Oguta-born maverick Second Republic politician, Senator Francis Arthur Nzeribe, is dead.
He was aged 83.
A reliable source close to the family who spoke to The PUNCH Sunday afternoon on the condition of anonymity said the flamboyant politician died in a foreign hospital.
He was elected Senator for the Imo Orlu constituency in 1999 and was reelected in 2003 on the platform of the People Democratic Party (PDP).
In November 2002, Senate President Anyim Pius Anyim indefinitely suspended Senator Nzeribe due to an allegation of a N22 million fraud. Nzeribe was said to be planning an impeachment motion against Anyim.
In April 2006, the Orlu People’s Consultative Assembly, sponsored by the governor of Imo state Achike Udenwa, staged what it called “One million March” to drum up support for Nzeribe’s recall from the Senate. In the December 2006 PDP primaries for the 2007 Senatorial candidates, he was defeated by Osita Izunaso.
On June 10, 1993, Nzeribe tried to stop the presidential election that year, relying on a court order which his group, Association for Better Nigeria (ABN), got from a midnight ruling from late Justice Bassey Ikpeme of Abuja High Court.
In August 2007 Nzeribe was appointed a member of the Board of Trustees of the PDP.
Nzeribe, a multi-billionaire investment mogul, was born in Oguta, Imo State on 2 November 1938. His father, Oyimba Nzeribe, was a lawyer and former state counsel, and his grandfather, Akpati Nzeribe, held the traditional title of Ogbuagu, Oshiji, Damanze Oyimba of Oguta. His second wife is the sister of Hajia Asabe Yar’Adua, wife of the late General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, who was brother of President Umaru Yar’Adua.
He died from an undisclosed ailment on the 8th of May, 2022.