Catholic Archbishop of Owerri, Most Rev. (Dr.) Anthony Obinna had last weekend at Ngwoma Obube, in Owerri North LGA of Imo state, narrowly escaped molestation in the hands of mobsters said to be loyalists of Imo State governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, and his son-in-law, Uche Nwosu, who is desperately contesting to succeed his father-in-law.
Archbishop Obinna had during the funeral mass of late Ezinne Eziada Juliana Mbata remarked that nobody no matter how highly-placed could foist any candidate on Imolites during the forthcoming polls, of 2019. He urged Imolites to obtain their Permanent Voter’s Cards (PVCs) to enable them vote during the polls, stating that their destiny lies in their own hands.
Arch Bishop Obinna appealed to Governor Okorocha to hearken to the hues and cries of the suffering masses particularly Imo pensioners, who he said had been denied their pensions leading to their sudden death, incapacitations and the wailings of displaced traders, artisans and unemployed youths who are now forced into street hawking, drug addiction and armed robbery.
At this juncture, a member of the congregation took over the microphone and corroborated the stance of the prelate, thereby triggering the ire of the loyalists of the governor.
Shortly after that, some APC loyalists said to have come with Mr. Uche Nwosu began to insult the Bishop while also advancing to the front roll of the seats, with the members of Ugwumba movement spoiling for war and attempting to forcefully collect the microphone from Bishop Obinna.
It took the brave efforts of members of the Catholic Men Organization (CMO) of the local parish and the second son of the deceased, Prince Alex Mbata to save the day.
Earlier, Rev. Fr. Paschal Mbagwu, in his homily, extolled the qualities of the deceased and urged Catholic faithful to emulate late Ezinne Juliana Mbata.
He reminded Christians that death is inevitable, positing that every Christian should remain steadfast in faith since the place and time of death are unknown.
Rev Fr. Paschal described late Ezinne Mbata as a devout Catholic who remained faithful till death, and enjoined her children to perpetuate the legacies of their mother.
In a funeral oration, Rev. Sr. Augustina Mbata, one of the children of the deceased, described their mother as second to none in the universe.
She added that her late mother touched many lives positively while she sojourned on earth.
Present at the funeral mass were wife of state Governor, Nneoma Nkechi Okorocha; Speaker, Imo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Acho Ihim; Secretary to the Government of Imo State, Sir George Eche, Chief of Staff to the governor, Chief Uche Nwosu among others.