By Izunna Okafor and Odogwu Emeka Odogwu


The traditional ruler of Ukpo, and clan head of Ukpo-Dunukofia ancient kingdom, in Dunukofia local Government Area, Igwe Dr Robert Chukwudilim Eze, Okofia VI has reiterated the indispensable roles of women and church in championing overall societal development.

Igwe Eze who lauded the roles of women in not only building the church building, but also in championing of all forms of development in the society, spoke when he received the delegation of 34th Awka Diocesan Women’s Conference (ADWOC) 2020 led by the President, Mother’s Union, Women Wing and Girls Guild, Province on the Niger and Diocese of Awka, Mrs Martha Chioma Ibezim (Nneoma) at his palace.

Mrs Ibezim (JP) and the ADWOC delegates were led to the palace of Igwe Eze by His Grace, The Most Reverend Alexander Chibuzo Ibezim, PhD, the Archbishop, Ecclesiastical Province of the Niger and Bishop, Diocese of Awka alongside his archdeacons and clergymen.He invariably advocated for respect and love for men of God no matter the societal situation, as their spiritual roles are indispensable in the society.

Igwe Ukpo commended the strides of the wife of the Archbishop of the Province of the Niger, Mrs Ibezim particularly on her management of administration of Queen’s Covent Awka which he noted is the best school in Anambra as four children from his palace are in the school, urging her not to relent.

He reassured the Archbishop that the ADWOC 2020 will be a success in Ukpo and commmeded the Local Organising Committee led by Group Capt. Sir Benson Okoye, Ochiagha n’Ukpo and the Vicar Rev Ikeh Sunday Kelechi and wife Mrs Esther Ike for a successful preparation for the ADWOC 2020.Praying for Ukpo Archdeaconry, Ukpo Community and Igwe Dr Eze, the Archbishop Alexander Chibuzo Ibezim asked God to grant the Community peace and Igwe Dr Eze long life and health on the throne, even as he asked for support to constituted authority by citizenry.

Later at the conference venue —All Saints’ Parish Ukpo —Archbishop Ibezim laid the foundation stone and dedicated an ultra modern storey building as Church Hall, built and donated by Mr and Mrs Samuel Okeke (Muo Nso).Appreciating Mr and Mrs Okeke, for donating the Church Hall, Archbishop Ibezim noted that the five-day conference was reduced to three days due to COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the world, reminding the congregation of the need to ensure full adherence to COVID-19 protocols.

In her speech, Mrs Ibezim encouraged archdeacons' wives who are vice presidents to motivate other clergies' wives to ensure they mobilize other women to develop the habit of house to house evangelism, so as to win more souls for Jesus Christ.

Praising God in front of the altar while Archbishop Ibezim and other clergy joined inside the altar, Mrs Ibezim also announced the establishment of Young Wives Fellowship in the diocese, in order to enhance better understanding of the challenges Anglican Young Wives pass through and devise the best ways to assist them to overcome the challenges.She encouraged and advocated taking care of widows and young girls in the diocese and province in all ramifications, as well as hosting conferences for them, in order to nurture them better for the kingdom race.She thanked Archbishop Ibezim for the support for Queen’s Covent Awka and the women for their solidarity always, asking God for blessings upon all women of the diocese of Awka.

She encouraged women not to relent in reaching out to give a helping hand to the poor and the needy in the society without minding their race, creed or colour as there is enough suffering and pain in the society. 

Earlier in his sermon, the Archdeacon, Ukpo Archdeaconry, Ven Shalom Ginika encouraged women not to relent in their service to mankind and leave their battle to God as only Him shall fight for them; while the Vicar, All Saints Parish Ukpo, Rev Ikeh Sunday Kelechi thanked God for a successful outing on the first day of the conference even as he thanked Archbishop Ibezim and his wife, for the opportunity to host the conference. 

Lady Chizoba Chiebonam Nwana , Ochiliozuo and Ada-Ukwu Aro is the Chairperson 2020 ADWOC.In an interview with newsmen, Dame Chika Osinaomumu, Protocol and Publicity Unit Coordinator in Awka Diocese described the theme, "Be Still and Know that I Am God; I Will Be Exalted Among the Nations , I Will Be Exalted In The Earth” (Psalm 46:10), as apt; while the Chaplain, Mothers Union, Rev Canon Dave Ohamara thanked God for granting the women a successful conference, and prayed for a fruitful outing.Highlight included presentation of conference trophy, prize giving, recognition of conference babies and intercessory prayers, among others.

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