Indigenes of the state, who gathered at the Women’s Development Centre, Awka to pay tribute to the Amazon described her in various glowing superlatives, each recalling their experience with her.
The Anambra State governor, Chief Willie Obiano told the audience that he had concluded arrangement to name Prof Dora Akunyili as the State’s Ambassador Plenipotentiary before her death.
This idea, he said, was conceived because of the good representation the state had received from her, with the hope that she would use the position to boost the state positively.
Obiano said that the death of Akunyili was a loss to the entire Anambra people and Nigerians at large, and that her absence would be felt for a long while.
Former Head of State, Gen Yakubu Gowon said Akunyili, despite her busy schedule, was a good wife to her husband, and called on the family to have courage as their mother, Akunyili lived a good life and also impacted in the entire country.
It was, however, a time of emotion as the husband of the late Akunyili, Dr Chikle Akunyili mounted the podium to recount some memorable times he had with his late wife.
Chike recounted how his wife had so much faith in Nigeria to the point of insisting on being in the National Conference, despite her failing health, and how she had during her days as the Minister of Information and Communication flung a green card at US Embassy officials, deciding to keep her Nigerian Diplomatic passport.
“I remember when she was running for the senate, in our community, she had over 10,000 votes, and some ballot papers were remaining, and when APGA people came to her and said they wanted to thumbprint on the left over papers, she effused and said ‘what will I tell my God’.
“She was forthright to the point of death, and for those who think that she is a hater of the Igbos, I can only say sorry to them. She is one person who believes in doing things right, to the point that she even sacked my immediate younger brother from NAFDAC during her days”.
Dora’s remains will on Thursday be interred in her husband’s hometown in Agulu, Anaocha Local Government of Anambra State.
Dailypost reports that as the corpse arrived the Women Development Centre Venue, fans of the former NAFDAC DG defied an instruction that all guests must be tested of the Ebola Virus before gaining access to the hall.
They all surged forward into the hall.