By Michael Nnebife
The traditional ruler of Ukwulu ancient kingdom in Dunukofia Local Government Area, Anambra State, Igwe Peter Uyanwa, will soon handover two brand new vehicles to two newly ordained Catholic priests from Ukwulu Community; Rev Fr Emmanuel Okafor and Rev Fr Peter Okonkwo, to enable them carry out their service to God with ease and the dignity of priesthood.
The traditional ruler made this known during a Holy Mass to herald his annual cultural festival held in his palace, last week.
The Ukwulu monarch further disclosed that he had concluded an arrangement to procure another brand new vehicle worth N4.8 million for another indigene of the community, Deacon Patrick Onuekwusi, who will be ordained later this year, adding that the gesture was also to encourage the youth of the community to embrace the priestly vocation.
Performing during the event, the monarch eulogized the state Governor, Professor Chukwuma Soludo, and his wife, Nonye, for what he described as their people-oriented programmes, especially the recently launched free antenatal services, and prayed for further development in the state.
Earlier in a homily during the Mass, the priest in charge of Aloysius’ Catholic Church, Ukwulu, Rev Fr Nicholas Okorocha, commended the Ukwulu Community and their traditional ruler for placing God first in their affairs at the cultural festival.
While thanking God for blessing Ukwulu Community with Igwe Uyanwa, the cleric prayed for divine wisdom upon the monarch and a change of heart for wrongdoers in the community for enduring peace.
In his remarks, the priest in charge of St Theresa’s Catholic Church, Ukwulu, Rev Fr Francis Anene, who presided over the Mass, thanked Igwe Uyanwa for his continual donation of car to every Ukwulu indigenous priest and his unflinching support to the Church, praying for more prosperity for the monarch.
In an interview with the press, an illustrious son of the community and former Vice-Chancellor, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Prof Fidelis Okafor, described Igwe Uyanwa’s support to the Church as marvelous, saying that the Igwe supported the Church so much by using his resources to evangelize.
‘Every native of this community that became a priest, Igwe gave him a car for many years past and has continued to do that even in this difficult time,’ Prof Okafor said.
Also one of the Ukwulu Community leaders, Chief Ugochukwu Akaeze, corroborated Okafor, adding that Igwe Uyanwa started donating a car each to newly ordained Ukwulu indigenous priests when he was President General of the community and was doing it when he was the traditional prime minister, noting that it was not a new thing for him.
Akaeze and Okafor further noted that the festival brought about an atmosphere of peace in the community.
They enjoined the traditional rulers in the state and South East Geopolitical Zone in Nigeria, to use the festival to maintain and enhance conviviality among their subjects for sustainable peace in their respective communities.