campus made a debut presentation during our annual convention with the help of visual aids and slides, he went line by line on the progress of the University from charter certification and licensing till the present state. He enumerated the work that was put in place before the success we all are witnessing today. He excitedly announced that Clifford had the highest number of delegates ever in the history of procuring provisional licensing for private universities in Nigeria. At the end of his presentation, he appealed to participants and every Ngwa son and daughter to unleash every help possible to make the dreams of some of the students who are financially handicapped to live up to their abilities and ambition by completing the four-year degree programs without interruption. The Power point presentation will be made available on a later date.
Anchors for 26th Annual Convention: These gentlemen assisted the NNAUSA leadership in anchoring the 2017 Annual convention. Atty: Uzoma Nwaekpe, Mr. Dennis Nwogwugwu, & Elder Ugwumba Njoku. Every participant enjoyed the renditions and monologues from these great gentlemen. We owe them immense appreciations
NNAUSA Projects: Members pledged their commitment to Ngwa Education and Outreach Foundation (NEOF), an educational endowment program through which students of Ukwa/Ngwa extraction have received full University scholarships yearly. Such commitment was equally made towards the Village Primary School Improvement (VPSI) project, through which many schools in Ukwa/Ngwa area are being transformed. Other programs such as the SDA church Tricycle through which many physically disabled in our rural communities and the Sunday cane program, through which some physically-challenged in our communities have receive ambulatory assistance. NNAUSA Ahuike, the medical mission featured the health screening at the convention ground. Thanks to Ms. Ezinwanyi Umezuruike and her team that dared the hurricane Hervey and participated fully in the convention activities.
Reignitions and Plaques Award: This year’s recognition and award ceremony was kicked off by the National President/CEO, Dr. Innocent Abakwue by inviting all the past NNAUSA Presidents/CEOs present at the 26th annual convention to join in the award ceremony. It was in the bid to unify the members, the present president is noted to be the first sitting president in the history of this Association to invite other past presidents to join him to present the awards to the past national executive committee members, the two NNAUSA members that received national merit award, and 19 graduates from tertiary institutions that received “Nwa Mere nke oma” awards. Among the past national executive members that were honored during the just concluded convention are; Ex National President/CEO, Mr. Boniface Eguzouwa, MSW, Ex National Secretary, Kingsley Chigbu, Ph.D, and Benjamin Ogbonna, MBA. The two first recipients of NNAUSA National Merit Award are; Mr. Chuck Igba, and Mr. Uzoma Mgbechinyere for their benevolence to NNAUSA at large.
First Lady Dance; the NNAUSA first lady, Mr. Adaku Abakwue was ushered into the convention hall, accompanied by ex-NNAUSA first ladies and other NNAUSA women in a glamorous way. The national President, Dr. Innocent Abakwue received and danced with his beautiful wife as she entered the hall. It was such a lovely site to behold and was commended by all and sundry.
Mmanwu Performance: For the first time, our American born children sole performed this years’ s Ekpo/Mmanwu dance with guidance of our cultural secretary, Chief Emmanuel Onwunali and former national vice president, Mr. Eugene Amanahu. It was an amazing performance that heled the participants in awe of our culture. This is a confirmation of the progress that the association has made in mentoring the next generation
General Assembly applauded the convention planning committee for all the time they spent in planning and execution of the 2017 convention. Many thanks to NNAUSA Vice President, Mrs. Chidinma Anosike-Byron, the chairman and co-chair for convention planning committee, Chief Chuck Nwokocha and Ms. Udochi Ihegranya. The fundraising committee under the able chairmanship of Mr. Louis Eguzo did a fantastic job, the fundraising this year is unprecedented. The publicity committee chaired by our very own high chief Enyimba was phenomenal. More appreciation to both North Carolina chapters for the amazing job they did. We can’t thank both chapter presidents, Chief Chuck Nwokocha and Mr. Ike Ananaba enough. Their hospitality was top-class. The presidential dinner committee chaired by Dr. Godwin Ananaba out performed our expectation. Everyone will attest that the presidential dinner was one of the best in recent times. Time will fail us to enumerate the work of the hospitality committee, convention brochure committee and many other sub committees. The success of this convention was as a result of all your hand work.
NNAUSA EX Presidents: it was eye catchy to witness how Dr. Abakwue brought these great leaders to a common platform, the participants appreciated the gesture from this administration for being inclusive. The National President/CEO, Dr. Innocent Abakwue has pledged to continue to work hard to unify the association more than any time in the history of this association. His mantra remains, “Unity is strength”
United Ngwa Women Association: During their presentation, Chief Mrs. Patience Nwokocha enumerated the ongoing projects with visual aids in Okpuala Ngwa. These group of women undertook the rehabilitation of the old maternity building; the grand opening is slated to be sometime in November 2017 after which the keys will be handed over to the operators. Ms. Nwokocha made a clarion call to all lovers of Ala Ngwa to join hands in this worthy cause, more so to all Ngwa women to join this group.
Echoes African Magazine: This African magazine company based in New York was on the ground from Friday night through Monday, they covered the convention from the opening ceremony to closing on Sunday. They interviewed the Governor of Abia State, the NNAUSA President, NNAUSA National Secretary, and Ex NNAUSA President, Dr. Obinna Ebere. The editor made a promise that the company will provide a special edition for NNAUSA. She has asked me to request your pleasure to subscribe to Echoes African Magazine, log on to www.echoesafrica.com , click on order and subscribe or see the publishers.
Thank You Note: Participants applauded the National Executive under the able leadership of Dr. Innocent Abakwue for an outstanding performance. The general feeling of participants and the convention atmosphere was very cordial. The participants expressed unequivocal appreciation to the host chapters and overall convention planning committee headed by the National Vice President, Mrs. Chidinma Anosike-Byron.
(errors/omission are not intentional)
Dr. Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, Governor of Abia State, for honoring our invitation and donating a reasonable amount towards Ngwa Unity Complex and pledging to construct the road leading to Ngwa Unity Complex through our resident contractor Mr. Ihuoma
The Abia State Speaker, Rt. Hon. Chikwendu Kanu, for honoring our invitation and donating generously on behalf of Abia House members of Ngwa extraction.
Chairman Isiala Ngwa North L. G.A, Hon. Ginger Onwusibe for honoring our invitation and great work he is doing in Isiala Ngwa North at large.
The Executive Chairman Aba South L.G.A Hon. Emmanuel Emeruwa, our very own from Atlanta chapter for honoring our invitation and his good representation in Aba South.
The Chairman Ngwa Patritoic Forum, Chief Okey Ahiwe who donated handsomely on behalf of Ngwa Patriot Forum
To all Government Officials present at the convention. Hon members of Abia State House of Assembly, Senior Special Advisers/Assistants to the Governor of Abia State, all other government officials that honored our invitations.
Dr. Mrs. Ngozi Ogbonna-Erondu, Abia State Diaspora Coordinator for tirelessly working behind the scenes with the national president and national secretary in making sure that the Abia State governor was present throughout the convention and her overall support for NNAUSA.
The Vice Chancellor Clifford University Ihie Campus, Prof. Chimezie Omeonu, for honoring our invitation and preaching at Saturday church service.
The only Ngwa woman Abia State House of Assembly, Hon. Dr. Mrs. Blessing Nwagba, for honoring our invitation and taking out time to address the Ngwa women during the convention.
The National Exectuive Committee of NNAUSA- Dr. Innocent Abakwue, President/CEO, Mrs. Chidinma Anosike-Byroon, Vice President, Mazi. Victor Ahuruonye, National Secretary, Mr. Chris Nwaukwa, Financial Secretary, Dr. Mrs. Kelechi Irondi, Treasurer, and Chief Emmanuel Onwunali, Cultural Secretary, for providing proven leadership and working respective Convention Committees in making sure that the overall outcome of the convention was successful.
The Presenters, Mr. Godson Onwubiko, MD, MPH, Elder Nwaobasi former lecture at UNIBEN, and Mrs. Ukachi Fadaka for their in-depth presentations.
The Abia Contractor, Mr. Timothy Ihuoma, a.k.a Popular for accepting to construct a new road leading into Ngwa Unity Complex in collaboration with the state Governor.
The First Lady, Mrs. Adaku Abakwue for making sure our Governor was well fed in conjunction with Mrs. Ocheze Ugboaja, Governor’s younger sister.
The 2017 Convention Co-Chairpersons, Chief Chuck Nwokocha and Ms. Udochi Ihegranya for their outstanding performance and commitment in ensuring we had a successful convention.
Members of North Carolina Region through the President—Ngwa Union NC chapter, Chief Chuck Nwokocha, and the President Ngwa Progressive NC Chapter, Mr. Ike Ananaba for their unmatched hospitality and resilience in making sure we had a successful convention.
NNAUSA Youths/Young Adults under the able leadership of Mrs. Ogechi Nnamdi and other local chapter youth reps, we appreciate how you worked to keep the youths enaged and safe throughout
All Sub Committee Chairpersons and members for all the work they did in ensuring we had a successful convention.
The SDA Church committee under the able Leadership of Elder Ugwumba Njoku for orgianzing one of the best church service this year and the tricycle project. We thank you all.
The Sunday Church Committee under the able Leadership of Rev. Levi Nwaohuocha for their great work and feeding the members with spiritual food during the Sunday Services.
All the Ex-Offcers of NNAUSA, more so the EX National President, we deeply appreciate your presence and support even those who could not make it to this convention.
The Masters of Ceremony; Atty Uzoma Nwaekpe, Mr. Dennis Nwogwugwu, and Elder Ugwumba Njoku for their mastery of the audience and timely delivery during the entire convention.
The National Council under the able leadership of Mr. Ike Ananaba, we appreciate you for your collaboration with the NNAUSA leadership in making sure that the Association runs smoothly
All Ex National Council Chairmen and members, we recognized your presence and immense contributions to this great association.
To all the volunteers who provided one form of assistance or the other to the success of this just concluded convention, we appreciate you all.
A big thank you to ALL 2017 convention attendees/participants including children and adults for their good and orderly conduct. This year’s convention was in no small measure orderly.
Every NNAUSA member or visitors that wanted to see the governor had the express opportunity without any restriction to see him. Both the governor and NNAUSA leadership were happy at the outcome of the convention.
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Victor Ahuruonye, MPH