TPL. Dr. Sir, Emmanuel Emesama Nze, Fellow, Nigerian Institute of Town Planners, Past President, Nigerian Institute of Town Planners, and Knight of St. Mulumba, was born 80 years ago to the Family of Late Pa Benneth and Mama Regina Adanma Nze of Umuokele Enyiogugu, Aboh-Mbaise Local Government Area of Imo State. Born with rare gift of exceptional intelligence in both native and academic brilliance, the young Emma, at the age of 15 years was recruited by Rev. Fr. Gilmore to teach in St. Michael’s Catholic School, Enyiogugu. He became the cynosure of all eyes then, as villagers regarded that feat as an “American Wonder” because he was teaching Pupils far above his age.
Town Planner Dr. Sir Emmanuel Nze left the comfort of his rural community in pursuit of further education at University of Nigeria, Nsukka and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where he obtained both B.Sc.(Hons) in Geography and M.Sc., Urban and Regional Planning in 1972 and 1975 respectively. Few years later, he proceeded to the International Institute for Aerospace Survey and Earth Sciences (ITC), now The University of Twente, in Netherlands for a Post-Graduate Diploma in Geomophological Survey and Certificate in Urban Planning in 1980. He later capped it up in August 2003, when he bagged a Doctorate Degree in Geography, specializing in Rural Development from the Imo State University, Owerri.
He began his career as a Town Planner with the then East Central State in 1973. Sir E.E Nze was an astute Professional. He acquitted himself creditably in the Imo State Civil Service and occupied several positions that included:
• Director Town Planning / Open Spaces Department in the Ministry of Lands, Survey and Urban Planning 1992 – 1996
• Director-General, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Imo State
1996 – 1997
• Director-General, Ministry of Lands, Survey And Urban Planning, Imo State 1997 – 1998
• Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Imo State 1998 – 1999
• Permanent Secretary, Political Affairs Bureau, Office of the Secretary to the State Government, Imo State
1998 – 1999
• Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Lands, Survey and Urban Planning, Imo State 1999 -2002
During these period, he contributed immensely to the accomplishment of most landmark achievements in Physical and Rural Development Planning in Imo State which included the supervision of the 48 Master plans and 7 Spatial Studies and Reports; Regional Development Plan; implementation and monitoring of master plans and layout plans in the Old Imo State; amongst others.
Due to his love for the growth of the Town Planning Profession in Nigeria, Town Planner Dr. Sir Emmanuel E. Nze ensured he scaled through all the hurdles and became a member of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP), from where he rose to become a distinguished Fellow; served in several capacities both at the National and State levels. He later attained the exalted position of National President, Nigerian Institute of Town Planners between 1996 – 1998.
He was a life member of the National Council of Nigerian Institute of Town Planners.
Dr. Nze was endeared to academic excellence and impartation of sound practical knowledge to upcoming Town Planners. Those traits got him engaged at both Imo State Univeristy, and Federal Polytechnic Nekede, and an Adjunct Lecturer and External Examiner, respectively. Those endeavours, he took at almost pro bono. He had almost 60 Professional and academic works, published/unpublished to his credit.
He was Imo State Productivity Award Winner in 1996.
Town Planner Dr. E.E Nze, FNITP, PPNITP, KSM was a devout Christian, and a 4th Degree Knight of the Knights of St. Mulumba, Assumpta Sub Council.
He was married to Dr. (Mrs) Chinyere Bernadette Nze and the marriage is blessed with six responsible children.
As all roads lead to his home town on 7th September, 2023, to begin his peaceful journey to eternity, we pray for the repose of his soul. May the Almighty give his Family, Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP), the Imo State Government and Nigeria, the fortitude to bear the loss.
TPl. Austin Ukanwa Ugoh, FNITP
Secretary, Burial Planning Committee – NITP