Rev. Fr. Prof. Obiefuna Retires From Active Service, Praises God For Seeing Him Through

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It was a reception of who is who in the society at the Valedictory Lecture and Festschrift Presentation of Rev. Fr. Prof. Boniface Anthony Chijioke Obiefuna as he bows out of the service of Nnamdi Azikiwe University on completion of the mandatory age of 70.

The double event held at the UNIZIK Main Auditorium was chaired by the Vice-Chancellor of Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka Prof. Charles Okechukwu Esimone.

A roll call of important dignitaries at the event include: the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev. Paulinus Ezeokafor; the Anglican Bishop of Isiala Ngwa Diocese, Rt. Rev. Temple Nwaogu; the Methodist Bishop of Awka Diocese, Rt. Rev. Onyekachi Nwakamma; the President, Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, Dr. Ike Neliaku, represented by a member of Council, NIPR, and the Acting Vice Chancellor, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Prof. Kate Azuka Omenugha; the traditional ruler of Akwaeze, Igwe G. N. Okpala; the Southeast Zonal Chairman, Nigerian Institute of Management, Prof. Jude Njiku; and the MD, Juhel Pharmacy, Dr. Ifeanyi Okoye, among others.

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Rev. Fr. Prof. Obiefuna who hails from Agulu, Aniocha Local Government Area of Anambra State, Nigeria started work at UNIZIK in 1997 as Lecturer II in the Arts Department and served the University in various capacities such as Head, Department of Religion and Human Relations; Dean, Faculty of Arts; Director, School of General Studies; Consultant, Faculty of Arts Lecture Series; and member, Senate Curriculum Committee, Nnamdi Azikiwe University among other membership of various Departmental and University Committees.

In a welcome remark, the Vice-Chancellor, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Prof. Charles Esimone described Prof. Obiefuna as a well known person in the university who was active till the last minutes of his years in the university.

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Prof. Esimone noted that in his work ethics, Fr. Prof. Obiefuna remained objective, frank, blunt, and principled, adding that the university would gladly have him serve more in other capacities as he is retiring but not yet tired.

While welcoming all to Prof. Obiefuna’s valedictory lecture, the Vice-Chancellor appealed to his colleagues, friends and associates to support him in his Festschrift Presentation.

The Valedictory Lecturer, Prof. B.A.C. Obiefuna who lectured on the topic: “in Praise of the Study of Religion, Society and Human Relations”, stated that religion gives meaning to culture as there would be no culture if there is no religion to sanction norms, customs, and traditions that are the essential elements of culture.

He noted that the study of religion constitute the supernatural, humans, and human society which offers the students of religion and society a versed understanding of the supernatural beings, their constituents, their models, and the intentionality of these beings in relation to human society, adding that the study of religion and society will directly impact on Nigeria’s national integration.

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In their goodwill messages, groups and associates of Rev. Fr. Prof. Obiefuna described him as a quintessential character who stops at nothing in ensuring that whatever he puts his hand on succeeds.

Meanwhile, his Festschrift entitled : Studies in Religion, Society and Human Relations” is a compendium of scholarly papers in eleven parts, edited by Dr. Ikenna Umeanoluo et al and was reviewed by Rev. Fr.Dr. Ezeanokwasa on behalf of Rev. Fr. Prof. Hyacinth Ichoku, the Vice-Chancellor, Veritas University, Abuja.

High points of the event were the presentation and launching of the Festschrift.

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