Message By His Majesty, Nnaemeka Alfred Ugochukwu Achebe, CFR, mni, Obi of Onitsha, Agbogidi, at the 2023 Ofala, Saturday, October 14, 2023
As always, we shall begin with gratitude to God Almighty that we are witnessing another Ofala festival, the 22nd during my reign on the throne of Ezechima, our founding father. Last year was our first normal celebration following a two-year hiatus caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. In my address on that occasion, I covered a wide range of events and issues over the twenty years that I had been on the throne – our modest achievements, our failures, or things we could have done better, and several others that remained as work in progress.
The Evolution of the Ofala:
The Ofala has grown steadily over the years in terms of its scope, social glamour, and intrinsic meaning for us, Ndi Onicha. An international visual arts exhibition, a youths’ carnival, an internationally accredited marathon, a post-Ofala banquet, and a Church thanksgiving service have enhanced the content and attractiveness of the Ofala over the years. This year, a lecture series, named Obi Nnaemeka Achebe Annual Lecture on Public Relations, was added under the joint auspices of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations and Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University to further enrich the festival. I am most grateful to my particularly good friend, His Lordship, Bishop Felix Femi Ajakaye, of the Catholic Diocese of Ekiti for expertly delivering the maiden lecture to a large audience on 05 October 2023.
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