Monday, 28 May 2018

THE GREAT ZIK OF AFRICA DIED HERE AND NOW HE RESTS IN PEACE

Standing in front of the Zik Medical center 

Behind me is the 5 storey building of the Nnamdi Azikiwe Medical Center of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital UNTH Enugu, this is where the elder statesman and nationalist who served as the first President of Nigeria from 1963 to 1966, died. He was the father of Nigerian Nationalism. A product of Storer College, Columbia University, the University of Pennsylvania and Howard University. An advocate of Nigerian and African nationalism. He was a journalist, author, newspaper publisher, boxer, footballer, scholar of international repute and later, a political leader. He spent his last 179 days on earth before he kicked the bucket on November 11 by 4.50pm, inside this medical complex he stayed at the ground floor since November 14, 1995, two day to his 91st birthday.   


The Zik Medical center

Selected dates from my upcoming book: A secret Dairy of ZIK

1879                     Zik’s Father Obededom Chukwuemeka Azikiwe was born in Onitsha.
1902                     Zik’s father went to the North as a civil servant with the army
1904:                    Zik was born in Zungeru to his clerk father Obededom.
1912:                    At the age of 8 he was sent to Onitsha from Zungeru.
1915                     Zik left his grandmother at Onitsha at the age of eleven to live with his parents in Lagos. His father having being transferred from the North to Lagos.
1916, Dec.:         At 12, he won a deluxe version of the Methodist Church hymn book autographed and presented by Lord Fredrick Lugard Governor General of Nigeria after he came first at the Western Boy’s High School WBHS Lagos.
1920, August:    Zik entered Methodist Boys High School in Lagos.
1920.                    Zik was introduced to the legend, Marcus Garvey. Zik’s third mentor at Hope Waddell Institute in Calabar.
1920, Dec.:         Zik got the biography [from log-cabin to White House]of Gen. James A. Garfield his 2nd mentor as a school prize.

Standing in front of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital UNTH Enugu


1924, June:         Zik with two others, namely Sidney Brow & John Anyaso boarded a ship, Appam Sailing from Lagos to Liverpool at 5pounds each. The journey unfortunately got terminated at Sekondi due to sickness on the part of Sidney Brown.
1924:                    Zik returned to Calabar, Nigeria from Sekondi
1924:                    Zik prevailed upon his youthful contemporaries to join him in forming the Onitsha Literary Club.
1925, July 31:   Zik wrote from Calabar to his Cousin Prince C. Anazonwa who stayed at Onitsha expressing the rumour of his having gone to study in England and other Local matters.
1925                     Zik proceeded to America as a result of the strong influences of his mentors, Aggrey and Garvey.
1925, Oct. 2:      Zik land in America and was latter accepted into a preparatory section at Storer College
1926:                    Zik won the natural welter weight boxing title.
1927:                    Zik left Storer and proceeded straight to the city of Pittsburgh

The Great Zik of Africa 

1934, October: Zik returned to West Africa after his studies in United State of America.
1934-1937:        Editor, African Morning Post author of eventual classics, Liberia In World Politics and Renascent African
1935, Jan. 1:       Zik was appointed the editor-in –chief of the African Morning Post Newspaper.
1935, Nov 22:   Zik gave evidence at High Court in Accra over some political issues
1936:                    Zik joined Nigerian Youth Movement (formerly Lagos Youth Movement).
1936, April 4:    Zik had his marriage ceremony at the Methodist church in James Town, Accra to his wife Flora Ogoebunam from his home in Onitsha
1936, May 15:   Zik’s Morning Post Published ‘Has the African a God? This resulted in the arresting and ‘conviction of Zik together with the writer.
1936, May 23:   Zik was arrested for sedition and was later convicted in a lower court.
1937-1947:        Editor-in-Chief, West African Pilot, along with Spokesman, Sentinel, Comet, Defender, and others in the Zik Group.
1937:                    He was convicted along with Isaac Wallace Johnson of sedition for an article in the Morning Post.
1937, March:     Zik’s appeal to the West African Court of Appeal was allowed.
1937, March:     Zik was released.



Zik as the Commander in Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

1957,April 16:An attempt was made on Zik’s life, near Government House, Lagos, but for the timely intervention of Mr. Mbazulike Amechi, NCNC principal organizing secretary.
1959:                    Zik bade farewell to the east and returned to Lagos where he went into the new upper chamber (the senate) as one of the twelve members from Eastern Region and became the President of the chamber.
1959, Dec. 17:   Zik gave his farewell address at Premier Lodge, Enugu eastern capital where he recalled his career and also introduced his successor Dr. M.I. Okpara.
1959-60:             Presidential Candidate, NCNC, Member for Onitsha, Federal Senate; Elected by acclamation, President of the Senate.
1960-1966:        Founded the University of Nigeria, the first university in the 20th century established by Africans - and with their own finances.
1960, Nov 15:   Zik got a letter from Awolowo congratulating him on his (Zik) installation as Governor General of the Federation of Nigeria.
1960, Nov 16:   Zik assumed his position as the Governor General of Nigeria, succeeding James Robertson the last Governor General.
1960, Nov. 16: His Excellency the RT Hon. Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe gave his Inaugural Speech as the first Nigerian Governor-General and Head of State of the New Dominion.
1996, May 11:   The great Zik of Africa died.
The great ZIk of Africa


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