Olubadan of Ibadan land, Oba Lekan Balogun, Alli Okunmade II, has described the sudden death of renowned optician and Eze Nd’Igbo Ibadan and Oyo State, Dr Alex Anozie, as a personal loss, adding that it came as a rude shock to him.
Oba Balogun, in a condolence message made available to newsmen in Ibadan on Thursday by his Personal Assistant (Media), Oladele Ogunsola, described the late Dr Anozie as a very peaceful and peace loving personality, who used the virtue to ensure good neighbourliness between the Igbo community and their Yoruba hosts.
Recalling the celebration of his 26 years’ leadership of the pan Igbo socio-cultural group last June during which he (Olubadan) commended him for the way he had been piloting the affairs of the group, Olubadan said, “the Igbo community has lost a rare leader who would always be remembered for his advocacy for oneness of Nigeria irrespective of tribe, language and religious differences.”
The late Eze Nd’Igbo, according to Olubadan faced a lot of challenges, but bore all with calmness, humility and sense of purpose, adding that these accounted for his success and ability to lead his people for that long.
Oba Balogun, who noted that as painful as his sudden exit may be, coupled with the loss of his wife last year, urged the children to be of good cheer because of the good legacies left behind by their departed father.
“I urge you to feel happy because you have a father to be proud of. Dr Anozie lived very well and was at peace with his maker going by his disposition to fellow beings.
“To the Igbo community, I share your pains and grief over the loss of a rare gem. A bridge builder and a leader that was compassionate and full of ideas for the well-being of all. I urge you to remain steadfast and committed to the ideals of peaceful coexistence and good neighborliness which he professed,” Oba Balogun added.
Commiserating with the generality of the people over the exit of the Igbo leader, Olubadan said that Dr Anozie’s exit would be felt by all, especially those who enjoyed his optical services.
“It was an act of God which no mortal had power over. Let’s all thank God for the life of the man and pray for the repose of his peaceful soul,” the monarch added.