Ikpeazu bridges rift between Presbyterian Church and Okagwe community – The Sun Nigeria
Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State has resolved the lingering dispute between the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria and the Okagwe community in the Ohafia Local Government Area of the State over the location of Hope Waddel University in the community.
For about 15 years, the people of Okagwe have been locked in a major crisis with the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria over some issues surrounding the location of the proposed church-owned Hope Waddel University in the community. .
A statement from Sir Onyebuchi Ememanka, the governor’s chief press secretary, said the governor called and moderated a meeting last week where some of the issues were resolved. The meeting was held at the Governor’s Lodge, Aba, in the presence of representatives from each of the parties. The church delegation was led by the Prelate and Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Nigeria, His Eminence, Nzie Nsi Eke, while the community delegation was led by Paramount Chief, Ezeogo Achi Uka Okoji .
The governor personally moderated the proceedings of the meeting and heard from both sides. He made several commitments, both personally and as governor, in particular to ease the troubles of the community.
It is understood that another meeting between the two parties was held again this week at the Governor’s Lodge Aba, where the Governor again presided over the final settlement of the dispute and the signing of the peace agreement between the parties. .
During the meeting, Governor Ikpeazu challenged the parties to work harmoniously henceforth and to avoid anything that could cause any form of distraction. He instructed the church to see the community as key players in the project, having voluntarily ceded 100 hectares of their ancestral lands for the university. He also told community leaders to see the church as their partner who has brought them positive development that will forever change the trajectory of their community.
Governor Ikpeazu reaffirmed his commitment to build a new secondary school in Okagwe. “When community leaders raised the issue of an outstanding court case and one of their sons who died in the crisis and has yet to be buried, Governor Ikpeazu pledged to to speak to the parties in court and to ask the State Attorney General to ask the court to allow him to arbitrate the matter, he also promised to contribute personally to the burial costs of the deceased and also to help the people dependent.
“The governor said his intervention was deliberate because he clearly understood what the university would mean to the community in the near future,” the statement said.
Among those present at the meeting are the Governor’s Deputy Chief of Staff, Chief Olugu Kalu Ugba and Uche S Awa, SAN.