Former governor of Anambra State Peter Obi has felicitated with the former Commonwealth secretary-general Emeka Anyaoku who clocked 89 on Tuesday.
Mr Obi also hailed the elder statesman for his great fatherly role in Anambra and his think-home philosophy.
In a congratulatory message issued and signed by Obi’s media officer Valentine Obienyem on Wednesday, the ex-governor described Anyaoku as an exemplary ambassador of Nigeria and Anambra on the global stage.
He said that Anyaoku has continued to contribute to the peace and development of Nigeria, and indeed Anambra, his home state.
Obi explained that while he lived in the United Kingdom, in the 90s, he always felt proud, as an Igbo man, with Anyaoku’s contributions to the Commonwealth of Nations.
“I recall that it was in 1997, during Chief Emeka Anyaoku’s tenure, at the Edinburgh Conference, that the Commonwealth Business Council (CBC), of which I was an early member, was formed.
“As a body saddled with the responsibility of enhancing trades and mobilising investments among member nations of the Commonwealth, the CBC played an active role in the economic development of member nations.
“Being an early member of the Council afforded me the opportunity of participating in their conferences in Malaysia, Mauritius, India, Australia, Malta, South Africa, etc,” he said.
The former governor also recalled that he spoke at different Commonwealth events, especially the ones held in Nigeria and the United Kingdom.
Obi said that in 2013, as the then governor of Anambra, he was a special guest at Anyaoku’s 80th birthday, hosted by the then secretary-general, Kamalesh Sharma, at the Commonwealth headquarters.
“Also as the then chairman of southeastern governors, I co-hosted the 80th birthday celebration of Chief Anyaoku at Obosi.
“The Obosi event had in attendance; all the then southeastern governors; former governor of Lagos State, Senator Bola Tinubu, and many other dignitaries from across the country and beyond,” he noted.