Published On: Sun, Dec 31st, 2017

The first Ebenanaowei of Tungbo-Ebe…HRH PAUL KURAIKI EBIWARE Laid to Rest

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The late Ebenanaowei Toungbo-Ebe HRH Paul Kuraiki Ebiware who passed on to the great beyond on Saturday, 19th August, 2017 was laid to rest on Friday 1st of December, 2017 in Tungbo, Sagbama Local government area of Bayalsa State.

The late Ebenanaowei Toungbo-Ebe who is survived by his children, grand-children and other relation was given a befitting burial ceremony that began with a Church service, before the interment which climaxed with social cultural activities in Tungbo community, in Bayelsa State.

Papa’s Biography

Early life…

Writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, King Solomon, the wisest King that ever has trodden planet earth says, in Ecclesiasts Chapter 3, “To every there is a season and a time to every purpose under the heaven. A time to be born and a time to die…” Written over three millennia ago, this has remained a universal truth as indeed, there is time for everything.

On September 1, 1915 while parts of the world were going through so much destruction as a result of World War 1, somewhere in the quiet precincts of Tungbo Clan, a baby boy was born into the family of Ebiware and was rightly named Kuraiki Ebiware. One unfortunate thing in the life of Papa was that he grew up not knowing his father as the cold hands of death had snatched his father before his birth.

At a tender age, Papa attracted the attention of the missionary priests that served in the villages and had to travel with them through the nooks and crannies of Ijaw land. While this was going on, an Uncle of Papa named Nbiserie who was one of the earliest Nigerians to serve the colonial masters in Lagos and had become moderately prosperous and was known for encouraging children to grow in the academic world, came home. He got attracted to little Kuraiki who displayed excellence ad brilliance in every task that was given to him. He didn’t want the destructive village life to consume little Kuraiki. Accordingly, he took along Papa with a view to providing appropriate guidance for him.


While in Lagos, Papa rose up to the challenges and opportunities offered by urban life. Urged on by survival instincts and the will to make it in life in spite of the daunting challenges posed by the death of his father before his birth, Papa went to the British colonial master’s golf course to pick their balls for them and help them in whatever way with a view to earning some income in the process, he hit his first academic breakthrough when he enrolled with St. Paul’s School Lafiaji, Lagos Island, where he obtained his first School Leaving Certificate (STD 6)

Papa demonstrated so much unequaled commitment to upturn whatever negativities that were staring at him straight in the face; he, indeed, saw them as stepping stones to a greater, enviable future for himself and for his children, yet unborn. Accordingly, he developed guitar playing skills which fetched him money and fame. With the proceeds that accrued therefrom, he registered for Secondary (Government Middle IV) School Certificate and obtained it. Acquiring academic certificates to upgrade himself soon became an “obsession” for Papa. He was one of the very few Ijaw (Izon) man to pass the Preliminary, Intermediate and Final Certificate Examinations of the Chartered Institute of Secretaries (CIS) London and became its Associate Member (ACIS). This certificate was the equivalent of a University first degree.

In his chosen career, Papa was thoroughbred professional as he spent time and money to acquire the necessary certification. For instance, he registered for the ACCS London (Corporate/Chartered Secretaries and Administration); Affiliate IPM, London; and several other professional courses and obtained the certificates.

While selflessly discharging the responsibilities assigned to him to make Nigeria a better place, Papa attended several other courses, both at home and abroad. These include Administrative Management Techniques, University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University); Senior Personnel Management and Administration, Royal Institute of Public Administration, London; Management Consulting and Management Services Course, Administrative Staff College of Nigeria (ASCON) Badagry. While he was undergoing the ASCON programme, he was attached to Hicklings Partners in Canada. Papa also attended a course on Manpower Budgeting and Staff Inspection in Nigeria and RIPA London in the United Kingdom.



Papa took up appointment with her Majesty’s Civil Service (Colonial FG Service) in about 1947/48 after a few years in the service, he was deployed to Fanandapo (now Malabo) and also to Spanish Equatorial Guinea in Central Africa.

In his public service career which spanned from the period Nigeria was under the tutelage of her Colonial masters to independence, Papa had the rare privilege of moving from one federal ministry or department to another and this was due largely to the proficiency with which he discharged his assignment. Simply put, Papa was not only effective but also efficient and was sought by the heads of various MDAs.

Accordingly, he served, at various times in the Federal Ministry of Labour; Health; Economic Development; Establishment and Service Matters; Industries; Cabinet Office; Agriculture and Communication which was the last ministry he served.

In addition, Papa also served in the Federal Public Service Commission and Federal Electoral Commission. He was one of the Federal Commissioners of FEDECO under Ovie Whiskey. Papa also served in the Niger Delta Development Board (NDDB), National Census Board and National Youth Service Corps (NYSC). Papa did the winding-up of the NDDB. He was posted to the Cabinet Office specifically to set up the NYSC programme.

His qualifications, couple with the dexterity the flawlessness with which he handled administrative duties, earned him conversion from the executive to administrative cadre in the Federal Civil Service long before his retirement in April 13, 1984.


At the time of his birth, traditional religious worship was the order of day but quite “strangely”, he refused to join what obviously was in vogue. He soon found favour with the Christian missionaries that came to Tungbo for evangelism. These missionaries were Rev. Fr. Clark Thomas of the Roman Catholic Church who came in 1928 and Rev. Henry Proctor of Church Missionary Society in 1930.

He was believed to have been baptized by the Catholic priest and given the name Paul. This explains why his name became Paul Kuraiki Ebiware and he remained an uncompromising Catholic faithful until his glorious home-call.


His Royal Highness Chief Paul Kuraiki Ebiware in recognition of his dogged fight for Tungbo’s well-being, coupled with his wide travels, exposure, experience and administrative ingenuity, was invited and unanimously crowned without any opposition as the first Ebenanaowei of Tungbo-Ebe (Clan). This was after his meritorious retirement from the Federal Civil Service on 13th April 1984.

As a dogged fighter, he started the battle for the Ebenanaowei and Amananaowei stools of Tungbo as evident in his memo to the Hon Commissioner of Local Government and Rural Development. Port Harcourt, Rivers State dated 12th January 1987. His efforts paid off when, on May 12, 1999, then Military Administrator of Bayelsa State, Lt. Col Paul Edor Obi, appended his signature on the Certificate of Recognition of the Ebenanaowei of Tungbo Clan as a Second Class traditional ruler.


Papa was a dedicated family ma which was evident in the way he nurtured his family both immediate and extended family into one peaceful and united unit. Papa married his wife the late Patricia Ebiware -nee Parmetimoh and they were blessed with children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, as a man that knew the value of education he ensured all his children had luxury of the basic level of education, this he also extended to family members and relative and many have grown to be reputable members of the society. A family man without discrimination he rendered selfless service in many ways that cut across many tribes within the country when he was in active service. Papa imbibed values culture and ethics into his children and close relatives which has transformed them to the men and women they are today.


Papa had a premonition of his death. About a week before he passed on, he was said to have told some close relations that a beautiful ship came to fetch him but that at the time he got to the community riverside, the ship had departed. He promised that whenever the ship would return, he would not miss it.

Though his death on 19th August, 2017 was in answer to God’s call after living a successful life for 102years (1915-2017) a great vacuum has been created but we give praise to almighty God. Sail on to glory HRH Paul Kuraiki Ebiware.


The death of our father, HRH. P.K.EBIWARE did not surprise anybody who knew him at the age he died.

However for those of us his children (myself inclusive), it has left a very big vacuum in our lives and family. Apart from being the oldest in our family, he was also oldest and the Ibedaowei of Tungbo-Ebe. Providence was very kind to our father when he became the first Ibedaowei of Tungbo Clan as a result of his contributions towards the actualization of the classification of Bayelsa State.

Again, his contribution to the development of our family especially in the area of human capital development was enormous. Most of us owe our present positions in life to his largesse.

He was a man whose life touched positively on very many people both nationally as a Federal Senior Civil Servant and at the community level and therefore he has left an enviable legacy.

But according to the sage “all that is born of a woman must return to his creator” so he has gone home to rest eternally in the bosom of God the Father is his appointed time.

Adieu Pa, until we meet to part no more.


Head of Family


A Tribute To My Father

A tribute to my Father, Chief Paul Kuraiki Ebiware. It was 8am, the darkest hour of the darkest day of our life, August the 19th, 2017. My father that I looked up to as the strongest and wisest man passed on I celebrate and am happy for the life he lived.

With the passage of time this wonderful character seems to evolve in my eyes, especially as a caring father. He was a man who never bothered about anything in life. He was content with what he had. My father had love for his people the Ijaw tribe and Nigeria at large.

It was from him I first heard the word don’t give a man fish but teach the man how to fish and he will appreciate your gift. People always visit the house asking for monetary support for their family or to train their children. His advice had always been, “here is transport money for your journey back meanwhile come and see me in the office tomorrow in my office and I will find you a job”. Out of his numerous good deeds in his life one stands out. While at the Census Board in Surulere, Lagos, Papa asked an Ijaw man who visited to go to Ajegunle and ask any Ijaw person looking for work to come and see him.

Within a couple of months there were Ijaw nationalities as Cleaners, Security Guards, and Clerks etc all over the facility.

He instilled in me the principle that whatever you work hard for you will get. He was a self-made man who grew and built himself from bottom to the pinnacle of his career as a top civil servant in the Federal Civil Service. He had the principle of what you don’t have money to buy you don’t need. He believed in live and let’s live.

Papa may your gentile soul rest in peace.

He is survived by Seven Children, Eighteen Grand- Children and Seven Great Grand-Children.





My Princess, eni Mieifa ma, ‘ngalagala gbusa’, e no ma! These words keep ringing in my ears the way you welcome me whenever I come home. How I missed these words on the 19th of August 2017, when I got home. The air was still cause a legend, a great man, an upright and seasoned administrator had just passed on to the great beyond.

It felt like a dream when I held you thinking and hoping you’ll respond but alas reality dawned on me. You were loving, charming, handsome, formidable, astute and diligent. You were firm, guiding all of us in the rugged path.

Through life high and low, you were a solid rock, an unwavering pillar of strength that comforted, counseled, scolded and loved even after scolding. You supported me with unflinching devotion, never believing a woman’s voice should not be heard. Growing up in the midst of boys, you gave room for me to air my views and partake in issues that matter in the family.

I am very grateful to God for blessing me with a father like you. You taught us the importance of family tide, have faith in God, self-confidence of hard work, honesty and an undeniable strength in gentleness. You lived a fulfilled and remarkable life. You were a great man I was fortunate to know, full of wisdom of God and very contented.

Papa was so simple and humble. Nothing was more important to him than the honour of the name he bore and he drummed that into our ears and those of my siblings “a good name and peace of mind is better than material wealth. If you don’t live above your  means, you’ll never borrow”

I’ll miss my quarterly home visits and especially the conversation we use to have each time I made such trips home. You will forever remain indelible in my heart. Sleep on Papa, Ofedudumadu. HRH, Paul Kuraiku Ebiware Biekuru 1, of Tungbo Ebe.

Mieifa Dorothy Anuta (nee Ebiware)



Papa words are not enough to describe the way you affected my life positively both as a growing child and as an adult, the virtues, discipline, commitment and dedication with the fear of God you taught us shaped us into the men we are today. You taught us that hard work is the key to success and merit was the only way to rise up the ladder without ever failing down. Your principles were so admirable, you did not compromise on your beliefs and principles even at the most trying times when all you stand for was shaken. You loved God so much and tried very well to let all your children know that God was always there to guide us and we should always recognize the presence of God in all we do. You always spread your hands of love to everyone around you which was so evidenced in your entire career path from an active Civil Servant and all the years you ruled as Ebenanaowei of Tungbo clan. You are my mentor!! Even if I come in another life I will wish for you to be my father again.

ADIEU PAPA!! My father, my friend and my mentor.

Felix Benaebi Ebiware –Son



What do I have to say about a complete father??

Who sat and watched my everything, gave us everything he had even when he didn’t have. So many things to say about “Papa” my role model. He tells you never to be in a hurry to get to the top because he knows that you will get there at a given time by almighty God.

Strict but with a reason you molded me and everyone around you to be a reference from God. You were never proud, always contented with what you had. Growing up was not smooth but we saw the reasons for which you made it so, we are so proud of your precept which is guiding us till date.

I remember our morning devotions when you had to make sure we were all playing a role, we frowned at it then but we are also doing same in our various families now with so much joy, you sang great choruses to awaken our spirit and we are doing same now.

You bothered about making us perfect creatures from God than earthly humans. So much to say about my loving, darling, patriotic, patient, contented father Chief P.K. Ebiware.

Death has done it’s at a very ripe age, as you lived a complete life worthy of emulation. Just the way we sing   “Abrahams Blessings are mine” So shall your blessing be upon us. You ran the race to the full. Sleep well my father.

Rest in Perfect Peace.

Sir (Arc) Premo Ebiware (KSJI)



My dearest and most respected Uncle, death has finally taken you away from me. This confirms the saying that “death is a necessary end” “It must come when it will come”  If not for this necessity. I would not have achieved any feat without your intervention. That you gave me the security, success and happiness I am enjoying today is a reality. These I dedicate to you.

Uncle you are a benevolent mentor. You rescued me from condemnation to perpetual darkness and doldrums, when you took me away from the primitively  of village  life in my very early teens to start western education under your very supervision in far-away Ibadan when your nuclear family was thin. You taught me how to read and write thereby laying a solid foundation for me. That I have qualifications including a Master’s degree is your making because you laid a solid foundation for me.

Your love for western education is revealed by your ability to give all your children university education. You taught me to be a hard worker and to be self-reliant and that I imbibed.

You positively touched the lives of many people and the people loved you. Your good legacies will forever remain indelible. You are a father and role model to all. A man of love, peace and outstanding integrity. Uncompromising Catholic faithful in the end.

You are the best Uncle I have ever known. Good-Bye!

May your gentile soul rest in the bosom of the Lord. Amen!

COLEMAN E.F. Agbalalah, JP.


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(l-r) Ghomorai Presidor, Jenkins Ebiware (First Son of the Ebenanaowei), Kuronakigha Ghomorai and Engr. Ben Okoro at the occasion

COVERAGE WAS SPONSORED BY: Gen. Paul Tare Boroh (Rtd.,) Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme

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