Chidi Chike Achebe, son of the late renowned novelist and poet, Chinua Achebe, has won the John and Samuel Bard Award in the United States for excellence in medicine and science.
Both outgoing Anambra State governor Willie Obiano and incoming governor Chukwuma Soludo have felicitated Chidi on his feat.
According to the commissioner for information and public enlightenment C. Don Adinuba in a statement on Wednesday, Obiano and Soludo expressed delight at the honour to Achebe, the second son of the preeminent novelist, on hearing the news late Tuesday.
“This is a parting gift to me and the Anambra people as I am about to depart office after eight years of giving my best to a great state,” Adinuba quoted Obiano as saying.
“Professor Chinua Achebe remains a very great man even in the grave, and it is reassuring that his children like Chidi, a medical doctor who trained in some of the best institutions in the world, is steeped in the tradition of global excellence.”
Soludo described Achebe, chief executive of African Integrated Development Enterprise (AIDE), as a worthy ambassador of Anambra State whose passion for Africa’s rapid development “is reminiscent of his father’s lifelong commitment to Africa’s emancipation.”
The award will be presented on May 27.
The late Achebe held a distinguished professorial chair for several years at Bard College.
AIDE, which Chidi heads, is building 18 health facilities across Africa, starting with Nigeria and Kenya.
He has also served as president and CEO of Harvard Street Neighbourhood Health Centre, medical director of Whittier Street Health Centre, and assistant professor at Tufts University School of Medicine— all in Boston, Massachusetts, USA.