By Gid Ahanonu
The new Chairman of the Elders’ forum, Umuonyeche village, in the Owerri Municipal Council Area, Imo State, Hon Samuel Oparaku, has promised to do his best in the position given him.
He, therefore, called for the support of the people whom he asked to be regular at meetings.
Chief Oparaku was speaking at the inauguration of the new executive last Sunday.
He identified unemployment as a major cause of youth restiveness in the community and pledged to tackle the problem with the cooperation of parents.
The new helmsman explained that the forum was the political arm of the village, quite different from the village heads who represent the social arm.
While thanking the people for choosing him, he said that he would either succeed or resign.
Speaking at the occasion, the immediate past president of the Owerri Community Assembly (OCA) Chief (Dr.) Christian Oweaya Anukam, lauded the choice of Hon Oparaku, recalling his achievements as secretary of OCA in 2005 to including fostering peace between the area and government as well as facilitating land allocation to members of the community.
Chief Anukam, Agbawo-Dike –Izu Owerri, donated 20 plastic chairs to the forum.
Also speaking, one of the elders, Chief Hon. Herbert Mere, extolled Chief Anukam for his contributions to the society and urged him to continue.
In his valedictory speech, the outgoing secretary of the interim administration of the forum, Comrade Christian Nze, thanked Chief Tony Operaku for holding forth as the first interim Chairman and for organsing a successful election.
He also thanked Chief Herbert Mere for his benevolence to the forum. Those sworn-in by the forum’s legal adviser, Barr. Egonu Mere, were Hon Samuel Oparaku, Chairman, Prince Chibuzo Mere, Vice Chairman, Chief Sylvester Chukwu, Secretary, and Elder Emeka Onwuemenyi, financial secretary.
Others were Elder Ambrose Anozie, treasurer, Elder Cheta Amadioha, Provost Elder Ezenna Oparaugo, PRO and Elder Chibikodo Ejelonu, social organizer.