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"Efik Hall of Fame is a Monument and token Tribute to great Sons and Daughters of Calabar . Presented as a diverse perspective to positive public service , The Unique origins and life's work of each inductee will provide insights and inspiration to the next Generation and all those who aspire with public interest at heart. Calabar was the first capital of Nigeria; Quality and patriotic service , a character of the people of Old Calabar provided opportunity for Efiks to rise in the ranks of public service in the Federation of Nigeria. This Monument will grow to include all those who deserve recognition from the public they serve......... "

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Mary Mitchell - [02.12.1848 - 1915]
1848 — Born at Gilcomston, Scotland. (December 2nd)
1875 Offered her services for foreign missionary work of her church. (May)
1875 Offered her services for foreign missionary work of her church. (May)
1876 Sailed for West Africa. (August 5th)
1883 Ordered home on furlough. (April)
1885 Returned to the field.
1888-1902 At Okoyong.
1902-1910 On the Enyong Creek.
1915 Died at Itu.

MARY MITCHELL SLESSOR

She is the most wonderful woman in West Africa,"came from the lips of Sir William Wallace, the Deputy Governor of Northern Nigeria, when the speaker and the writer sat, a dozen years ago, on the deck of the Corona, the Governor's yacht, as she slowly forced her way up the deep swirling waters of the Niger, at the end of the rainy season.

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CHIEF EFIONG UKPONG AYE [15.06.1918 - 20.11.2012]

Birth
The icon known simply as E. U. Aye was born chief Efiong Ukpong Aye Eyo Nsa on June 15, 1918 into a Royal family in Creek Town in the present Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River State, Nigeria. His father, Ukpong Aye Eyo, was the- son of King Aye Eyo, better known as King Eyo V of Creek Town. He was a fisherman and trader who lived a quiet and humble life. His mother, Nsa Esien Eyo also hailed from Creek Town. She was a seamstress and trader.

CHIEF EFIONG UKPONG AYE

EARLY LIFE AND EDUCATION

Unlike many boys, little Efiong didn't have the privilege of growing up with his father. While he was still a toddler, his no-nonsense mother took him away to Okopedi - Itu, in the present Akwa Ibom State of Nigeria where she was trading. From then, young Efiong was to spend most of his adolescent [..]

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SHIRLEY BASSEY - Born - 08.01.1937
Dame Shirley Veronica Bassey, DBE (born 8 January 1937) is a Welsh singer with a career spanning more than 60 years. Originally finding fame in the mid- 1950s, Bassey has been called "one of the most popular female vocalists in Britain during the last half of the 20th century."In the US, in particular, she is best known for recording the theme songs to the James Bond films Goldfinger (1964), Diamonds Are Forever (1971), and Moonraker (1979).
In 2000, Bassey was made a Dame by Queen Elizabeth II for services to the performing arts. In 1977 she received the Brit Award for Best British Female Solo Artist in the previous 25 years.

SHIRLEY BASSEY

Early life

Shirley Veronica Bassey was the sixth and last child of Henry Bassey and Eliza Jane Start and was born in Tiger Bay, Cardiff, Wales, of paternal Nigerian and maternal English descent.Two of her mother's four children from previous relationships lived in the Bassey household. Bassey's mother listed her firs[..]

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CHIEF MRS. MARGARET EKPO - [1914 - 2006]
Margaret Ekpo, a giant of 20th century Nigerian politics, and a pioneer activist of women's rights, is an icon. She was born in 1914 in Creek Town – in present day Cross River State - to Okoroafor Obiasulor, a native of Agulu-Uzo-Igbo near Awka in Anambra State, and Inyang Eyo Aniemewue from the Royal stock of King Eyo Honesty II of Creek Town.
A fierce defender of women's rights, Margaret Ekpo never apologized for being a woman and that, it can be argued, was her greatest strength. With grace of carriage, she stood her ground as an equal of men, representing women resolutely and with great dignity in multiple capacities.

CHIEF MRS. MARGARET EKPO

Margaret Ekpo's education may very well have ended at the School Leaving Certificate (standard six) level with her father's death in 1934, her hopes of attending a Teachers Training College dashed. She subsequently settled for a "Pupil teaching job," teaching at various elementary schools until she got married, in 1938, to a Yaba Higher School tr[..]

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ETUBOM LOUIS OROK EDET [1914 - 1979]
He was born in Calabar to the family of Edet Essien and Geraldine Orok.He was the Inspector General of the Nigerian Police Force from 1964-1966. He was the first indigenous Nigerian to occupy the position. He was briefly the chairman of the Nigerian Football Association in the early 1960s.

ETUBOM LOUIS OROK EDET

After the end of the Nigerian civil war, he devoted his time to helping war refugees and later became a commissioner for social services. He established a charity organization to continue his effort.[..]

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PROF.EYO ITA - [1904 – 1980 ]
He was a Nigerian politician from Cross River State who was the leader of the Eastern Government of Nigerian in 1951. He was one of the earliest Nigerian students who studied in the United States instead of the frequent route of studying in United Kingdom. He was a deputy national president of the National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons (NCNC) in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

PROF.EYO ITA

Early life and education
Ita attended the Presbyterian Hope Waddell Training School in Calabar before pursuing his tertiary education at London University and Columbia University in New York. He stayed in the U.S. for 8 years. While in Calabar, he was exposed to the teachings of James Aggrey, who pursued academic op[..]

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ETUBOM OYO OROK - [Born on 27.08.1922]
Born on August 27, 1922 in Duke Town, Calabar into the Oyo Ita Royal Family to late teacher Willy Oyo Ita and Late Madam Efiom Oyo Ita, Eubom Oyo had his early education at Duke Town School and later Hope Waddell Training Institution, Calabar. Between 1958 and 1974 Etubom Oyo was the Secreatry General of the NFA. In 1972 he became the first Nigerian to be elected into CAF executive, where he stayed till 1998 when he left.In 1980 he became the first Nigerian to be appointed into the prestigious executive committee of FIFA. He was with FIFA till 1988.

ETUBOM OYO OROK

‘Mr. Football’ wrote weekly column in the Punch newspaper between 1978 and about 1982 and in the Daily Champion thereafter, for some years. Earlier, in Sunny Ojeagbase’s Sports Souvenir, Etubom Oyo’s ‘As I was Saying…’ column made incisive pronouncement on topics many shied away from.He was, at various times, since October[..]

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HOGAN KID BASSEY - [03.06.1932 - 26.01.1998]
Hogan "Kid" Bassey, MBE (June 3, 1932 – January 26, 1998) was the first Nigerian to become a world boxing champion. Born Okon Asuquo Bassey in Creek Town, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria, he moved to Liverpool, England after winning 14 boxing contests. He took the name Hogan "Kid" Bassey when he turned professional as a boxer. He also became a naturalized British citizen. He won the Empire featherweight championship and then the world crown upon defeating Cherif Hamia, the French Algerian in Paris in 1957. He also fought Billy “Spider Kelly, Sammy McCarthy, Ricardo Moreno, Percy Lewis, and Willie Pep. In 1959, he lost the world crown title to Davey Moore, an American boxer on March 18, 1959.

HOGAN KID BASSEY

Hogan Bassey’s professional boxing record includes fifty-nine wins, out of which twenty-one were knock outs and thirty-eight were decisions; thirteen loses with 4 knock outs and nine decisions and two draws. He was awarded the Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) after his world title win.Life after boxing [..]

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PROF. EKPO EYO
He was the first and only Nigerian Director of the Federal Department of Antiquities (1968 - 1979): first Director General, National Commission for Museums and
Monuments (1979 - 1986); Professor of African Arts and Archaeology at the University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland USA (1986 - 2006) He published several works;
his recent book, From Shrines to Showcases: Masterpiece,. of Nigerian Art" was published in 2010 by the Federal Ministry of Information and Communication, Abuja. His
books also include Two Thousand Years of Nigerian Art and with Frank Willet, ca-authored Treasures of Ancient Nigeria: A legacy of Two Thousand Years. Over the past
few years, he completed a manuscript (unpublished to date) on the royal arts of Owo, a major focus of his research (The Master Genius of Owo).

PROF. EKPO EYO

Professor Eyo in his lifetime served as the Vice President of the Advisory Council of the International Council of Museums (ICOM) and of UNESCO's Committee on the creation of the Convention on The Illicit Transfer of Cultural Property (1970) and the Preservation of World Cultural Property (1974).He was a trustee of the Leakey Foundation for Research into the origins of man. [..]

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CHIEF GODFREY TETE UKPONG (UKPONG EKPE)- [1918 - 1984 ]
1918 - Born at Obio Usiere Eniong to Elder Tete Ukpong Onoyom of Ikot Iya and Madam Bellla
Inyang Ekanem of Ikot Ekpika Ndem .
1924 - He was educated at the Church of Scotland Mission School Obio Usiere.
1936 - 1938 - Began his career as a school teacher , teaching briefly at Ekpokpa and at Apiapum.
1938 - He made a career change to join the Nigerian Colonial police force. Upon Completing his
training , he served in the then Lagos Colony.
In Lagos he served briefly with the Force band and whilst in the band , he acquired the pet name
that was going to live with him all his life - " Ukpong Ekpe "
By 1959 Ukpong Ekpe had attained the rank of Assistant superintendent of police [ ASP ]
With that rank , he proceeded to an advanced Detective study at the Royal Police Academy in
Wakefield England.

CHIEF GODFREY TETE UKPONG (UKPONG EKPE)

On his return after a stellar performance he was promoted to Deputy superintendent of police [ DSP ] and assigned the command of the United Nations peace keeping force in the then Belgian Congo during the aftermath of the CIA assassination of Patrice Lumumba , a democratically elected President of the newly free Nation. Chief Ukpong's leadership and performance endeared him to the men under his command and to the Congolese citizens whom he had come to protect. [..]

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DR E.N. AMAKU

late Schoolmaster, organist, Poet, Playwright,Novelist, Historian & Storyteller

It was on a cool night of the 24th of February,1898, in the small town of Okpo the Upper Cross River that a child was born to chief Daniel Obiom Amaku by his wife Madam Ekanem Ikpana. That child was a boy and he was called Ekpo Nta Amaku.

Educated in Duke TOWN School Calabar and later trained in Hope waddell Training Institution, E.N Amaku received his Teachers‘ Second Class Certificate i.n 1919. From that time on, he served continuously as a Teacher, working for the Church of Scotland Mission (now Presbyterian Church of Nigeria) in Calabar and up the Cross River at Abijan and Itigidi, in what was then the Ogoja Province. In 1932 he obtained his Teacher's grade 1 Certificate.

DR E.N. AMAKU

From 1946 to 1956, he was the Headmaster of Duke Town Secondary School, Calabar. After his retirement in 1957, he was invited by Rev. Beattie to return to teaching at the Hope Waddell Institute and there he gave two more years of service. [..]

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 MARY MITCHELL SLESSOR

MARY MITCHELL SLESSOR

MARY MITCHELL SLESSOR

Mary Mitchell - [02.12.1848 - 1915]

1848 — Born at Gilcomston, Scotland. (December 2nd)

1875 Offered her services for foreign missionary work of her church. (May)

1875 Offered her services for foreign missionary work of her church. (May)

1876 Sailed for West Africa. (August 5th)

1883 Ordered home on furlough. (April)

1885 Returned to the field.

1888-1902 At Okoyong.

1902-1910 On the Enyong Creek.

1915 Died at Itu.

She is the most wonderful woman in West Africa,"came from the lips of Sir William Wallace, the Deputy Governor of Northern Nigeria, when the speaker and the writer sat, a dozen years ago, on the deck of the Corona, the Governor's yacht, as she slowly forced her way up the deep swirling waters of the Niger, at the end of the rainy season.
She is the most wonderful woman in West Africa,"came from the lips of Sir William Wallace, the Deputy Governor of Northern Nigeria, when the speaker and the writer sat, a dozen years ago, on the deck of the Corona, the Governor's yacht, as she slowly forced her way up the deep swirling waters of the Niger, at the end of the rainy season.
"Have you seen Mary Slessor? She is worth seeing," said one of the heads of foreign missionary enterprise to the writer when journeying along the west coast of Africa nine years ago.
"You ought to see Mary Slessor. She is a wonder," said a resident from Northern Nigeria, not far from Lake Chad.
Who was Mary Slessor? She was the woman Livingstone among the missionaries.
"Stop! Do you hear me! Stop!" the white woman called as she ran out of the bush path into the village field, where two tribes were about to settle their differences of opinion by force of arms.
"You dare not shoot while I am talking to you!" She was a weak woman, small of stature, telling men heated by lust of battle to stop fighting. She was only a woman, but what a woman! All the tribes far and near had learned to respect her.
"Come here, you!" [she said] to a man who with his gun up, was about to fire. "Give me that gun, and go and find your chief and bring him here!" Then, telling her followers to clear the long grass away and put up her chair, she marched across to where the enemy was lined up behind the mud walls of the village, and, calling for the chief, she insisted that he come immediately, as she wished to speak to him.
Reluctantly the chief appeared at the stockaded gate. Taking hold of his arm she marched him back to her chair which was placed under a shady tree in a clearing which her followers were busy in enlarging. A couple of antelope skins used by two of her servants as sleeping mats were stretched on either side of her chair. She motioned to the chief whom she had brought along from the village to sit down on her left, when from the bushes on the right appeared the other chief followed by a crowd of his armed men, wildly gesticulating. Mary Slessor had sat down in the meantime, but she got up again and told the newly arrived leader of the warriors to send his men back into the woods. She wanted him alone. Was he afraid of her that he brought so many men? Reluctantly the tribesmen withdrew, and scowling and growling, the newly arrived leader sat down on a mat at her right. It took her just ten minutes to settle the palaver, to turn two enemies into friends, to send them back to their people and to their work on the farms. One is tempted to say "they lived happy ever after," but that would hardly be true, for as soon as Mary Slessor's influence had faded, old troubles would begin again.
Though Mary Slessor had no children of her own, she was called "Mother" by multitudes. She was a woman of great common-sense and fearlessness... Mary Slessor was a woman who could get on with everybody. She had no enemies and yet withal tremendous force of character. The natives trusted her absolutely. From long distances they came to bring to her their troubles, and unfailingly she straightened them out for them. When there were difficulties which ... the natives were unable to solve, they invariably turned to the "White Mother." It was a warm spring evening in 1893. The blue smoke rose from the cook-fires in the compounds of Okoyong. The dust haze of fine sand particles from the great Sahara that had hung over the forest all day had been driven away by a gentle south breeze. The palm-fringed forest awoke to its night life, when, through the bush path, moist and mossy, under majestic panoplies of cotton trees, a string of carriers struggled onward towards the clearing, singing quaint songs responsively in honor of the mistress who was coming to call upon a sister of her tribe, hidden for eighteen years in the jungles of the cross rivers. Weirdly their chant preceded their arrival, as Ma Akambo, barefooted, with a baby on her back and a bunch of bairns, black as the midnight, around her feet, was doing chores and cleaning up before their evening prayers. Mary Slessor straightened herself and listened, as through banana bushes, past yon native hut, the strange Safari (caravan) hove into sight. Another Mary, daughter of Charles Kingsley (Kingsley of "Westward Ho!" and of "Hypatia"), had come from far to meet our strange white queen of wild Okoyong. As Stanley once met Livingstone and with simple words, so often paraphrased, saluted the explorer, "Dr. Livingstone, I presume," so Mary Kingsley said to Mary Slessor, "I take it, you are Ma Akambo," while Mary Slessor answered, "My name is Mary, and I bid you welcome." A greater contrast than we see in these two women could hardly be imagined, — one barefooted, shorthaired and rough-handed, clad in poorest garments, serviceable though and neat, the daughter of a drunkard, but now an honored queen of multitudes of black- skinned [natives], — the other, cultured, the daughter of a Christian gentleman of highest standing, her intellectuality far beyond that of the vast majority, and yet withal life's object for her was naught but globe-trotting. The daughter of a Christian, yet professing no Christian principles, but "les extrèmes se touchent," and in the "Bang-bang" wilds of Central Africa strong cords of sympathy, of fellow feeling, yea of love, were knotted to last as long as life should last. "Come in," said insignificant Queen Mary to her stately visitor, "Come in, and receive a Scottish lassie's welcome." They shared their evening meal, then by the fire they sat, while out of the night and gloom gleamed the white eyeballs of the children of the forest. For hours they sat and talked of life and higher life, life's meaning and life's object, of exploration, of palm oil ruffians (for by this name went nearly all the traders of the coast), of native superstitions, witchcraft, demon worship, of native women's degradation, and of the murder of all infant twins. It was Mary Kingsley who was keen on folk-lore and who thought much of the poor barbarians' faith in the wily spirits of the gloomy forests, and felt that the work of missionaries might be the doom of many an interesting custom, while Mary Slessor, seeing beneath the surface, was far more interested in the work of saving babies' lives, relieving sorrow, hunting for opportunities to spread the knowledge of the Prince of Peace throughout the blood-drenched villages and hamlets of the natives. "Had you been here," said Ma, "during the first years I lived at Okoyong, you would feel differently about what seem to you the beauties of native life, for sudden death and sicknesses of chiefs meant always human sacrifices in this land when I arrived. One day I was called into a village eight hours from Ekenge, to save if possible the life of the chief who then was dying. The intervening villages were hostile, no natives dared to follow when I left to save, if it might be, the lives of many slaves and women who would be slaughtered if the king should die, in order that beyond the grave he might have servants in the future life. After exciting hours, and a march through drenching rain, I reached my destination and was welcomed by the grim expectant faces of an armed crowd that was ready to begin the slaughter as soon as it should hear from the king's compound the death wail. I felt as if I'd walked into a den of wild beasts. With some medicine which I was able to procure, with not a little trouble, from another station (Ikorofiong) where a married missionary couple were working, the ebbing life was saved, and with it the lives of many of the forest children." "What do you know of undesirable women being sold to Inokong to serve as food at the high feasts of this section of the Aros? All twins whom God sends to the mothers of this country are killed and many of the mothers too. One day Etim, the eldest son of our chief Edem, had been hurt by a tree falling on his back and he had died. According to the custom, men and women, yea and little children, from the nearest village were condemned to death, it being held that they, by witchcraft, had caused Etim's death." "I could speak to you for half the night were I to tell of all the trouble I had to save the lives of those poor wretches of the village. It cost me silks and satins to save some; for others I cajoled the chief so that he set them free, and, for the last, long prayers and threats were needed, and to this day it is a wonder to me that not one was lost: it was God's gracious hand that gave to me the lives of all those villagers. The lovely customs that you think so much of, are — could you but read the hearts of these child people — an unending horror, — fear of the future, fear of their enemies, fear of demons! Oh, Mary Kingsley! How is it possible for you, a woman of intelligence, to suggest that it were better if this demon worship were preserved, and the natives left in what you call their innocence! Your weakness is the little wrong you know within your life, and therefore you do not see in others darkness dominant. I have known sin from early childhood and realize the difference of a Christian life from one that is without a Savior." Low in the west the evening star was setting, while clouds of Heaven's constellations looked down upon the heart communion of two souls. To Mary Kingsley's eyes salt tears had come. "Ma Okoyong, I admire you, the greatest and most Christian woman of this coast. I would give anything to have your faith, but I can't, I can't: when God made me, there was lost the part that one believes with." Had Mary Kingsley then been won by Mary Slessor, and the two joined hands for Christ and Africa, it is difficult to say what might not have been done; but Mary Kingsley left, and shortly after died ... Thirty years have gone by into the "Never never" since Mary Slessor first reached the Bight of Benin, and stepped ashore at Duke Town. Further and further inland she pressed the frontier of her influence, by way of Old Town, Creek Town, Ekenge and Akpap, Arochuku, Itu, Ikotobong, Use, Ikpe, and now she has reached her final earthly destination, Odoro lkpe. The three mission stations close to the coast she found when first she arrived have grown to twelve main stations and many out-stations. She has been government agent and vice-president of the native court, the only woman judge in the British Empire. She has been appointed an honorary associate of the order of the Hospital of St. John at Jerusalem for "meritorious services," honored by governors and governor-generals, by the King of England, by her fellow-missionaries and by the children of Africa she loved. She is sixty-six years old and her time of suffering and service, her time of earthly strenuous self-sacrifice is drawing to a close. Her skin is like parchment, gray her head, her shoulders bent. How many a time had not her body passed through the fiery furnace of coast fever! How many a time had she not shaken with the ague, shivering in that tropical heat, racked by malaria and dysentery! Her body, never strong, had, like a well-worn tool, come to the end of usefulness; her mind and will were still as strong as ever. What a pity that such a soul could not be given a new body — so it would seem to us with our finite minds! Were human life on earth the only aim and object of our being, then every life is but a tragedy. If, on the other hand, the teaching of the Christ be true and life on earth is but a time of preparation for higher service, the short-lived years of an apprenticeship, then the use that this woman, Mary, made of her life is part of an apprenticeship of heroes and of heroines that will be given wider spheres in the great Hereafter. The training of her will, the building of her character, the daily striving to do good and better, built up the soul of that poor weaver girl into a thing of noble stature. The stage which we are told consists of planks that mean the world, shows in the comedies and tragedies of theater naught but disjointed incidents of life. No life is comedy, though there may be comedy in life: true, many lives are tragedy, but some are not: no Christian's life is ever that, for in its very suffering is contained sublimest happiness. Christ is the great example who for the joy that was set before Him endured the Cross. That all-transcendent joy, that apotheosis, is the Christian's certain hope. The men-murdering world war with its flood of horror reached the far seclusion of Odore Ikpe and caused acute suffering to the little gray-haired lady there, more suffering than her worn-out body was able to sustain, and there she breathed her last on earth surrounded by the children whose lives she had saved. One of the stateliest processions Old Calabar had ever seen followed "Eka Kpukpru Owo" (everybody's mother) to the old cemetery so richly sown with white sand from Europe, on the Mission Hill at Duke Town. Old Mammy Fuller, who had loved Mary much, sat alone atop of the grave and hearing women wailing as the funeral procession approached, rose up and called out, "Do not cry, do not cry. Praise God from whom all blessings flow," while in the far-off northland a little friend of hero-Mary wrote at her departure:
"She who loved us, she who sought us,
Through the wild untrodden bushlands,
Brought us healing, brought us comfort,
Brought the sunshine to our darkness—
She has gone—the dear white Mother—
Gone into the Great Hereafter.
Thus she taught and thus she labored;
Living, spent herself to help us,
Dying, found her rest among us.
Let the dry, harsh winds blow softer
And the river's song fall lower,
While the forest sways and murmurs
In the mystery of evening,
And the lonely bush lies silent,
Silent with a mighty sorrow."
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