Delta State Information Commissioner, Patrick Ukah, recently laid his father, Pa Albert Ukah to rest at in his home town, Okpanam, in Oshimili North LGA, Delta State, precisely on Friday October 9, 2015.
The interment ceremony was heralded by a Vigil Mass on Thursday, 8th October and a well attended Requiem Mass on Friday 9th October, both at the St. Michaels’ Catholic Church, Okpanam, Delta State, before Pa Ukah was finally laid to rest at the Ukah Family Compound.
A sumptuous reception, for guests and well wishers was then held at St. Mulumba Secondary School field/playground, also in Okpanam, Delta State.
The rites of passage ceremony was attended by top government functionaries including Senator (Barr.) Peter Nwaoboshi, immediate past Delta PDP Chairman and now Senator representing Delta North Senatorial zone in the Senate, Chief of Staff Delta State Government House, Rt. Hon. Tams Brisibe, who represented Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, the Delta State Commissioner for Higher Education, Hon. Jude Sinebe and members of the Delta State Ministry of Information including the Director of Information Mr. Paul Osahor, amongst others.
Ogbueshi Albert Kankenjimenjo Ukah (September 29, 1929 – August 7, 2015), was born in Lagos on 29th September, 1929 to the family of Late Onishe James Nwanbukwu Ukah of Umuomake quarter, Obodogwugwu village, Okpanam, Delta State.
He attended St. Michael’s primary school, Okpanam, after which he travelled to Enugu to join his late elder brother Ogbueshi DC Ukah, from where he travelled to Jos, Plateau State and subsequently began working with Taco Nig., Ltd, Jos, as a salesman and rose through the ranks to head the then Western region covering Oshogbo and Ibadan. He eventually settled down in Lagos to his private business.
A great sportsman, particular renowned for his wrestling prowess, for which he was fondly addressed with the sobriquet, Albert the Cat and was undefeated during his wresling days by his peers, Pa. Ukah not only bequeathed sporting genius to his children, who are all sportsmen and women of considerable repute, but also passed on his generousity and kind-heartedness to his immediate and extended families including the Obi Okeze’s of Ibusa, and equally ensured that they all receieved education as a lasting legacy in the families.
In a brief tribute delivered during the Requiem Mass, the son and Delta State Commissioner for Information, Hon. Patrick Ukah, described his father, the late Pa. Albert Ukah as a disciplinarian, a man of very strong conviction, a lover of justice and a fighter who was fulfilling destiny to the last day and planning for the future till he took his last breath.
Hon. Ukah, who noted that ‘Ishinwanne’, the ancestral family compound, was a home for all and sundry, brothers, friends and relatives alike, told the gathered congregation that one of his father’s great wish was to build a befitting Church House for the officiating Minister’s of St. Michael’s Catholic Church and every effort and contribution to fulfil that wish by Pa. Albert Ukah would be greatly appreciated.
Pa. Albert Ukah met and got married to his late wife, Mrs. Veronica Ozo Ukah in Jos who, over the years, became his greates fan and pillar of strength. They were blessed with six children; four boys and two girls.
A very kind man, who would often forfeit his own pleasures to ensure that others were satisfied, Pa. Albert retired home to Okpanam after years of toil and hardwork and was renowned for his tenacity and fighting spirit, which kept him going for Eight years after his wife, Mrs. Veronica Ukah passed on.
Pa Albert Kankenjimenjo Ukah, a politician, activist, infectious traditionalist, devout Christian who loved God and a man who not only impacted positively on many lives too numerous to be quantified but equally loved his own to the very end, was also survived by four brothers and a sister.
‘He will be greatly missed. Goodnight Papa…Ka chifoo’, Hon Patrick Ukah said to wish his father a final farewell and a peaceful rest in the bosom of the Lord.