Eulogy for Dora
Remembering Dora Akunyili
There are some people whose lives give meaning to the lives of others. Our dearest mother, sister, auntie and super-heroine, Prof. Dora Akunyili was one of such people.
Throughout her life time, Dora left no one in doubt as to where she stood on the issues that define our times. There was no challenge that she considered too great for her, neither was any risk too grave once she felt satisfied that the steps she was taking were in the utmost interest of the people. Dora was one woman who almost always had her eyes on the prize and in so doing, she became a resounding success.
In the field of academics, Dora was a colossus amongst men. In public service, Dora endeared herself to the world with her dedication and selflessness. In pursuit of social justice, Dora was never intimidated by the prospects of paying the high price of standing for what she believed. In all her struggles and advocacies, Dora Akunyili gave hope to the hopeless, sticking out her neck on occasions when less courageous people would have beaten a retreat.
My husband and I had a great friendship with Dora. Even in her most traumatic moments, Dora radiated hope with her quintessential smile and deep humanity. I will never forget her wise advice and motherly counsel that have shaped my understanding of what it means to devote oneself to the service of ones people. They constitute the basic principles that guide my personal approach to the service of umu nwanyi Anambra today. I am eternally grateful to her for making herself a shining example to all women who may find themselves in public service.
In her death, humanity is robbed of Doras genius and redeeming spirit. Nevertheless, we are comforted that in her lifetime, Dora left us enough beacons to guide our footsteps in the direction of a meaningful and purposeful existence.
May the Almighty God accept her peaceful soul!
Adieu beloved sister!
Chief Mrs Ebelechukwu Obiano
First Lady of Anambra State