Catherine Onyemelukwe

Author, Blogger, Speaker

Alex Ekwueme Has Died

Alex Ekwueme Has Died

Alex Ekwueme, former Vice President of Nigeria, has died at the age of 85, in a London hospital.

Nigeria’s former Vice President Alex Ekwueme is dead

We had heard from a mutual friend that the friend was accompanying Ekwueme on a cruise to celebrate his 85th birthday. The next thing we knew was that Ekwueme had a stroke, and was in a hospital in Enugu.

We don’t know if the cruise happened. I hope so. Clem will speak with the friend soon to find out.

My husband Clem knew Ekwueme from the time they walked together to Ekwulobia Central School from the town of Oko, Ekwueme’s home. Clem lived there with the catechist.

They walked to school together though Alex was a year older. On the way home they would fight, like boys everywhere!

In the 1960’s Clem was Chief Electrical Engineer at the Electricity Corporation of Nigeria. He appointed Dr. Seriki as his Head of Communications, Protection, and Instrumentation Division. Seriki and Ekwueme had attended Kings College, Lagos, together.

Ekwueme was by then an architect. He was given a couple of projects by Seriki, with Clem’s authorization. During the Biafran War, Clem appointed Ekwueme as the head of planning for the national Airports Board. Clem says he was one of the most brilliant subordinates that ever worked for him!

Dr. Alex Ekwueme, former Vice President, at our 50th anniversary party.

Dr. Alex Ekwueme, former Vice President, at our 50th anniversary party, body guard behind him.

After the civil war, Ekwueme resumed his architecture practice in Lagos before entering politics. He was elected Vice President in 1979 with Alhaji Shehu Shagari as President.

They were re-elected in 1983 but deposed in a coup soon after. General Mohammadu Buhari became the Head of State then. He lasted for a little over a year before being overthrown himself. He is back now as the civilian President of the country.

We visited Ekwueme at his home in Oko a few years ago. He spoke at our 50th anniversary party in the village.

Thanksgiving Family and Fun

Two cooks, Kenechi and Mary with Buddy, and most of us around the table.

Two cooks, Kenechi and Mary with Buddy, and most of us around the table.

We shared Thanksgiving with our daughter Beth and her family. Her son Kenechi brought his girlfriend Mary. Chinaku, our older son, came from Nigeria and will go back with us to Westport on Sunday.

Beth prepared the turkey, mac and cheese, and sweet corn. I brought the ham, peeled sweet potatoes, and made gravy. Mary made fried chicken and apple crisp. She’d prepared pies the day before!

Needless to say, we ate well and had a wonderful time being together with family.

Loft and Literature in Westport

On Thursday November 30th I’ll be at Loft, on Westport’s Main Street, with another author. With our publicist Aline we’re presenting Loft and Literature!

From 6 to 7:30 pm, shop, mingle, enjoy refreshments, and buy our books! All at Loft, on Main Street.

Author: Catherine Onyemelukwe

Author, blogger, speaker. Born in New York, grew up in mid west United States, lived in Nigeria for 24 years, back in U.S. since 1986. Advocate for racial justice.


  1. I’m sorry to hear this Catherine. Please convey my sympathy to Clem, especially. Jane