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Adichie shares childhood experience

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… As she buries mother in Abba

IT WAS an official beginning of another mourning period, as award-winning Nigerian novelist-cum-feminist, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, buried her mum, the late Mrs Grace Ifeoma Adichie, barely five months after burying her dad, the late Prof. James Nwoye Adichie.

  The burial, which took place on Saturday, at Adichie’s hometown, Abba, in Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra State, came exactly two months after the demise of Mrs. Adichie, who died on March 1, which coincidentally was her husband’s 89th posthumous birthday.

 In his homily during the burial mass, which held at St. Paul’s Catholic Church, Abba, the Auxiliary Bishop of Awka Catholic Diocese, Most Rev. Dr  Jonas Benson Okoye, who consoled the Adichie family for the double tragedy that befell them within a very short period of time, reminded them that the ball is now on their court, to take over from their parents and sustain their good legacies.

 On his own part, the Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano, represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Solo Chukwulobelu, who recounted and appreciated some of the legacies and contributions of the late Mr. and Mrs. Adichie in the state, further reassured the family that the government and entire people of Anambra state shared in their grief, even as he urged them to emulate and follow the footsteps of their late parents.

Contributing, a former Governor of Anambra State and one-time Vice Presidential Candidate in Nigeria, Mr. Peter Obi, who revealed that the late Mr and Mrs Adichie were more like parents than family friends to him, further opined that it may have been the will of God to call Mrs Grace Adichie home at the time of her demise, and prayed God to welcome and grant her eternal rest in His kingdom, and to also give him and the family members the fortitude to bear the irreplaceable loss.

 “She was a fantastic woman; and I will miss her and her beloved husband, Prof. James Adichie so dearly,” he said.

In an interview with newsmen, Chimamanda Adichie, who earlier read the scriptural texts during the burial Mass, described her mother as a great and humble woman, who lived a life worthy of emulation, even as she promised to live a life that would make her mother proud anywhere she is.

She said, “both in this life and in my next life, she will still be my mother. My mother was kind and warm, funny and fun, and intelligent and sharp. And she was very supportive of all of us, her children. What I am today is because of how she raised me up and what she planted in me. I want to live my life in a way that I hope to make her proud wherever she is.”

When requested to share a memorable experience with her mum, Adichie said, “I don’t eat garri or any kind of swallow. I stopped it when I was nine years old. It was the day that I told my mum that I don’t like swallow… Because we had to eat garri and soup every afternoon; and I was pretending I was eating it. And I was lying. And one day I told my mother ‘Mum see, I don’t like eating swallow.’ And she asked why. And I told her ‘See I don’t just like it and anything swallow. I have been pretending all this while’ And she said I wouldn’t be served it any longer.

The well-attended burial ceremony attracted sympathisers from both within and outside the country, including members of the Society of Young Nigerian Writers (Anambra State Chapter), and Chimamanda Adichie’s husband, Dr. Ivara Esege, who had come to bid farewell to his mother in-law. Adichie’s beloved daughter was also present and visible at the burial.

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