Chief Debe Sylvester Odumegwu-Ojukwu, first son of the late Head of State of the defunct Republic of Biafra, Chief Emeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, is dead. A member of the family, who confirmed the incident, said he slumped, and lost consciousness last Thursday.
The late Ojukwu did not regain consciousness until he was pronounced dead on Friday at a private hospital where he was taken to, in Lagos. A condolence register has been opened by the family at the Lekki Phase 1 home of the deceased who was the President-General of Umudim Nnewi Union in Lagos. The deceased, a lawyer and retired Police officer, died at the age of 62.
Until his death, he was a prominent figure in some controversies in the family, one of which was the recent questioning of the legality of the late Ikemba of Nnewi’s marriage to Mrs Bianca Ojukwu.
“As a lawyer, I would say no. Why I said no is that there are so many marriages, even when you look at Nollywood, there are many marriages everyday but that does not make it legal. “Why I am arguing this is because there was a woman my father married in a court, and that marriage was never nullified, and my training as a lawyer tells me that when there is a subsisting marriage, subsequent marriage or attempt at marriage becomes null and void.” Also, when his father died in 2011, Debe, whose mother hailed from Udi, in Enugu State, was engaged in a controversy with some members of the Ojukwu family, he accused of not allowing him to perform his rights during his father’s burial.
In another twist, Bianca Ojukwu, the widow of Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, has said she cannot confirm the death of her late husband’s son, Debe Ojukwu.
When contacted on the telephone, Ambassador Ojukwu told our correspondent that it was not her duty to make announcements in the Ojukwu family.
When pressured further that as a stepmother of Debe, she ought to be one of the first persons to know about such things, she said Nnewi people had their customs and tradition.
“According to our tradition, it is not my role to make such announcements. We have elders in the family, who have such duties and functions. It’s not part of my duties”, she stated.