Owa-Oyibu, headquarter of Ika North East Local Government Area of Delta State was agog all through the weekend of August 19 to 21, as dignitaries stormed the community for the final burial rites of Princess Margaret Obaigbena, the mother of Prince Nduka Obaigbena, Chairman of Arise Television and Thisday Newspapers.
The late Princess who died at the age of 87 years, was born in Enugu on August 16, 1934, to Pa Paul Owekwe and Mrs. Grace Osinole Usifoh of Owa Kingdom, Ika North East Local Government, Delta State.
The event witnessed personalities from diverse backgrounds, who came to pay their last respect.
They included governors, top politicians, eminent Nigerians and foreign guests.
The Governor of Edo State, Mr. Godwin Nogheghase Obaseki was also there along with his Delta State counterpart, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa.
In his tribute, Mr. Obaseki said, “Mama was a healthcare worker, a nurse who took care of people, brought people to life and cared for them through life as a nurse and the way she led her life was as an exemplary life-giver.
“Not having just given birth to a child or children, she saw them through maturity because in her community, she was present for her people.
“Don’t forget, we all started in Bendel State and then she came to Delta State and even after she retired as a Chief Nursing Officer, she continued to serve and provide advice to government of Delta State at that point in time.
“So, for us, what she means is somebody who lived a life of service, somebody who lived the life of a mother to a community and a mother to everybody”, Obaseki said.
The funeral service held on Saturday, August 20th, 2022 at St. Andrew’s Anglican Church, Owa-Oyibu and was followed by entertainment of guests.
Present at the service were, the All Progressives Congress, APC presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Labour Party’s presidential candidate, Dr. Peter Obi, President, Dangote’s Group, Aliko Dangote, Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti, Governor Charles Soludo of Anambra State, Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, and Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State.
Also at the event were the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, Mr. Jim Ovia, Tony Elumelu and ex governors Chief Olusegun Osoba, Donald Duke and Adams Oshiomhole, among others.
The media was represented by veterans, publishers and practitioners, including Mr. Ray Ekpu, veteran journalist and co-founder of Newswatch publications, Hon. Orobosa Omo-Ojo JP, Midwest Herald Publisher, Dr. Reuben Abati of Arise Television, Sylvester Ehis, Mr. Fidelis Anosike, Daily Times Editor-in-chief and his wife – Rita Dominic.
Chief Dele Momodu, Publisher, Ovation Magazine, Mr. Seyi Smith, Executive Secretary of Newspaper Proprietors’ Association of Nigeria also graced the occasion.
The Honourable Minister of Labour, State, Festus Keyamo SAN and his counterpart of Trade, and Industry and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo were present.
Governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Segun Oni, as well as former Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, the Chief Lawson Omokhodion, all came to identify with Prince Obaigbena, the enigma that brought poise to the Nigerian Press.