December 29, 2022
President General of the apex Igbo socio-political organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Professor George Obiozor, has died. He was aged 80.
Although the cause of his death was yet to be officially revealed, he was said to have died of heart-related illness.
However, Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodimma, confirmed Obiozor’s death in a statement on his Instagram page on Wednesday night.
Uzodimma said, “On behalf of the Government and people of Imo State, I, Senator Hope Uzodimma, the Executive Governor of Imo State, sorrowfully announce the passage of a great Son of Imo State and Nigeria, the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, worldwide, Prof George Obiozor.
“A renowned academic, an exceptional diplomat, a statesman and a tenacious patriot, Prof George Obiozor passed on recently after a brief illness.
“The death of this foremost Igbo leader and former Nigeria’s ’S Ambassador to the United States and the State of Israel, is a big loss to Imo State, the South-East and the entire Nigeria.
“I have no doubt that both Nigeria and the international community will miss his profound intellectual contributions and wise counsel on national and global issues.
“His burial arrangements will be announced in due course by the family. May his great and gentle soul rest in peace.”
There had been speculations surrounding his death since Monday. But the Ohanaeze spokesman, Chief Alex Ogbonna, had earlier on Wednesday dismissed the rumours, insisting Obiozor was alive.
Born August 15, 1942, Obiozor was a Nigerian professor and foremost diplomat. He was a High Commissioner to Cyprus. He was the Nigerian Ambassador to Israel, from 1999 to 2003. He was the Nigerian Ambassador to the United States, from 2004 to 2008.
He was director-general of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs.
He studied at the Institute of African Studies, and Albert Schweitzer College. He graduated from the University of Puget Sound in 1969, and from Columbia University with a Ph.D. in International Affairs.
He was elected as the President General of Ohanaeze Ndi Igbo on Sunday, January 9, 2021, a socio-cultural group formed to cater for the welfare of the Igbo nation from Nigeria.
Obiozor had his education at Awo-Omamma Comprehensive Secondary School from 1959 to 1963. He attended the Institute of African Studies Geneva Switzerland in 1967 and obtained a Diploma Programme, the University of South Tacoma Washington USA B.A.(Hons) Political Science in 1968, Columbia University New York where he obtained an M.A. in International Law and Organisation. M. Phil in International Affairs in 1974, and finally a Doctorate in International Allans in 1976.
Obiozor was a recipient of the Ugwumba 1 of Orlu in 1991, grantee Albert Schweitzer fellowship from 1969 to 1971, and Alice Stetten fellowship, Columbia University School International Affairs, 1969-1971.