• The nomination of some eminent and respected Nigerians that carved niche for themselves
    in various professions as ministers by President Muhammadu Buhari rekindled the hope
    of Nigerians that the administration may yet get it right despite its shaky start. In this
    concluding part of the profile of the most outstanding ministerial nominees, Assistant Editor,
    MIKE ODIAKOSE, posit that these ministers are certain to get portfolios in key ministries

Ogbonna Onu, Abia
Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu is
respected nationwide as a
highly cerebral, principled
urbane gentleman and
politician who is to given to
the “politics of the stomach.”
A blueblood, born to the
family of His Royal Highness,
Late Eze David Aba Onu, Eze
Adu of Uburu in Ohaozara
Local Government Area of
Ebonyi State in Nigeria, on
December 1, 1951, Dr. Onu
showed a lot of promise from
He obtained grade one
with distinction in his West
African School Certificate
examination at Izzi High
School, Abakaliki, Ebonyi
State. Dr. Onu also obtained
distinctions in Physics
and Chemistry at the
Higher School Certificate
examination at the College
of Immaculate Conception,
CIC, Enugu, graduating as
the best overall student.
By 1976, he graduated with
a first class honours degree
in Chemical Engineering at
the University of Lagos. He
later obtained his Doctor
of Philosophy degree in
Chemical Engineering
(without passing through
a Masters degree) at the
reputable University
of California, Berkeley,
California, USA, in 1980.
While in the University of
California, Berkeley, Dr.
Onu was the President of
the African Students Union;
Member, Graduate Assembly  of the University of California
at Berkeley and also President
of the Nigerian Association of
Northern California, Inc.
After completing his doctoral
studies in the USA, he returned
to Nigeria at the time when
many others in his situation
preferred to stay back.
On coming back from
overseas, he taught at the
University of Port Harcourt
as the pioneer Head of the
Department of Chemical
Engineering. On several
occasions, he served as acting
Dean of the university’s faculty
of engineering and was elected
a member of the Governing
Council of the university.
As a pioneer staff in the
Faculty of Engineering and the
first Head of the Department
of Chemical Engineering, he
helped nurture the department
from scratch to a position of
repute. As a member of the
Governing Council of the
University, he worked with
others to provide leadership in
Ogbonna Onu
the first Governor of old Abia
He was the first Chairman,
Conference of Nigerian
elected Governors.
During his tenure as
Governor, he emphasised
the use of technology as an
important instrument for
national development by
starting the processes for the
establishment of a Technology
Village, as well as introducing
computers into selected
public schools. He introduced
the Free Maternal Health Care
Programme, which enabled
poor pregnant women to
receive free healthcare services
as a measure to reduce death
during pregnancy and
As Governor, he abolished
the state of origin Syndrome
in Abia State and led the way
in appointing non-indigenes
of the State into top positions
of responsibility in his
Dr. Onu founded the Abia
State Polytechnic at Aba. He
also established the College
of Technical Education in
Arochukwu and attracted
the Michael Okpara Federal
University of Agriculture at
Umudike, near Umuahia.
In addition, Dr. Onu
established the Broadcasting
Corporation of Abia State
as well as the National
Ambassador Newspapers.
From 1999 till 2013 Dr. Onu
maintained his membership if
the defunct ANPP despite the
tempting attraction to defect
to the then ruling PDP. He was
one of those that brokered the
emergence of the APC in 2013.
A brilliant scholar, exemplary
character and outstanding
intellectual, Dr. Onu has in the
its search for excellence.
Dr. Onu was the pioneer
National President of the Raw
Materials Society of Nigeria.
The Raw Materials Society of
Nigeria, RMSN, with the sole
aim of encouraging Nigerians
to look inwards in the sourcing
and utilisation of raw materials,
played a very important role
in the establishment of the
Raw Materials Research and
Development Council, RMRDC,
by the Federal Government.
In 1991, Dr. Onu was elected

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