By Jude Atupulazi
The Provost, Federal College of Education (Technical), Umunze, Anambra State, Dr Tessy Okoli, has been conferred with a chieftaincy title by the Orumba Traditional Rulers Council in recognition of her laudable contribution in promoting women's education in Anambra State. The award ceremony was the climax of the two-day celebration of the 27th Anniversary of the creation of Orumba South Local Government, held on Saturday, October 27, 2018.
Created on August 27, 1991 by the then military President, General Ibrahim Babangida, the premises of Orumba South Local Government turned to a political carnival, with top government officials, political pundits and captains of industry in attendance.
The chairman, Traditional Rulers Council, His Royal Highness, Igwe P.N. Ezeamama, led other traditional rulers to bestow the traditional title of Mma Chinyereugo of Orumba (Jewel from God) on the Provost. The traditional rulers said Dr Okoli was chosen for the award after a meticulous screening exercise for promoting girl-child education and empowerment of women in society.
Aside being an inspiration to younger ones by becoming the first internal Provost of the College, Ezeamama described Dr Okoli as an amazon, who had left an indelible footprint in the education sector, where she had spent 26 years of her work life as a lecturer.
The chairman, Orumba South Local Government Area, Hon Ray Onyegu, said Orumba South Local Government, made up of 15 communities, boasted of countless prominent sons and daughters that had contributed greatly to national development.
He said the award was a humble recognition of their hard work and an encouragement that would spur them to greater service of society.
Aside the Provost, other personalities were also conferred with chieftaincy titles by the Orumba traditional rulers. They include the wife of the Governor of Anambra State, Chief Mrs Eberechukwu Obiano the member representing Orumba North and South in the Federal House of Representatives, Hon Ben Nwankwo and the Commissioner for Environment, Anambra State, Hon Mike Okonkwo.
In her response after the award, the Provost, Dr Okoli, commended the efforts of the traditional rulers in promoting peace in their domain. She said the College would continue to partner with all relevant stakeholders and thanked the traditional rulers for their overwhelming support for the College.
Earlier before the conferment of awards, a public lecture was held on Friday, 26th October, 2018, at Dr Alex Ekwueme Auditorium, FCE (T) Umunze, with a large number of members of the host community in attendance. The guest speaker at the event, Hon Ben Nwankwo, member representing Orumba North and South in the House of Representatives, charged the people of Orumba to eschew bitterness and forge a united front in addressing the social, economic and political challenges facing the area.
Okoli's journey to greatness started when she emerged as the best graduating student, Department of Agric Education, Anambra State College of Education in 1988. She further bagged her first degree in Agric Education from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) in 1990 and obtained her M.Ed in 1995 from the same university. She also obtained Ph.D from the Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) in 2011.
She later joined the Federal College of Education (Technical) Umunze on March 3, 1992 as an Assistant Lecturer in the Department of Agricultural Education. She rose through the ranks to become a Principal Lecturer in 2007 and later Chief Lecturer on October 1, 2011. She rose to the peak of her career, when she was appointed the 4th substantive Provost on May 17, 2018 by President Muhammadu Buhari.