Wife of the Chief Whip of the Senate; Mrs. Ifunanya Kalu who clocked a year older on Monday, 26th October received tons of ecomiums from family, friends, business and political associates who converged at her Abuja residence to celebrate with her.
Notable among the dignitaries who graced the event was the President of the Nigerian Senate; Senator Ahmed Lawan who described the Mrs Ifunanya Kalu wife of the Senator Orji Uzor Kalu as “shining example” to many women.
Senator Lawan who graced the event alongside the deputy President of the Senate; Senator Ovie Omo Agege & leadership of the National Assembly extolled the roles played by Mrs. Ifunanya in the life of Senator Orji Uzor Kalu. He pointed out how supportive she was during the six months incarceration of Senator Kalu at the Kuje correctional custodial centre.
In his words; “This event is to appreciate our wife and sister. Our brother Orji Uzor Kalu is lucky to have Ifunanya as a wife. Ifunanya has demonstrated practically what is being preached in church as for better for worse as been said in the church during marriages.
“She is a shining example to many women; in this life we go through so many experiences; when your better half is supporting you in any challenging situation then you can survive any situation. Today is a day to congratulate our sister, appreciate what she has gone through and what she has been able to go through and withstand and achieve.
Lawan in his address also commended Senator Orji Uzor Kalu for having faith in the nation’s judicial system which he said attributed to his freedom.
In his words; “Senator Orji Uzor Kalu is not only the Chief Whip of the Federation but also our brother that is why you see the entire national assembly gathered here today. I want to thank you; though you have gone through not a very good experience at all.
“But your belief in God, your faith and trust in the Judiciary and all the prayers from your family friends and well wishers across the globe made you to survive. And when you came out you became better than before; I remember the Senate tried to come up with the legislative intervention on how to make life in the prison better although it is not something that anybody will like to have or go through no matter how good that place is. But your experience in prison has shaped your opinion in trying hard to ensure change so that others who have to pass through such, system do not suffer unnecessarily.
The event was preceded by a Holy Mass celebration held at the private Catholic chapel at the Aso-Villa residence of the Kalus they were joined by immediate family members and friends. The mass was officiated by Rev Fr Mike Okonkwo and Fr Francis Mario at Kalu’s Catholic Private Chapel.
The birthday reception which was expected to be a low key celebration attracted the attendance of various dignitaries drawn from the business and political sector.
They include; the leadership of the upper and lower legislative arms led by Senate President, Senator Ahmed Lawan; also among the dignitaries was the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege; the Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Rt. Honourable Ahmed Idris Wase and the Senate Leader, Senator Yahaya Abdullahi.
Also present were a former Senate President, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim; a former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives and immediate past Governor of Imo State, Rt Honourable Emeka Ihedioha; former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie-Oyegun; the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama and his wife, Sulola; the Minister of Power, Mamman Saleh; the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige; the Minister of State, Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba and the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.
The roll call also includes serving and former senators and Members of the House of Representatives. Amongst them were the Deputy Senate Leader, Ajayi Borrofice, Rochas Okorocha, Sam Egwu, Chukwuka Utazi, Akon Eyakenyi, Elisha Abbo, Peter Nwaoboshi, Chimaroke Nnnamani, Michael Nnachi, Umar Sadiq, Chris Adighije, Lee Maeba, Uche Ekwumife, Nkechi Nwaogu, and Hon. Benjamin Kalu among others.