Abia journalists celebrate colleague @ 80
By Steve Oko
It was a celebration galore Tuesday, at the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ Press Centre Umuahia at the 80th birthday ceremony of a veteran journalist and the Abia State Correspondent of the Orient Newspapers, Mr. Joe Akwarandu.
Akwarandu who started his journalism career in 1976 as a photo journalist with the Daily Star Newspapers Enugu , has worked with many newspaper outfits including Daily Times, Statesman, National Ambassador and Orient Daily where he is currently.
Despite his age, De Joe as he is popularly called, discharges his duties with juvenile vigour and vibrancy.
Speaking at the colorful event, Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu charged journalists on professionalism and truth.
Ikpeazu who was represented by the Commissioner of Information, Chief John Okiyi Kalu described Akwarandu as “an epitome of humility and hard work”.
He encouraged other journalists to imbibe his enterprising spirit and passion for the ‘pen profession.’
Ikpeazu thanked God for granting Akwarandu the grace to “join the Octogenerean club “.
In his remarks, Chairman of the event and Director News and Current Affairs, Broadcasting Corporation of Abia, BCA, Comrade Hyacienth Okoli described Akwarandu as a source of inspiration for younger generation of journalists.
Abia NUJ Chairman, Comrade John Emejor said it was the first time any practising journalist in the state would clock 80 and thanked God for the grace.
In his vote of thanks, Akwarandu attributed the secret of his longevity and vigour to God’s grace, while appreciating his colleagues for finding time to celebrate him.
The colourful ceremony was massively attended by journalists and friends and family members of the celebrant.
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