The immediate past Traditional Ruler of Aro Kingdom and custodian of its heritage, His Majesty, Mazi Ogbonnaya Okoro, also known as Eze Aro of Arochukwu, will be buried on Monday, April 5.
The Chairman of Aro National Rites of Passage Committee, Prof. Okoro Ijoma, in a statement after a virtual meeting on the funeral arrangement revealed that the burial rites of the late traditional ruler would be an opportunity to celebrate his legacies.
“We are mourning in one form, and in another form, we are celebrating him and Arochukwu, which he represented and still represents.
“During the reign of 25 years, he was a shining light in many ways and Arochukwu has a lot to show for it.”
Ijoma while commending the late King for using his influence positively for the development of Arochukwu during his reign, described him as a leader who used every opportunity to lobby for the welfare of his immediate community.
“Throughout his reign, he made contacts to reach Abuja and all government officials that he came across, on how to improve the quality of road network of Aro.
“Under him, an imposing civic center was completed for you to know that Mazi was a great ruler and the event of next week is to celebrate him, Aro and what traditional ruler in Aro stands for,” he said.
Before ascending the throne, Mazi Ogbonnaya Okoro, who trained in the United Kingdom as a Medical Laboratory Scientist, was pioneer head of Department of Laboratory Technology at the University of Nigeria Teaching hospital (UNTH), Enugu.
He retired as the Chief Medical Laboratory Scientist at the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN) in 1988 to ascend the throne.
Eze Ogbonnaya Okoro ascended the famous Eze Aro throne in 1995 and his reign witnessed tremendous transformation of the Kingdom and growth in inter-communal relations.
Among other positions, Eze Ogbonnaya Okoro was a first-class traditional ruler and occupied one of the ancient traditional stools in Nigeria and was the custodian of the Aro heritage worldwide.
His burial is expected to climax a week-long passage of rites for him which kicks off on April 2.
The climax of the funeral rites would be held on April 5, at the Arochukwu Civic and Cultural Center, Oror, Arochukwu by 10 a.m. (NAN)