Last year, when Sir
Chief Tom Ikimi, one time
Foreign Affairs Minister of the
federal republic of Nigeria,
former national chairman
of the National Republican
Convention, NRC, who is a
statesman, turned 70 years on
April 10, 2014, drums were
rolled out and the ball was one
of the most splendid in memory.
Heralding the grand ball was
a plethora of congratulatory
adverts both in the print and
electronic media. Those who
finally attended the massive
birthday celebration in the
hometown of the political
juggernaut, in Igueben, Edo
State, will actually attest to the
lavishness and taste of the party.
The event was the convergence
of the heavyweights. Among
the roll call were Former
President Jerry Rawlings of
Ghana, Governor Oshiomhole
of Edo State, the Esama of
Benin Kingdom, Sir Gabriel
Igbinedion and his wife, Lady
Cherry, former Governor of Edo
State and national chairman of
the All Progressives Congress,
John Odigie Oyegun and Prof
Osunbor of Edo State, former
Governors Clement Ebri of
Cross River State and Dr
Okwesilieze Nwodo of Enugu
State, the Deputy Governors of
Edo State, Hon Dr. Pius Odubu
and Mr. Stephen Lawan of
Benue State, were also joined
by representatives of the Oba
of Benin and traditional rulers
from Esan land.
But this year, that gaiety and
delirium that accompanied the
70th birthday celebration had
vanquished when the highly
revered statesman celebrated his
71st birthday. The newspapers
were empty and not much
attention was drawn to the
birthday. According to sources,
Chief Tom Ikimi only celebrated
the day with his families and
a few friends who still keep
the date in mind. What we
learnt was responsible for this
quietude was the election fever,
as the birthday came up during
the governorship election

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