The League of Veteran Journalists, Imo State Chapter, hereby announces the death of its pioneer president and doyen of journalism, Dr. Davey Ozurumba, who died after a brief illness at his home town, Mpama Egbu Owerri North Local Government Area of Imo State at the age of 82.
Dr. Ozurumba, the oldest journalist in Imo State, retired from the services of Imo Newspapers Ltd, publishers of The Statesman. He rose to the rank of Editor-in-Chief in the establishment before his retirement.
Prior to this, he had worked in the The Mirror, the Daily Times, Radio Nigeria and many other media establishments where he contributed as full time and part time.
His active professional life spanned the colonial rule, the nationalist movements, the freedom struggles, self-rule era, independence, the military rule, civil war and the return to civil rule (the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Republics) till date.
He was an active journalist who practised until his last days, writing incisive articles for which he was known and respected as a youth.
Davey’s specialization was the newspaper. Starting in Lagos when the medium of the newspaper was unheard of, he was among the journalists who popularized the medium throughout Nigeria. At that time when literacy level was very low, the allure of Daily Times where he worked taught a lot of people how to read. The interesting content of newspapers mobilized the people for the titanic political struggle which terminated colonial rule and won the country the freedom it enjoys till today.
The ebullient newspaperman had worked in the propaganda directorate of Biafra. The newspapers he helped to midwife subsequently are many, some of which survived and others were short-lived. One of them is The Statesman.
He suffered fully the hounding of journalists of that era, when the lives of tough journalists were marked by ups and downs, a twisty affair, going in and out of detention and prison. He endured it all and survived.
Most journalists holding top positions today were brought up under his tutelage.
Davey, in later years inspired the formation of The League of Veteran Journalists in Owerri, which floated a newspaper known as The Veteran Mail. With his professional guidance the publication was able to be realized.
He was elevated in his community as OHA, being one the oldest and well respected leaders of his community. This gave him the honour to sit in the highest decision making body in Egbu community.
Dr. Ozurumba lost his wife a few weeks to his death. He will be laid to rest on a date soon to be announced by the family.
Sir Dann Jacobs