Auto manufacturer, Dr. Innocent Ifediaso Chukwuma (INNOSON), transport magnate, Frank Nneji and 11 other distinguished sons and daughters of Igboland are to receive awards of honour and recognition at this year’s edition of the Igbo Awards/Lolo Igbo Cultural Pageant Day.
This is even as six different categories of Beauty Queens are to emerge at the ceremony billed to hold on Friday, 24 November, 2017, at Victoria Hall, Enugu.
The event, organised by Vine Shield Limited, in conjunction with Enugu State Tourism Board, will be chaired by Prof. Uzodinma Nwala, with the keynote address to be delivered by a former bank executive and a former guber candidate in Abia State, Dr. Alex Otti.
While Dr. Chukwuma (INNOSON Motors) will receive the Prof. Bath Nnaji prize for technology, Mr. Nneji (ABC Transport), will receive the distinguished Igbo Entrepreneur award.
Other awardees will be honored for their contributions to the development of the Igbo nation through their various endeavors.
According to a statement signed by the Executive Director of Vine Shield, Onukwube Ofoelue, the event, the 3rd in its series, will honour media professionals, entrepreneurs, educationists, activists, writers, and inventors.
He said the event was designed specifically to honor, reward and celebrate illustrious sons and daughters of the Igbo nation that have distinguished themselves in different endeavors.
t is designed to project the Igbo identity, promote hard work, compliment the sincerity of the Igbo nation and present them at the front burner as people with relentless zeal to succeed in any field chosen,” Ofoelue noted, adding that the Awards has been endorsed by the Enugu State Ministry of Culture and Tourism since 2015, as a viable initiative to promote Igbo consciousness,” Ofoelue
According to the statement, other branches of Igbo Awards include Lolo Igbo Cultural Pageant, which he said is aimed at encouraging young Igbo ladies both at home and in the Diaspora to embrace their cultural heritage according to the cultures and traditions of the Igbo people.
He said: “The pageant provides a platform for young Igbo daughters to serve humanity and empower communities in the Igbo nation, Nigeria and around the world. This will give them a rare opportunity to display their creativity, intelligence, cultural pride and display their leadership qualities.
“The third aspect of the Awards is the National Igbo Students’ Competition. This is an Igbo language oriented competition for secondary school and university students across the globe.
“It is designed to be hosted by the winner of the Lolo Igbo Cultural Pageant each year, and will serve as her Pet Project for the year. Of course, Vine Shield Limited will assist her in organizing the competition, which will take place on a date before Igbo Awards Grand Finale. There are two competitions.
“These include the FC Ogbalu Prize for Igbo Language Literature and the Eze SM Ahamba Prize for Literature, and while the FC Ogbalu Prize is exclusively for secondary school students, the Eze SM Ahamba Prize for Literature is for students in tertiary institutions. The students competition for 2017 has been conducted and results will be announced later.”
Meanwhile, the 2017 Pageant competition began on 19 October, with auditions in Enugu and camping of successful contestants in Afikpo town, Ebonyi State.