Governor Chukwuma Soludo of Anambra State has decided to rename the state’s International Passenger and Cargo Airport in honour of the late Prof. Chinua Achebe, a renowned novelist. This renaming is a tribute to Achebe’s enduring contributions to Nigeria.
During the Independence Day parade in Awka on Sunday, Charles Soludo made this announcement, paying tribute to Achebe as a shining, but unsung hero of Africa.
Soludo expressed his delight at the fact that many of the contributors to Nigeria’s 1960 independence now have projects named after them, which he found heartwarming.
He, however, noted that almost all the projects were named after public officeholders, saying his government would break away from the norm to recognize Achebe by naming the Anambra Airport after him.
“We must signal that you don’t have to hold political positions to contribute to the advancement of our civilization.
“Henceforth, we shall be deliberate in fishing out and celebrating our largely unsung heroes, as motivation to our children and youths in terms of what matters, including distinguished teachers, medical and other professionals, persons of honesty and integrity, philanthropists with known sources of wealth, entrepreneurs/job creators, community leaders/developers, clergy with great devotion, etc.
“An example of Africa’s unsung hero is the late Professor Albert Chinualumogu Achebe.
“Achebe was not a President or Governor or Minister. He did not build bridges, roads or airports. But he will outlive most presidents, governors or ministers.
“Achebe gave African literature an identity and a voice. In a way, he rightly reconstructed and redefined who we are and we will never forget. Indeed, he was not an Anambra hero, nor a Nigerian hero. He was an African and global hero, and yet largely unsung at home.
“Consequently, we will rename the Anambra International Cargo and Passenger Airport, Umueri, to CHINUA ACHEBE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, UMUERI. Yes, it has to be an international airport, and we hope to work with the Federal Government to give full effect to its international status,” Soludo said.
What You should Know
Prof. Chinua Achebe was a Nigerian novelist and political commentator whose debut novel, Things Fall Apart is regarded as the most widely read fictional book from the West Africa continent.
Achebe a native of Ogidi in Idemili North Local Government Area, Anambra State, died on March 21, 2013, at age 82, in Boston, Massachusetts.
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I am a journalist and a political and socioeconomic analyst currently employed at Nairametrics. I pride myself on being a skilled wordsmith with a passion for delving into contemporary political issues on both a national and international scale. Additionally, I contribute research-based columns and op-eds to national publications.
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