Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour Party for the 2023 elections, honored the memory of Professor Okechukwu Mbonu, a distinguished figure in the field of Medicine, at his funeral held on February 9, 2024.
In a heartfelt tribute, Obi hailed Professor Mbonu as an exceptional Nigerian, highlighting his remarkable contributions to academia and his legendary status as a scholar. He emphasized that while Professor Mbonu’s extensive list of academic achievements and accolades only scratched the surface of his greatness, his impact extended far beyond the confines of his profession.
Obi reminisced about the pivotal role Professor Mbonu played during his tenure as governor, particularly in a challenging moment when the Nigerian Medical and Dental Council threatened to shut down the state-owned university’s faculty of medicine due to the absence of a functioning teaching hospital. Recognizing the potential consequences for the students, Obi passionately pleaded with the Council to grant them a two-year window to construct a teaching hospital.
Initially met with skepticism and resistance, Obi persisted in his efforts, eventually convincing the Council to consider their proposal. Against all odds, they successfully built the Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital Amaku, Awka within the stipulated timeframe of two years. Professor Mbonu, alongside other esteemed professors, played a pivotal role in this endeavor, displaying unwavering dedication and expertise.
Obi lauded Professor Mbonu’s selflessness, commitment, and the respect he commanded within the medical community. He emphasized that Professor Mbonu’s legacy would endure for generations, as his efforts resulted in the training of numerous doctors who continue to make significant contributions to society.
In conclusion, Peter Obi paid homage to Professor Okechukwu Mbonu, acknowledging his profound impact on the medical field and the countless lives he touched throughout his illustrious career.