The chief press secretary to Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State is dead. Mr Uwakwe Remigius Abugu died of prostate cancer in India this Tuesday. He was 59.
The only CPS Governor Ugwuanyi has had since 2015, Abugu was head of bureau, south-east, for the New Telegraph before his appointment.
A diligent journalist, he was thorough in his reports and articles such that he was hardly faulted. He took special interest in feature writing and excelled in it.
In the 1990s, he covered Onitsha and Asaba for Vanguard; he moved to Asaba when Anayo Okoli was brought in from Lagos to cover Onitsha.
Before moving over to Vanguard, he had worked with Minaj Systems TV and Radio, Obasi, Anambra State.
When Daily Independent started in 2001, Uwakwe was among the pioneer members of staff and was appointed to head the strategic Warri bureau.
In 2005, he was moved to the Benin office where he was until January 2008 when he was made the political editor of Daily Independent and transferred to Lagos.
The transfer to Lagos did not go down well with him as he had no intention of moving his family from Nsukka to Lagos. So he resigned and joined the Compass newspapers that was just coming on stream and was posted to Enugu, a dream posting for him.
Fortunately for him, just about the time Compass was floundering, the New Telegraph made its debut. Again, he became a pioneer member of staff and was posted to Awka as the newspaper’s head of Anambra bureau.
In 2014, he was transferred to Enugu to head the south-east bureau. He was still with the New Telegraph in 2015 when the newly elected governor of Enugu State, Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, appointed him his chief press secretary.
Abugu read English at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and did his master’s degree in Mass Communication, also at UNN.
Besides journalism, he had desired to be a university teacher.
A consummate family man, Abugu was married to Rose, a teacher and childhood sweetheart with whom he had five children. The now late journalist used to drive long distances from Warri, Benin, Awka and Enugu to spend the weekend with his family at Nsukka.
A staunch Catholic, Abugu belonged to the Legion of Mary.
His former colleagues in the media industry have been paying tributes, just as Governor Wilie Obiano of Anambra State has commiserated with Governor Ugwuanyi.
– With reports by Emma Obe