About Rotary District 9142

BRIEF HISTORY OF ROTARY IN WEST AFRICA AND THE BIRTH OF DISTRICT 9142, NIGERIA

According to available records, Rotary arrived the West Coast of Africa during World War II when the Rotary Club of Dakar (Senegal) was chartered in 1939 in what was called French West Africa. Having suffered much hostility, the club managed to continue existing throughout the war.

It took nineteen long years for a second club to be established in Abidjan, Cote d’lvoire (1956).The next two years, however, saw the formation of a club in Douala, Cameroon (1957) and in Accra, Ghana (1958). However, in 1961, Rotary arrived Nigeria with the formation of three clubs in Kano, Lagos and Ibadan in that order.

The administration of clubs in West Africa during that period was on ad hoc basis, since there were not enough clubs to constitute a district of Rotary International. From 1968, however, Rotary International appointed Zonal Representatives to oversee the various clubs in the following order:

  • Rotarian Jack Fransworth -(1968/69)

  • Rotarian Bayo T. Braithwaite -(1969/70)

  • Rotarian Inder Baker – (1970/71)

  • Rotarian Anofi Guobadia – (1971/72)

  • Rotarian Philip Dudeney -(1972/73)

As at 1973, there were 33 clubs in West Africa and the Cameroon, it was then possible to establish a District. At the 1973 Rotary International Convention in Loussane (Switzerland) the “amiable” Rotarian Francois Amorin of the Rotary Club of Cotonou was elected the first District Governor of the newly created District 210.

The following Governors administered District 210 in the following order:

  • Rotarian Francois Amorin – (1973/74)

  • Rotarian Anofi Guobadia -(1974/75)

  • Rotarian Tommy Hope – (1975/76)

  • Rotarian Henry Gallenca – (1976/77)

By the 1977/78 Rotary year the district was given a new nomenclature 910 with the “indefatigable” Rotarian Sam Okudzeto becoming the first Governor. The following were at various times at the helm of affairs of the district in order:

  • Rotarian Sam Okudzeto -1977/78

  • Rotarian Joe Richards -1978/79

  • Rotarian Nicholas Antoniades -1979/80

  • Rotarian Georges Sangaret -1980/81

As the years rolled by, the number of clubs kept growing. One of the dramatic years was that led by Rotarian Jon Majiyagbe. He made a determined effort to organise the formation of new clubs, six of which he was able to charter during his year, with seven more chartered the following year. With the number of clubs increasing in this rather expansive geographical area with poor communication and other logistical problems, it was becoming increasingly difficult to effectively administer the then district 910. By 1981, it had become clear that the West Africa sub -region could no longer remain as a single district, thus by mid 1982, District 910 was- split into three, 910, 911 and 915. All the clubs from Senegal to the Republic of Benin remained as 910. Nigeria became 911 and Cameroon with parts of Central Africa became 915.

The new District 911 was inaugurated in August 1982 under the leadership of Rotarian Julius Adelusi Adeluyi of the Rotary Club of Ikeja as Governor with 26 clubs. By dint of hardwork, more clubs were formed during his tenure, and by the end of June 1983, there were 62 clubs in Nigeria with a membership of 3,400. For the two years of the existence of District 911, we had the following Governors:

  • Rotarian Julius Adelusi Adeluyi -1982/83

  • Rotarian Beremako Bob Ogbuagu -1983/84

Governor Bob provided strong leadership for Rotary in Nigeria. He was able to persuade Rotary International to establish a local account in Nigeria into which dues and other payments have continued to be made to this day. It was also during his year that a district fund was established for the “adequate administration and development of Rotary”. District dues have thus been paid by all clubs in the district to this day on a per capita basis.

As the second Governor of District 911, which encompassed the whole of Nigeria, Bob Ogbuagu continued in the momentum of Rotary Extension with the number of clubs reaching 83. Because of this phenomenal growth, Nigeria was redistricted into two, hence split vertically into District 911 (comprising Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Oyo, Kwara, Sokoto States and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja and 912 (comprising clubs in Rivers, Bendel, Anambra, Imo, Cross River, Benue, Plateau, Gongola, Bomu, Bauchi, Kano and Kaduna States).

The following Governors led the then District 912, which we belonged:

  • Rotarian Vogen Gambo Sanda -1984/85

  • Rotarian Mike Nduka Okwechime -1985/86

During these two years the onslaught on Rotary Extension continued and by the end of the 1985/86 Rotary year another redistricting had to take place 912 (with 28 clubs and 1,183 members) and 914 (with 49 clubs and 1,852 members).

So Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bendel, Cross River, Imo and Rivers States became District 914 and Frederick Abiye Agama became the first District Governor. The following Governors piloted the affairs of then District in the underlisted order:

  • Rotarian Frederick Abiye Agama – 1986/87

  • Rotarian Ben Chudi Udeze – 1987/88

  • Rotarian Chike Nwizu -1988/89

  • Rotarian Isaac Omire Jemide -1989/90

  • Rotarian Ngozi Cyprian Allanah -1990/91

By the 1991/92 Rotary year , the district was given a new nomenclature 9140 with Rotarian Edward Dandeson Spiff becoming the first Governor. The following have also led District 9140 in the order stated below:

  • Rotarian Edward Dandeson Spiff – 1991/92

  • Rotarian Ita Okokon -1992/93

  • Rotarian David Chinenye Okonkwo -1993/94

  • Rotarian Benson Udealor Aghazu -1994/95

  • Rotarian Cornelius Colonel Otiteh -1995/96

  • Rotarian Eddie Mbadiwe -1996/97

  • Rotarian Henry Ejumudo -1997/98

  • Rotarian Macaulay Nwankwo -1998/99

  • Rotarian Timothy Nwankwo -1999/2000

  • Rotarian Omaka Okoh -2000/2001

  • Rotarian Emmanuel Nwamkpa -2001 /2002

  • Rotarian Eddy Ikponmwen -2002/2003

  • Rotarian Odoliyi Lolomari -2003/2004

  • Rotarian Jonathan Ikeakor -2004/2005

  • Rotarian Nwankire Onuoha -2005/2006

  • Rotarian Charles Femi Lawani -2006/2007

  • Rotarian Udo Mbosoh -2007/2008

  • Rotarian Elizabeth Nwankwu -2008/2009

  • Rotarian Uduak Edward Inyang -2009/2010

  • Rotarian Gabriel Toby -2010/2011

  • Rotarian Olayinka Hakeem Babalola -2011/2012

  • Rotarian Onyebuchi Onuoha -2012/2013

  • Rotarian Charles Onianwa -2013/2014

  • Rotarian Noble Eshemitan -2014/2015

  • Rotarian Ijeoma Pearl Okoro -2015/2016

  • Rotarian Akabom Enebong -2016/2017

Another milestone was recorded during the 2014/2015 Rotary year under the leadership of a fine Rotarian and reverrred traditional ruler , Rotarian Noble Eshemitan, during which Rotary International approved the redistricting of District 9140 into two new districts, 9141 and 9142 with effect from 1st July 2017. District 9141 comprises of clubs in Rivers, Bayelsa, Edo and Delta states while District 9142 is made up of clubs in Imo, Abia, Anambra, Enugu, Ebonyi, Akwa Ibom and Cross River States.

The implication of this is that the current District 9140 will cease to exist after June 30, 2017.

It is then a truism that Rotary is indeed growing in Nigeria and we pray and work together to sustain this growth.

A new dawn in the sustenance of the act of doing good is therefore with us as District 9142 takes off on 1st July, 2017, with the pioneer District Governor Emman Ude AKPEH who is leaving no stone unturned in galvanizing resources, building bridges of solid friendship and re-awakening Rotarians’ commitment towards service to humanity.

To say that the 2017/2018 year theme Rotary: Making a Difference is most apt as we welcome the birth of District 9142, is to say the obvious.

We are therefore enjoined more than ever to put in all our 3 Ts, using Rotary as our platform to keep making a difference in peoples’ lives, our communities and our world.

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