2013 NUSA CONVENTION MINUTES
DAY 1 : 7/4/2013 ------ NUSA EXECUTIVES AND DELEGATES MEETING
Present: Nathan Momah, Grace Anosike, Chukwuezi Okeke, Elias Okonkwo, Ifeanacho Okeke,Eke Okeke, Ikechukwu Ofomata, Onochie Ojukwu, Chidi Metu, Emmanuel Nsoedo, Ike Ezulike,Emmanuel Obierika, Leo Okoli, Chike Momah, Chike Odunukwe, Ebube Odunukwe, Jay UdokaOdunukwe, Onochie Madubuko, Chris Ulasi, Julian Anigbogu, Chikezie, Ajene, Mbanefo Obienu,Sam Nwosu, Lizzy Nwosu, Peter Onyemelukwe, Sidney Chikwendu, Mike Okeke, Alex NwejiGodson A. Anosike, Ejike Ajene, Ajulu Uzodike, Peter Modebelu. Bishop Anosike.Ethel Momah
The president Nathan Momah called the meeting to order, and thanked all for taking time to come to this year annual convention. Prayer was by Ethel Momah. She prayed for a good and productive convention, and thanked God for bringing us all together. Dr Ofomata- National convention chairman, thanked all present for coming, and his special thanks goes out to Boston chapter for hosting the convention. He gave a rundown of the scheduled activities for the convention, starting July 4th to 7th.
He said that Election Day was schedule for Friday night as opposed to Saturday due to time constraint.
Bishop Anosike, who was a past secretary of NUSA, questioned why the reading of the last convention minute will be optional per the president remark, and also why the election schedule was moved to Friday, given the fact that usually the executive body has to be dissolved before election can be conducted. He said that problem will arise the next day after election as to who will run the activities. NUSA president Nathan Momah responded on the minute issue by saying that the General Secretary resigned his position without completing the minute for the last convention, and the only part of the minutes available is the part written by the assistant secretary. He clarified by saying that we will read the part recorded by Chukwuezi Okeke and also the communiqué that was put out after the convention. Grace Anosike spoke against having the election on Friday. Her view was supported by Chike Odunukwe. Chris Ulasi requested that we speak gently to each other, and spoke in favor of having the election on Saturday, unless there is a compelling reason that will warrant having it on Friday. Chidi Metu also appealed to all to please speak in respectful manner , and said that things that have to do with scheduling during convention is not a constitutional issues and is at the discretion of the convention committee. Julain Anigbogu supported having the election on Saturday unless there is a compelling reason to change it to Friday. Udoka Odunukwe spoke in support of revisiting what we are doing to reorient the purpose of NUSA. Leo Okoli said that there is no constitutional mandate on the day that election must be held, hence it is at the discretion of the committee. Ikechukwu Ofomata, and Elias okonkwo explained that the only reason the committee deemed it necessary to move the election to Friday was for us to have enough time on Saturday for fund raising. This was supported by Eke Okeke whose opinion was that we have to be flexible and willing to adapt to what will help us based on the past experiences. He echoed that the only reason for moving the Election Day to Friday was due to time constraint on Saturday. Ethel Momah said that the last time convention was held in Boston, they complained that the reason they lost a lot of money was because of the election, which lasted for more that the allotted time, and affected the starting time of the gala night. Ikechukwu Ofomata reminded us that innovation is the key to growth, and if something is not working we should be willing to try new idea, he appealed that we please keep the agenda schedule as drafted. Bishop Anosike said that we cannot change a tradition without a higher scrutiny. Chukwuezi Okeke requested that we please speak gently to each other regarding this issue, and at the end if we cannot reach a consensus, we will have to put it to a vote, and majority opinion should prevail. Chidi Metu opinion was that if the executive body has to be dissolved, then we cannot change the Election Day, without following the required process.
Emma Nsoedo supported Chid
i’s opinion, and at this point there was a demand to get the constitution to see what it actually has to say regarding dissolving the Executives before election can be held. Julian Anigbogu read the part of the constitution that have to do with election, and from the majority opinion the constitution is silent on that subject. Chike Ajene said that the problem is change, and when there is change of such magnitude the delegates should communicate it properly to the local chapters.
The president Nathan Momah informed us that majority of members of the New York Tristate are not present at this convention. He said that at the delegates executives meeting in the past, there was overwhelming support to forgive the outstanding $2000 owed by the New York Tristate. At this point a letter of apology on behalf of New York Tristate was submitted for the record. Chike Odunukwe said that the letter was signed by Alex Nweji, and he is not a member of the New York Tristate executives. Alex Nweji said that Ossy Okeke position is that the NUSA executives are trying to destroy him and the chapter, but that he did not agree with Ossy's position on this. He believes that the issue is about the list which New York tristate submitted that had names that should not be on the list. He said that he wrote the letter on behalf of his chapter members who agree with his position on this matter. He said that the letter was written in good faith for the progress of NUSA, and not to suppress the New York Tristate president. Chidi Metu said that we did not need the letter to forgive New York Tristate outstanding debt, his opinion was that we can do it now if we want to. Eke Okeke said that our problem is from not telling the truth, and that we must continue to transform this association for the benefit of all. Chike Odunukwe said that he predicted a long time ago what is happening now, because per his opinion NUSA constitution has a part which is against the constitution of USA. Ethel Momah said that at one of the executive delegates meeting , Mike Anazodo alleged that Dallas number was also inflated without providing any evidence to support that. She will pass the same Dallas list tomorrow, and she is appealing to anybody that has evidence of any erroneous name on the list to please come forward with it. Julian Anigbogu said that Houston chapter was the chapter that said that the outstanding $2000 New York Tristate should be forgiving. Elias Okonkwo moved a motion for NUSA to forgive New York Tristate $2000 outstanding, and was supported by Leo Okoli. The resulting vote was all in favor unanimous, and there was no vote against the motion. The President informed the meeting that he requested, membership lists from all chapters, and that it was only Dallas and Atlanta that has complied. Mike Okeke said that we need to do things in order. He said that we have two options, either we follow the constitution or we do things by default. Mike Okeke said that per his opinion since we have not been following the constitution, he will not want the election to be by the delegates vote, rather he will like all present to have the opportunity to vote during the election .Chike Ajene questioned what is the default that Mike Okeke is referring to. Chidi Metu opinion was that we will not know how members of each chapter wish to vote, unless voting is by their delegates. Grace Anosike said that anybody at the floor can come up to run for election, and be voted for, and per her opinion we have to decide which constitution to follow, the ratified or the not ratified. Ethel Momah said that it was agreed that candidates should announce in advance so that their local chapter will get the opportunity to support them and also to give members of the local chapter chance to decide on who they wish to support and advice their delegate on who to vote for. Chike Momah appealed for calm, and that we consider having the election on Saturday. The general con-census reached was to have election on Saturday at 10am, and delegates and all present at the meeting were encouraged to share the information with others not present. The convention committee will provide a revised agenda reflecting the change on Friday morning. Sydney Chikwendu opinion was that 1.5hrs allocated for election will not be enough time. Ajulu Uzodike asked if we can have election during the bus tour. He suggested we learn to do things in more informal way to encourage relaxation, and help reduce tension in our meetings. Elias Okonkwo move for adjournment and was seconded by Julian Anigbogu. Closing prayer was by Alex Nweji, and the meeting adjourned at 1215 am
DAY 2 7/5/2013. Elias Okonkwo welcomed all present for coming to the convention. He introduced the local convention organizing committee chairperson Eke Okeke. He thanked all for taking time to come to Boston for the convention, and told us that Igwe Nnewi. Dr Kenneth Orizu is here to grace this occasion, and that we will defer the presentation of the welcoming kolanut until Igwe comes to the hall. He advised everybody to please make sure that they are properly registered, and collect their badge and meal coupons. The opening prayer was said by Sister Reverend Ngozi Obi. She prayed that God will help us in all our deliberations, and grant us journey mercies back to our respective dwellings, when we depart. He reminded all that we will be having daily morning benedictions from 6-7am, and encouraged all to make out time and come. Her prayer is for us to have a successful and fruitful convention. She introduced her co-servant in the Lord Dr Edwin Okafor, who gave a testimony of how God cured his diabetes. He said that he is now diabetes free and he is not taking any medicine for the condition, and he credited that to his faith in God. He prayed for the healing of all people in the room that may be suffering from any ailment. The National convention organizing chairman Dr Ik Ofomata gave a summary of the convention agenda. He welcomed prominent Nnewi people present, especially those that came from Nigeria, Justice Ubezuonu, Chief Ajulu Uzodike, Senator Onyeabo Obi, Chief Chike Momah, Chief Agbasi,
Host chapter president's opening remarks: The hosting chapter vice-president Mrs. Liz Nwosu, welcomed all the convention attendees, and told us that the Boston chapter will do everything possible to make sure that we are well taking care of. She on behalf of their president who was absent at the time extend a worm welcome especially to dignitaries who traveled all the way from Nigeria to grace this occasion. She reminded us of the important role played by Boston chapter at the formation of NUSA.
IGWE' ENTRANCE: all the convention attendees remained standing to welcome his Majesty Igwe Kenneth Orizu coming into the convention hall. He came with his wife and some important Nnewi dignitaries. Kola nut was presented to Igwe and his entourage. Kola nut was also distributed to Nnewi elders present.
Breaking of the kola nut: His Majesty Dr. Kenneth Orizu Igwe Nnewi, prayed over the kola nut and officially opened the convention. He prayed that we have peace, unity, and always remember where we come from. He prayed that God will help us accomplish our mission to a foreign land, and also help us to always remember our home land Nnewi. Senator Onyabo Obi (Osorji Nnewi) also prayed over the kola nut. He prayed that the prayers and wishes of the Igwe may come to fruition, and that we may have peace in NUSA, and live in brotherhood.
Chapter Roll Calls:
1 Boston chapter present (acknowledged by Lizzy Nwosu)
2. Dallas chapter present ( acknowledged by Ethel Momah)
3 Houston Chapter present (acknowledged by Dr Chris Ulasi)
4. Carlifornia chapter present ( acknowledged by Chidi Metu)
5 North Carolina absent
6. Atlanta chapter present ( Chris Anyaegbunam, and Mike Okeke)
7.New York Tristate present acknowledged by Alex Nweji although some raised objection that they
are not officially represented.
8.At large present (acknowledged by Leo Okoli.
9.Chicago chapter present (acknowledged by Samson Ileka).
Boston Chapter: Report was by Lizzy Nwosu—Vice president. She said that Boston is ready for our coming, and will do everything possible to make sure that we are comfortable. They have so many of their Children graduating from college this year.
Dallas Chapter: Report was by Ethel Momah---President of Dallas chapter. She said that the last NUSA convention that was hosted by Dallas is the best convention ever. She also said that Dallas is thriving and continues to hold monthly meetings at member homes. Dallas had some of their members who lost family members and the organization helped organized wake keeping for them. They are working on establishing member benefits package. They will have picnic in august, and end of the year party in November. She said that since after the Dallas issue was resolved, some seems to not want things to settle , but that Dallas is still thriving despite that. She said that she has copies of Dallas membership list and is willing to provide a copy to anybody that is interested in having a copy.
California Chapter: Report was by Chidi Metu, and he said that the chapter started to drift backwards. and that some of their officials were not willing to continue, in their official position. Hence they had to call for emergency meeting, which helped them reorganize and re-energize the association. He is happy to report that today California is doing great and heading to higher grounds. He introduced Attorney Chi Uba, member of California chapter also present.
Houston Chapter: Report was by Emma Nsoedo--- President of Houston Chapter. He said that they just had their Annual picnic. They are working on furnishing a Library, and Dr Chris Ulasi and Ibekwe are contacts for anybody wishing to donate towards that project. They are working on having Ikemba day on 2nd November, and that will be annual event going forward. He said that Houston chapter is the most peaceful chapter within NUSA affiliates, because they always find a way to resolve their problems amicably.
At large Chapter: Report was by Leo Okoli (nnu tulu nne_). He said that the chapter is thriving and increasing in membership size. He said that at large consists of members from different cities in USA who do not have enough people to constitute a chapter, and they are all welcomed to join At large chapter. He said that Mississippi where he reside recently elected a very progressive mayor who is very keen to African affairs, and he will investigate if the city and the mayor can help in any way possible should we decide to bring the convention to his neck of the wood.
New York Tristate: Report was by Alex Nweji. He requested that members of New York Tristate present. to please stand up and be recognized, and about 6 -7 families stood up. He appealed on behalf of their members that NUSA forgive their action that resulted in the last NUSA botched election. He pledged their support to NUSA, and hope that things will be resolved soon.
Chicago Chapter: Report was by Selina Ileka. Who said that they are doing well, and pledged their support to NUSA. Morning session ended at 1132 Am for the bus tour.
Afternoon Session Meeting called to order by the president Nathan Momah at 1645 pm.
READING OF THE MINUTES: Part of the recorded minute by Chukwuezi Okeke and the convention communique was read by the assistant secretary. The part recorded by the secretary Reginald Obiamalu was not available, because he resigned his position, without providing the minutes to NUSA.
AMMENDEMENTS OF THE MINUTES: Dr Grace Anosike said that in the part of the minute not written she said that what we have in the constitution was not ratified, and Ethel Momah replied that it was not true, and that it was ratified. There was disagreement from some quarters at the floor how we can debate this given the fact that the record is not available to refer to it for clarification..
ADOPTION OF THE MINUTE: The adoption of the minute was moved by Emma Nsoedo and was seconded by Peter Modebelu, and the minute was adopted.
MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES: Chidi Metu said that in Los Angeles., a constitution was adopted , and some are still claiming that it was not adopted. He suggested that we do it today to avoid further confusion. He will like us to cure it now if there is any defect so claimed. Chike Odunukwe said that there is a way to adopt a constitution, which states that 2/3 majority must support it to pass. Chief Chike Momah question if the constitution stated that claim by Chike Odunukwe?. Nnerika Okonkwo said that in Dallas he mentioned that what was claimed passed in Los Angeles did not pass, and it will be fine if we want to discuss it now. Eke Okeke said that he was the chairman during the constitutional amendment process in Los Angeles, and Dr Grace Odunukwe was the presiding president at that convention, and she did not raise any objection at that time. He requested that those raising the issue tell us line item of the passed amendment that did not pass. Dr Grace Anosike claimed that she said that voting abstention is not a yes vote, and mathematically we did not secure 2/3 vote required for passage. Onochie Madubuko said that we have passed that stage and cannot go back. He said that the Vice president Dr Grace Anosike who was the presiding president at that constitutional amendment did not raise the issue at the communique she put out after the convention, and ran for vice presidential position under that same constitution.Chi Mbelu spoke in support of Madubuko's statement. She said that she was a member of the last Electoral committee and she tried her best to find any New York Tristate member that will validate the list of membership they submitted , and non came forward and that is what the issue is about, and not any constitutional amendment. Julian Anigbogu was of the opinion that if there is any part of the constitution that did not pass we have to remove it. Chief Ajulu Uzodike said that he was at the Los Angeles convention, and that his statement at that convention was that we have a dysfunctional executive. He said that he was present and can remember that the issue was trashed out that day by members and delegates present. He recalled that the amendments passed as stated.
Dr Grace Anoske restated that 2/3 majority did not vote to pass it, But Chidi Metu responded that the constitution is clear that 2/3 is based on those present and voted. Chief Ajulu Uzodike (Ozi uzo Nnewi)
suggested, that we stop the debate, and let the court decide. Ifeancho Okeke said that it was clear by the record that the amendment passed. and should be settled now.
The president Nathan Momah provided copies of the constitution for all to read. He said that it is also posted in NUSA website, and will encourage all to take time to read it. He said that upon becoming National president of NUSA, they went to Dallas and helped settle the issue and brought them back as one chapter. He brought forward the idea of announcing election candidates in advance so that all local chapters can advise their delegates on which candidate to vote for. When he took office convention hosting chapters were losing money and he helped to restructure the ratio formula to help mitigate the problem. NUSA medical missions have been very successful, and NUSA donated beds to Nnewi Hospitals. He pleaded that we tone down our rhetoric on Nnewi forum. He said that the money sent to Nnewi is intact. The president was able to re-organize our website, and hope that we continue to maintain it going forward. He would like us to work on amicably settling our issues out of court knowing that we are all brothers. and appealed to all that know Ossy Okeke to encourage him to withdraw his court action and have us settle this in house. Chidi Metu thanked the president for his selfless service to NUSA , and also thanked all the members of his executive for devoting time to serve Nnewi. He appealed to all of us to try and work as a team and stop bringing discord to the organization. He stated that we should stop insulting our elected executives. Dr Chris Ulasi thanked the president for his service, and reminded him that the things that were said, he does not deserve , but was said due to his position as the president and a servant of the people. He reminded us that a lot more outrageous things have been said about Obama the president of USA, and the most powerful man in the world. He suggested we set up a committee to take the litigation out of court, and that we have to minimize conflicts to avoid further problems. Grace Anosike said that she moved a motion to settle this out of court, but that others were not in support. Samson Ileka from Chicago chapter wants to be involved in talking to the person that brought the lawsuit, and he volunteered to serve on the committee. He opined that we all have the spirit of service and reduce ego in all of us.
Was given by Ifanacho Okeke (financial secretary) please see attached financial report as circulated, and placed on record. Ifeanacho started by saying that he will like us to settle the issue of constitutional amendments. He moved a motion that constitutional amendments made in California passed as recorded, and was supported by Ethel Momah. Voting on the motion was by a voice vote, and those in favor carried by majority present and non voted against. Hence the yea (yes) vote passed. Attorney Udoka Odunkwe said that he has not seen the lawsuit, and it may be without merit, and may be dismissed by the judge. He suggested that we defend the lawsuit, and if it is found without merit, we may have to seek for our attorney’s fees reimbursement from the plaintiff. The following people were named to the committee charged with speaking to Ossy Okeke. 1.Samson Ileka, 2.Chike Momah, 3. Chris Ulasi, 4.Grace Anosike, 5.Alex Nweji, 6. Somto Ubezuonu.. Chinelo Ejimbe asked if the president is over ruling Udoka Odunukwe's suggestion by naming the committee. Chike Momah requested that he step aside from the committee, because he is not sure how his presence will be welcomed by Ossy Okeke. Chukwuezi Okeke noted that the same people who instigated the lawsuit in Dallas that lasted for over 6 years, are also at work this time and must be stopped. Chidi Metu questioned what the committee is going to tell Ossy Okeke , and what will be the point of reference. Somto Ubezuonu said that he is a certified mediator, and will volunteer his service. He also said that you ca n withdraw a lawsuit at any time if we are sincere. The president indicated that the committee will start work after the convention. Chief Chike Momah suggested we add one or two names of people who are supporting Ossy Okeke, and he named Dr. Ebube Odunukwe. Justice Ubezuona (agba Nnewi) asked if the person who brought the lawsuit has any family member present. He said that his family members need to inform him that he will be ostracized if he did not withdraw the lawsuit. He said the lawsuit is against Nnewi and must not be tolerated. Dr Ebube Odunukwe said that he had no influence on Udoka Odunukwe's comment, because they do not fear if their own house is in order. Alex Ofoma suggested we try and settle issues as brothers, and seek solution to our problems. Uche Okeke from New York opined that there are some people behind New York tristate issue, and we should try and work on bringing peace to New York tristate because they have already divided into two factions because of the lingering problem. Dr Ofomata moved for the adoption of the financial report, and was supported by Emma Obieke. Nnerika Okonkwo asked about the library account., and also that he has not seen the Dallas convention financial report. Nnerika also questioned if NUSA has this Year annual budget prepared. Ifeanacho Okeke said that money was moved from the library account to the emergency account. He also answered that we will work on this year budget after we agree on what to do this year. H e said that he will make a copy of the Dallas convention financial report available to Nnerika, although he should have gotten a copy from his local chapter. Delegate Ezulike questioned if thank you letter was sent to donors, and Ifeanacho Okeke answered in the affirmative. Emma Nsoedo suggested we consider written off all the pledges that are not fulfilled. Bishop Anosike opined that the library account is designated for building the library and should not be touched for any other reason. Ifeanacho Okeke responded that the library account is the domiciliary account plus the $19000. He said that we placed Ibeto's donation in that account because we wanted to see the project done, and if we have need for the money we can use it. The motion for the adoption of the financial report was adopted.
JUSTICE UBEZUONU'S (RETIRED) ADDRESS:
Dr Ofomata introduced justice Ubezuonu (retired ) justice of court of appeal Nigeria.(agba Nnewi) who traveled all the way from Nigeria to grace our convention. He informed us that Igwe Nnewi is celebrating his 50th year on the thrown at the end of this year, and all road lead to Nnewi for that occasion. He said that he will request from Igwe that Nnu tulu nne be titled in Nnewi. He thanked NUSA for organizing ourselves as one. He prayed that God grant us unity in purpose. He said that it will be very good if we understand properly what they are doing back home in Nnewi. On the library project he extended a great thanks to Chief ZC Obi whom he continuously referred to as that great man of Nnewi who was the first chairman of the Igwe's royal cabinet, under whom he served as the secretary. It was at their watch as the Igwe's royal cabinet that both the library and Nkwo Nnewi was built. He will like us to know that some people from Nnewi at that time were against that purpose and sued them in court. The suit dragged on, and those that brought the suit lost, and Nkwo project was completed. He would like us to continue in that spirit of developing Nnewi, and they pledged their support to us. He said that he celebrated his 80th birthday two years ago, and introduced his book written when he was at the high court. He said that the price of the book is at the discretion of the purchaser, and half of the proceed from the books will be donated to NUSA. Senator Onyeabo Obi (Oso orji Nnewi) said thanked Justice Ubezuone for working tirelessly on behalf of Nnewi, and extended his gratitude for his devoted life services to our home town Nnewi. He also spoke in support of the book, and encouraged all of to us to at least get a copy.
AJULU UZODIKE (Ozi uzo Nnewi) CHAIRMAN NUSA BOARD OF TRUSTEE ADDRESS:
He said that the Governor of Anambra State Peter Obi wants to facilitate building a shopping plaza in Nkwo triangle. Nzuko Ora Nnewi wrote a letter to the Governor to make sure that Nkwo triangle continues to be used for afia-olu, and also a source of revenue for nzuko-ora. He said that they told us at the last convention about their plan in motion to find Nnewi person they will support to run for governorship of Anambra state. They sent out expression of interest form with deadline of April 30th 2013 for all interested candidates to respond, but only one candidate John Chuma Nwosu responded and he met all the criteria preset by the committee. They subsequently presented it to nzoko-ora Nnewi. but some people had the opinion that presenting him to nzoko-ora will cause confusion in the unity of Nnewi. They made some consultation with High stake holders, but for now the tempo on continuing the process is low, but it may be resurrected in the future. Elias Okonkwo questioned who will own the shopping center given the fact that Nkwo triangle is a public land?. The response by Ajulu Uzodike (Oziuzo Nnewi) is that the overwhelming interest is to make sure that the full benefit accrues to Nnewi.
SENATOR ONYEABO OBI (Osorji Nnewi) ADDRESS;
He thanked NUSA for been able to organize the convention, given the fact that at one point it was like it will not hold. He reminded us that the court can give judgment but cannot give peace or justice, and pleaded that we find a way to resolve the issue out of court. He thanked NUSA for having accurate and updated information on its website. Senator Onyeabo Obi said that Nnewi have been very peaceful since our last convention, and his advice to us is not to have wine carry outside our town. Nzuko Ora Nnewi had a very peaceful election, and they are preparing for Igwe's 50th Ofala at the end of the year. The date of Igwe's Ofala is usually on the 28th of December, but it will be extended this time. He appealed to all of us to come home and participate, and told us that Chief Chike Momah (Nnabuenyi Nnewi) and Chinelo Ejimbe (Enyi kwunazu Nnewi) will be the USA contact committee members for the occasion. He would like us to plan for death while alive, and encouraged us to have death benefits for the bereaved, and encouraged the elected executives to serve to the best of their ability with honesty. Nnabuenyi Nnewi asked if there is progress in site allocation of land for the proposed library? His answer was that the chairman of the Nzuko Ora transitional committee said that he will like to see the drawing of the proposed library, before he will show the land to NUSA. Senator Onyeabo also said that at the last time he made inquiry with the chairman he was informed that they have received the drawing, but are yet to act on it. He opined that NUSA, Nzuko Ora and the local government will need to work together on the library project, and it may be a situation where the government will build the library and NUSA can equip it. Chidi Metu questioned why it was agreed that the Library will be built at Nkwo Triangle, and later there was opposition not to site it at Nkwo triangle? Chief Ajulu Uzodike (ozi uzo nnewi) answered by saying that Igwe supported the project as part of beautification of Nnewi, but be it as it may, we should forget about building it at Nkwo triangle. Ajulu said that NUSA should work on having opinion on how to develop Nnewi, and there will be resources to make that happen according to Chief Cletus Ibeto. There was a question about Ifeanyi Uba plan to contest for the governorship of Anambra state, and Ajulu responded that he did not go through their selection process. Ebube Odunukwe asked if they have plan of working with which ever candidate that have potential of winning the Anambra Governorship election so that it will benefit Nnewi. Nnerika Okonkwo opined that NUSA only approved to build a library, but not at Nkwo triangle. Dr. Chris Ulasi moved for adjournment and was seconded by Ethel Momah and the meeting adjourned at 2120pm. Attendee's dismissed for dinner, and to prepare for the cultural night event.
DAY 3 : 7/6/2013 : Opening prayer was said by Reverend Daisy Obi. She thanked God for his presence with us, and that he continues to guide all our deliberations, so that it will be fruitful to our town Nnewi. The Assistant Secretary Chukwuezi Okeke gave a recap of day 1 to 2 events.
1115 am All attendees rose up for the entrance of Igwe' Nnewi and his entourage, Boston chapter presented kola nut to Igwe, and he blessed the kolanut and thanked God for bring us all together, and that we all return home safely and in good health.
ATLANTA CHAPTER REPORT: The report was give by Innocent Izundu (Enyi Nnewi). He informed us that their president travelled to Nigeria for a funeral, and designated him to give us the report, but unfortunately he missed his flight to Boston, and was to not able to make on time for the designated time for chapter reports in the convention agenda. He said that Atlanta chapter is doing great, they recently had a fund raising Nnewi Day, which Chief Chikason attended from Nigeria. They had picnic and end of the year party. Atlanta chapter belongs to all Igbo organizations in Atlanta, and they always give support to their brothers in need. They have a life insurance for all their members. They are taking very good care of their children who participate actively in meetings.
IGWE KENNETH ORIZU ADDRESS: Igwe said that he is very happy to be with us at this convention and thanked God for our been able to organize our self to be together annually. He said that Nnewi people in London started the same in our footsteps. According to Igwe Nnewi town is blessed by God but the persisting problem we continue to have is lack of Unity, although we were know in the past to be a well unified town. In the past we used to take our brothers into apprenticeship for 5-7 years, after which we settle them in business, and they often do better than their masters. Recently this has changed, and most of our successful business men, take people from other towns, rather than their kinsmen. He said that he is not happy that we are in court, because in the past our town Nnewi is known for how we usually settle issues outside courts, by following our customary dispute resolution process. The court legal dispute process cost a lot of money, and usually all party involved come out losers, because it does not bring lasting peace among brothers. It is always better to seek community mediation for disputes between brothers. He said that he is very proud of NUSA, and always speak highly of NUSA at home, and will not like us to disappoint him by continuing in this court dispute. He requested that we please mediate with each other out of court as Nnewi people used to do in the past. Igwe said that in the past his ancestors were all Obi of Nnewi, but at his own time some people wanted him to be Igwe Nnewi and not Obi Nnewi, which he graciously accepted, because he is the servant of the people. He said you can only rule with the support of the people. His mother died after three days of his birth, and his father died in 1962, and he took over to serve Nnewi. According to Igwe Nnewi people are like a cow you will never pull with iron chain, but you can pull with aforo ekwere, As a servant of the people you can only do want your people want, and sometimes that is contrary to your own wish. He was able to secure teaching hospital for Nnewi with 2 million Naira of Nnewi people money, although at that time some people were against that project and they had the opinion that Nnewi needed more industries than a college. Second in the list of his accomplishments was when Ojukwu suggested that Agbo-edo be developed as the nucleus (center) of Nnewi development, he consulted with the Obi's and all were in agreement. They requested 100 pounds, which Ojukwu provided to them, and when the initial amount was not enough, Ojukwu provided additional 50 pounds for the project. On the assigned date to clear the agbo-edo, various people showed up with their machetes ready for work, but work could not commence because of fear based on past superstitious belief of the people regarding agbo-edo. Everybody hanged around waiting on Igwe to be the trailblazer, and when he showed up, he took a cutlass and cut four times eke, orie, afo, nkwo, and everybody started cutting and cleared agbo-edo. They went to Umu-Uzodike and an agreement was reached that they will be given some stores and the rent will go to them as compensation. After the stores were built the government later took over the properties and they became a local government property. He said that his reign has not been very rosy, because Nnewi is Ogwu na aghigha. Igwe said that he approached Dr Ofomata when it became necessary that Nnewi will need a mortuary to protect the corps of its dead. and that was successful with the help of the government it was completed and furnished. The 1st water project located in Nnewi iche was no longer enough considering the growth of Nnewi town, and he initiated a 2nd water project in Otolo Nnewi near Nsoedo to help alleviate water shortage in Nnewi. According to Igwe some towns started to agitate about traditional rulers been directly in-charge of town developmental projects, and laws were passed to remove the traditional rulers involvement and place it under direct control of the town unions. Igwe also initiated the sitting of Teachers training college (TTC) in Nnewi which was successful and later it was used as a temporary site of the teaching hospital collage, while Mbuli was used as the temporary site of the teaching hospital. It is of note that you have to contribute to the developmental welfare of Nnewi before you can secure Nnewi title. Igwe said that he abolished Osu caste system in Nnewi in one of his Ofala., and appointed one of them to his cabinet. In closing,he said that you cannot rule Nnewi by force, but you can only serve, and do things by consensus of the people. He appealed that he is so proud of us, and requested that we please do not let him down, and prayed that God grant us peace.
Justice Ubezuonu's (agba Nnewi) remarks on Igwe's speech: He said that he is glad that Igwe went into details and that it will give us a true picture of situation in Nnewi. He was so much touched about the court litigation, and cannot understand why we will come to this country and start suing each other. He was appalled that a person from Nnewichi will do such a thing which is out of character for them. He jokingly said that it may not be as surprising if it was done by Otolo or Uruagu person. He said that Umudim and Nnewichi are the softest in Nnewi, and usually do not start trouble, and challenged Nnewichi people to help and remove the case from court. Justice Ubezuonu shaded more light on the account of Igwe's development of Nnewi, because he was the secretary under the leadership of Chief ZC Obi as the chairman during the Nkwo Nnewi development. He said that he has no store at Nkwo because the process was so transparent at that time, and you get a store by ballot allocation only. He credited the abolishion of the Osu cast system as he put it to a very great Nnewi son ZC Obi who was the pioneer that lead to it ultimately happening. He said that when ZC Obi brought up the idea, he was not in support, and told him to marry one, and then all will follow him.
The general house nominated 3 people to serve on the electoral committee, and they are as follows.
1. Dr Nwogu Agbasi
2. Anene Okeke
3. Ejike Aje
CHAPTER DELEGATES SEATED ARE:
ATLANTA INNOCENT IZUNDU AND UGO IZUNDU
BOSTON EKE OKEKE AND PETER MODEBELU
DALLAS ETHEL MOMAH AND IFY OFOMATA
HOUSTON DR.JULIA ANIGBOGU AND DR. CHRIS ULASI
CALIFORNIA CHIMELU MBELU AND UGONNA MBELU
NEW YORK TRISTATE ABSENT
AT LARGE ANGELA EZULIKE AND LEO OKOLI
CANDIDATES CONTESTING FOR EXECUTIVE POSITIONS
President : Mike Okeke
Vice-president : Dr Grace Anosike
Dr. Ikechukwu Ofomata
Secretary: Chukwuezi Okeke
Assistant Secretary: Alex Nweji
Public relation officer: Elias Okonkwo
Financial Secretary : Chinelo Ejimbe
Provost: Ifeyinwa Momah
Dr Agbasi (chairperson of electoral committee) thanked Nnewi people for the opportunity to serve them, and appealed for cooperation so that the election will be conducted in orderly manner. She thanked Igwe Nnewi for his presence, and all the Nnewi elders especially those that came all the way from Nigeria. Dr Agbasi thanked the outgoing NUSA officials for their dedicated service to the organization, and also gave great thanks to the almighty God that the process is going on peacefully, and hope that we can maintain the same attitude. She reminded all that election will come and go, and even the looser at this time may be the winner the next time. Congress Man Honorable Chris Azubogu representing Nnewi in the Nigerian federal house of assembly spoke in support of the electoral chairperson statement, and reminded us that they are watching from Nigeria for us to show them example of how elections should be conducted.He said that we should keep in mind that elections are not the end, but comes and goes and we all can serve even without been elected. Ruby Nnadi from Atalanta challenged the candidacy of Mike Okeke by saying that their local chapter Atlanta did not support his candidacy for the election. Nathan Momah responded by saying that anybody nominated on the floor is qualify to run for any position, and that Mike Okeke is eligible to run for the presidential position. Dr. Grace Anosike pulled out her candidacy from contesting for the office of the vice-president.
Dr Agbasi (charperson) called on all the candidates to briefly introduce themselves. Mike okeke Uruagu-- Atlanta chapter, Chidi Metu-- Uruaga Carlifornia chapter, Dr. Ofomata Umudim Dallas chapter, Chukwuezi Okeke Nnewichi Dallas chapter, Alex Nweji Umudim New York tristate chapter, Elias Okonkwo. Otolo, Dallas Chapter, Chinelo Ejimbe Umudim New York tristate chapter, Ifeyinwa Momah Umudim New York tristate chapter. Nnerika Okonkwo questioned if the electoral committee was appointed by the house and the resounding answer by the general body was yes. He said that New York tristate wrote a letter that they did not want to be at the convention, and he did not want election to be conducted, but rather a caretaker committee should be selected. The electoral committee handed each of the delegates seated a piece of paper to indicate their vote for the only position contested, which is the presidential position. The papers were collected back by the electoral committee from the delegates after they have indicated there vote on the ballot papers. The ballot papers were authenticated, and counted by the electoral committee. The result of the election was announced by the electoral chairperson Dr. Nwogo Agbasi as follows: For the office of NUSA president. Chidi Metu 100% (one hundred percent) delegates vote, and Mike Okeke 0% (zero percent) delegates vote. She announced Chid Metu as the winner of the presidential contest, and the rest of the people running for the other positions outside the presidential position as winners by unopposed. Angela Ezulike was nominated to fill the vacant position of the Assistant provost and she accepted. Mike Okeke gave a concessionary speech, which he started by inviting Chidi Metu to come to the floor and join him. He said that the only reason he contested was to try and bring all the inactive affiliates of NUSA back to the fold, and pleaded with Chidi to help and make that happen. He pledged his full support to help Chidi, in any way possible. He would like all of us to cease from discord and work as one large family for the progress of Nnewi. The house gave him a standing ovation and all present were very happy at his gesture. The president Elect Chidi Metu accepted the responsibility of leading NUSA bestowed on him with all humility. He thanked Mike Okeke for coming out to lead Nnewi and pledged his support to work with him. He said that he would like all that have any opinion on what could bring progress to Nnewi to please voice them, and apologized to all that he may have offended, and at the same token he said he has forgiven those that have offended him. He will like all Nnewi people to join hand with his executives for the progress of Nnewi. He thanked all that contributed towards the
success of the convention. The Electoral committee swore in the newly elected executive body, and handed a sealed envelope containing the election materials to the Secretary Chukwuezi Okeke for the record. Igwe and the newly elected officers took a group picture. Meeting adjourned for lunch.
KEY NOTE SPEECH
DR. SUNDAY ILECHUKWU
Professor of psychiatry. His keynote speech was on delivering solutions to promote health wellness, awareness and prevention. He defined good health as a state of (well-being). Nigeria is ranked as the happiest place on earth by the new-scientist 2003. Another survey in 2010 placed Nigeria at #23. Life expectancy in Nigeria is within 50-55 years of age. Nigerian overall ranking globally in wellness is 187th . Ten percent of women still die during child birth. He said that our efforts should be on disease prevention rather than diagnosis and cure. Small pox has been eradicated through vaccination according to who (world health organization) Current statistics showed that Nigerians in diaspora remitted $21 billion to Nigeria in 2012, and he opined that if that is multiplied by a factor of 10 that will yield 50% of Nigerian GDP (gross domestic product ), and if that amount is harnessed and channeled into Nigerian healthcare it will go a long way to alleviate the challenges we have in healthcare. He mentioned 100 Igbo model program: which is an organization that is 501c through which people in diaspora can make investments in Nigeria. He said that currently they have a mobile surgical center, which can be rented for surgery. Dr Ilechukwu suggested we all invest in providing medical information to our people back home, which he said will be more beneficial to them, than going home to drop medical supplies which are not coordinated or sustaining. He proposed four area of infrastructural development NUSA can pursue that will help to promote good health.
1. Nnewi public Library.
2. Nnewi FM radio
3. NUSA liaison with the state house of representatives and other government institutions
4. NUSA hire a full time health liaison officer.
He proposed a blueprint for Nnewi health improvement that consists of the following:
1. Organization of health care mission committee to be headed by a physician or nurse administrator, but should consist of mostly non health professionals.
2. Generate a healthcare education curriculum and manual that is based on successful models.
3. Design a manual for education of all potential health educators.
4. Total mobilization and training of all active NUSA members and deployment during home coming.
5. Penetrate to the village level.
6. Conduct before and after training testing.
7. Education should be based strictly on the designed manual.
Please see attached, excerpts from his keynote speech
Honorable Chukwudi Orizu (Deputy Speaker Anambra state) He thanked NUSA for extending him the invitation to honor our 18th annual convention, and enumerated various things he has done since elected, to help in the development of Nnewi. He has helped facilitate award of contracts of various Nnewi roads both at the state and federal level. He has also contributed in many ways as a private individual. He would like us to try and help by attracting investments to Nnewi that will help employ our growing youth population. Below is his speech.
The National President NUSA,
The Executive Members of NUSA,
All members of this Honourable Association,
All the invited Colleagues,
Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I salute you all;
It gives me great pleasure to find my very humble self in your midst today and at this occasion, not only as an invited Guest; but as a SPECIAL GUEST at this very 18th Annual National Convention taking place here in Boston, Massachusetts.
This August Body it would be recalled, was formed in 1996 here in the United States and had since been drawing the admirations, respects and emulations from all people of Africa. United States had been a country of great minds and most especially of African descends – the Marcus Garveys, the Martin Luther King Juniors and also of our own sons the Nnodu Okongwus, Nnamdi Azikiwes, the Mbonu Ojikes – ‘Boycut King’ and the Nwafor Orizus.
It’s no wonder then, that the seeds of revolutions and transformations in Africa are often sown and nurtured here in the United States and then transferred across the Atlantic to Africa; and that the NUSA members at that time took up that decision is simply stating the obvious – history repeating itself.
What has been said thus far concerning the struggle of a people to free their fatherland from the shackles of Colonialism, and what is happening here, is the “determination of Nnewians in the United States to free and liberate our people from the stronghold of ignorance, hunger and disease so that our minds will be emancipated from indolence, and siege mentality.
Forever thinking in that very direction, I doff my hat and do hereby express my gratitude to you all.
a. The NUSA Visit to Nnewi in 2007
It will be recalled that in 2007, the NUSA members held its first convention in Nnewi – a visit that did register far-reaching impression in the minds of the people of Nnewi up to this very moment. During that time, a team of Medical Experts were brought in who administered free medical treatments and drugs at designated centers in the town; by that very gesture, you demonstrated in practical terms what had been bugging the minds of many – when will our sons and daughters in the Diaspora think of the poor and the needy at home?
Your organization did it and had ever since been undertaking other innovative projects like renovation of schools and sending of books to schools. NUSA is also playing a major role in the development of a central Library in Nnewi as its own efforts to rid Nnewi of the old make-belief concept that the people of Nnewi are mostly spare parts dealers and Artisans.
It will be pertinent at this juncture to inform you, that the proposed Nnewi Museum project, had been launched and your positive inputs towards that, would be most welcomed.
b. Life In Nnewi As It Is Today
I stand up today to assure you that life in Nnewi has turned out to be something better than what it had been over the years; because God has in His infinite mercy, given us an enterprising Governor, who values protection of lives and properties as his priority in the scheme of things.
Law and order have now been maintained in the strict sense of the word, not only in Nnewi, but throughout the state as a whole; and people are now going about their normal businesses in relative peace and tranquility.
In Nnewi, people now sleep and slumber with their eyes fully closed; in other areas, Nnewi is undergoing unprecedented transformations especially with particular reference to road constructions and refurbishment of schools; and all these are being made possible because of some unforeseen forces are pressing the buttons somewhere. Even the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan had paid several unscheduled visits to Nnewi – why? Because of the interest he had developed in the town and its people due to their ingenuities and business acumen.
It might interest you to know, that His Royal Highness Igwe K.O.N. Orizu III CON, will be celebrating his 50th year on the Throne this year and it would be mostly appreciated if this honourable body that had made Nnewi proud; be represented most conspicuously at that occasion.
c. My Contributions so far towards the development of our Town since my Election into the House of Assembly;
I am quite aware that the main object of this special invitation is to hear from me, what actually I had been doing for the town since my election into the State House of Assembly and especially as the number two man in that House.
Yes, there is no gain-saying the fact that I had been doing my very best within the ambits of the law in an answer to your question, a lot has been done for the town, by myself in my personal capacity as a legislator representing the town.
I had built a school block with the principals’ office at saint Christopher’s Primary school – Ndiakwu Otolo, Nnewi and also hope to do the same in other three quarters, starting presently with that of Uruagu, which is ongoing; I have installed a Palm Oil Processing Mill at Obiuno; I have also empowered people to self reliance by sending and paying for their trainings in various fields of trade, that is to say about 50 jobless youths are currently enjoying the benefits of that scheme.
I have also provided about 120 people with various enabling tools and equipments to earn a living such as Grinding Machines, Sewing Machines, Welding Machines, and Barbing Salon Kits with generating sets, Hair Dressing Salon equipments with Generating sets also; as well as vulcanizing machines with their accessories to Artisans.
I have not only been facilitating the employment of our young job seekers in the state’s civil service, but has been liaising with my colleague at the federal level to ensure that what really are ours; are not denied us. Hon. Chris Azubogu has been helping our youths to secure meaningful employments at the federal civil service, companies and parastatals.
I have been undertaking measure to ensure that our people are not unjustly victimized in the course of their service to the state and those who suffered such fates are given instant justice.
I have been carrying out such humanitarian assignments as periodic monthly visits to the indigent and old people of Nnewi origin – since my assumption of office, in the State House of Assembly.
I do regularly visit the sick at the Nnewi Teaching Hospital and other Hospitals in Nnewi, I visit the widows and the orphanage cottage center whenever I undertake such tours, and had sponsored the holding of a seminar for Mathematics Teachers in Nnewi, amongst others.
d. Other Attractions
Besides; I have influenced the award and flagging off of about twenty four Roads in Nnewi, since my assumption of office amongst which are: -
i. The Igwe Orizu Road;
ii. The Bank Road,
iii. The Hundred Foot Road,
iv. The Nnewi-Utuh Road,
v. Nnewi-Oba Road,
vi. Nnewi-Nnobi Road,
vii. Edo-Ezemewi Road,
viii. Akwudo, Enem,Awka-Etiti Road, etc
as well as the award for immediate construction of a shopping complex at the Nnewi Triangle.
All these are possible because of an understandable working relationship one maintains with the chief Executive of the State, as well a good rapport one keeps with his colleague at the federal level.
It will be pertinent to mention here that the President in one of his scheduled visits had promised to construct a thermal power sub-station in Nnewi to solve the ever persistent epileptic power supply in the town and its environs. Such, if completed would certainly not only boost the industrialization drive of the town, but will make the town the real Japan of Africa it had been so called.
A visit therefore to the President by this Association at Aso Rock, now that he is in power, will further project Nnewi in his scheme of things.
Finally, I would like to observe that your exemplary qualities has endeared and energized me to strive to attain the height I now find myself and would enjoin you to keep the flag flying higher than ever before.
It would also be very much cherished, if this very honourable body would in its scheme of things, plan of establishing real industries which will lure many other organizations of its kind in other parts of the world to come home and establish their presence; and thus enhance employment opportunities to the ever increasing population of our youths.
Nnewi is on the move and its people in the United States had lit up the candle. Let the light illuminate, shine and brighten the entire compass of Nnewi. Thank you and may God ever bless your enterprises.
Honorable Chris Azubogu.(Member Nigerian House of Representatives)
He represents Nnewi and its environs at the federal House of Representatives in Abuja, Nigeria. He thanked NUSA for extending the invitation to him. He narrated so many things he has been doing since he was elected to represent Nnewi at the Federal level. He has helped to attract the dividends of democracy to Nnewi north, south and ekwusigo constituency which he represents. “His Mission statement is to facilitate infrastructure development through vibrant legislation for the benefit of his constituency in the area of power, health
and road infrastructure development. And to lobby for policies that will create sustainable developments, enhance good governance and facilitate the delivery of democratic dividend for the good people of his constituency”. See attached copy of his written speech.
Justice Ubezuonu (Agba Nnewi)
Congratulated Hon. Chris Azubogu for his efforts in working for the development of Nnewi in the Federal House. Senator Onyabo Obi (Osoorji Nnewi) thanked the legislators for their efforts to help and develop Nnewi. He reminded us that they do not have the power to award contracts, but that they can help to facilitate its success. Osoorji Nnewi will like us to come back, and make a difference in the lives of our people, and thanked NUSA for providing this forum for interaction. He requested that the legislators provide their contact e-mail address to the convention attendees. The e-mail address of Hon Chris Azubogu is Honchrisazubogu@gmail. , and that of Hon Chukwudi Orizu is email@example.com
Onyedikachukwu Momah reported that his vision is to see our children passionate on what we their parents are doing, and he questioned why the youths are not much involved. He opined that because of this when they reach of age to make a choice, they will choose not to be involved. Elias Okonkwo commented that we agreed in Dallas convention that two of the executive’s position will be reserved for the youths. Dr Chris Ulasi asked if we can agree to make youth Director a member of the executive body at this point. Motion was sought from the house regarding this and Dr. Chris Ulasi moved a motion supported by Chiagom Iwudo to make the position of youth director part of NUSA executive body. Bishop Anosike questioned if that can be done without constitutional amendment. The result of the vote was unanimous in favor and none was against the motion. Hence the position of youth director was adopted as part of the NUSA Executive body. Onyedikachukwu Momah was nominated for the position of youth director, and all were in favor, and non against. He accepted to serve as the youth Director.
ADJORNMENT: Dr. Grace Anosike moved for adornment and was supported by Emma Obierika, and the meeting adjourned at 1830 pm. Members dispersed to get ready for the gala night.
Recorded by Chukwuezi Okeke
SIGNED: Nathan C Momah- Chukwuezi Okeke
Message from the National President
at the 18th NUSA Convention
Nathan C. Momah PE.
I have the singular honor and the privilege to welcome all of you to the 18th annual convention of Nnewi USA (NUSA) in Boston, Massachusetts. All glory to the Almighty God for making it possible for me to be here with all of you at yet another convention. This journey would not have been possible without your consistent support and sacrifice.
On behalf of our association, I humbly salute and welcome Igwe Nnewi, His Royal Highness Igwe Kenneth Orizu III and his wife, Lady Catherine Orizu to this year’s convention and thank them for honoring our special invitation.I congratulate you on the 50th anniversary of your ascension to the throne of igwe of Nnewi. Your long reign has been a blessing to our people.
By the same token my profound gratitude goes to the Obi of Uruagu,Chief Nnamdi Obi,the Obi of Umudim,Chief Bennet Okafor and the Obi of Nnewichi,Chief George Onyekaba for their progressive leadership and foresight.
It is my immense pleasure to welcome our keynote speakers,Drs Sunday Ilechukwu,MD and Ndubeze Okonkwo,MD to our convention. May I also recognize and welcome to our convention,Chief Ajulu Uzodike(Oziuzo Nnewi), Chairman of Board of Trustees,NUSA,Senator Onyeabo Obi (Ose Oji,Nnewi,Prince Chukwudi Orizu,Deputy Speaker,Anambra State of Assembly,Justice E.C Ubezuonu(Agba,Nnewi),retired Judge of Nigerian Federal Court of Appeal and Chief Chike Momah,(Nnabuenyi,Nnewi)
My special thanks reach out to our brothers and sisters of Boston Chapter, NPUM for the hard work and diligence they demonstrated in hosting this convention.We know that behind every successful event there are individuals whose efforts must not go unmentioned.Therefore it is my duty to recognize the effective leadership of the president of Boston Chapter,Mr Chikezie Ajene, the National Convention Committee Chairman, Dr Ikechukwu Ofomata and the Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee, Chief Eke Okeke.
NUSA was founded in 1996 and was registered as a not for profit entity in 1997.The main objective was to create a forum through which Nnewi people resident in USA could crystallize and exchange ideas that will improve our communities both here in USA and in Nnewi our home town. There have been challenges and successes recorded during my tenure as the president of this association as is the case with similar positions. The achievements would not have been possible without the support and tenacity of my executive council, chapter presidents and chapter delegates.
Upon assuming office in 2008, we embarked on a peace mission to reconcile the crises in two NUSA chapters of Dallas and Chicago. Pursuant to this goal, a committee led by me comprising of the then Vice President,Mr Chidi Metuh,Esq and the Provost,Mr Leo Okoli visited and met with the two Dallas factions. The seed of reconciliation sown by this visit eventually germinated into lasting peace through the efforts at the Houston Convention in 2010 by Chiefs Goddy Agbasi(Enyi,nkwum n’azu Nnewi),JCJ Ikejiuba(Oranyelugo,Nnewi),Noble Uchendu and Fabian Okeke and the indefatigable ,Dame Unoaku Ekwegbalu.
It is not far fetched to posit that this sustainable peace in Dallas was evidenced in no small measure by their successful hosting of the NUSA convention last year.
The Chicago crisis was also settled during my tenure as the president.The peace currently enjoyed by the Chicago branch was brokered by no other person than Dame Unoaku Ekwegbalu. Please join me again in thanking her for this feat.
During my tenure as the president we successfully completed the second Nnewi medical mission in 2011 under the able leadership of Dr Ndubeze Okonkwo.The team was made up of outstanding volunteer medical professionals drawn from various medical specialties based in Canada and USA augmented with a home team of very skilled medical experts.The home team was assembled under the leadership of Dr Douglas Nkemdilim,the medical director of Akwudo Anglican Diocesean hospital,Nnewi and the new chairman of Nzuko Ora Nnewi.
As part of my executive’s agenda to improve health care delivery in our home town we transported to Akwudo Hospital the electric beds donated by Capitol View Transitional Care Hospital, St Paul Minnesota. An Xray machine was also taken delivery of and transported to our home town.
One of the challenges faced during my leadership was the execution of the Nnewi Public library project. Nonetheless, we consolidated our effort and generated funds towards making the Nnewi Public library project a reality.This project which would have commenced soon after the Nnewi Public library ground breaking ceremony was derailed due to circumstances beyond our immediate control. Intensive negotiations are underway with the assistance of the current Chairman of Nzuko Ora Nnewi,Dr Douglas Nkemdilim to secure a suitable site for the library. However, it is my fervent belief that the incoming executive council will bring this project to fruition.
We succeeded in amending our old constitution thereby enhancing member participation in the election of NUSA executive officers. Additionally, the amended constitution made it easier for NUSA chapters to successfully host conventions without the unnecessary financial encumbrance imposed on them in the past.
Our website has been refurbished and now meets the standards expected from an organization of our caliber. It has received more visitors than ever before and contains relevant information about the organization as well as links to websites of branch affiliates and Nnewi entities. Members and their branches are now able to make secured payments through paypal system and with credit cards.The data base is replete with past convention minutes and names of members from different NUSA chapters.
We played an active role in supporting different NUSA Chapters and various Igbo cultural organizations commemorating the life and death of our departed brother Ikemba Nnewi,Chief Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu.The plaque awarded to Ikemba’s wife ,Ambassador Bianca Ojukwu was well received by her.
My brothers and sisters, my tenure as your President ends at this convention. I am very grateful for the opportunity you gave me to serve you. I thank all the members that have worked with me, especially the members of my executive council, Chapter Presidents, House of delegates, members of Ad Hoc committees and the members of the Board of Trustees under the chairmanship of Chief Dr. Ajulu Uzodike (Oziuzo Nnewi). I thank our good friends at home,Mr Reuben Okongwu, Mr Ugochukwu Uzodike and Mr Emeka Anyadiegwu all of whom have always represented our varying interests at home.
Finally, I thank my wife and children without whose support, patience and advice my presidency would not have been successful.
I implore you to enjoy the company of one another while you show love and kindness to all but also to take time to think of these quotes:
“No power in society, no hardship in your condition can depress you, keep you down, in knowledge, power, virtue, influence but by your own consent”-William Ellery Channing.
“The need to be right all the time is the biggest bar to new ideas. It is better to have enough ideas for some of them to be wrong than to be always right by having no ideas at all”- Edward de Bono
Long live United States of America, Long live Nigeria, Long live Nnewi
Long live Nnewi USA (NUSA).
Thank you and God bless.
Nathan C. Momah