Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, Former Abia State Governor, is dead.

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Ogbonnaya Onu

On Thursday morning, the 72-year-old Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu died in an Abuja hospital.

One of his kinsmen in Ebonyi who confirmed his death said that the former governor had been ill for some time and his family had planned to fly him abroad after the Sallah break.

“He has been sick for some time this year and his family said they would fly him abroad to get better medical treatment for him but he could not make it till then,” the source said.

However, Dr. Onu, who hailed from Ebonyi State, was the first civilian governor of Abia State and Nigeria’s Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation from November 2015 until his resignation in 2022.

It was learnt that his friends and relations have thronged his Abuja residence since hearing the news to express their condolences to his family.

Moreover, after working as a teacher and later as a lecturer at the University of Port Harcourt, Ogbonnaya Onu started his political career as an aspirant for a senatorial seat in the old Imo State on the platform of the National Party of Nigeria (NPN).

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He contested for the position of Governor of Abia State in 1991 under the umbrella of the National Republican Convention and won.

He was sworn in as the first executive governor of the state in January 1992 and was the first chairman of the Conference of Nigerian elected governors.

In 1999, he was the presidential candidate of the All People’s Party but relinquished the position to Olu Falae after his party merged with the Alliance for Democracy.

Falae lost to Olusegun Obasanjo of the Peoples Democratic Party in the presidential election.

Onu later became the national chairman of the All Nigerian People’s Party.

In 2013, the ANPP merged with the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), Democratic People’s Party (DPP) and some members of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) to form the All Progressives Congress (APC), the ruling party in Nigeria.

In November 2015, he was appointed Minister of Science and Technology by then-President Muhammadu Buhari. He resigned his appointment in 2022.

May his soul rest in peace amen

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