Efio-Ita Nyok|17 April 2017
Cross River has lost a former House of Assembly member. Dr. Simeon Joseph Ateh Mgbekem. He was a lecturer in the University of Calabar. A former Presidential Aspirant, academic and Elder statesman. He passed on recently necessitating Prince Thomas Abi Jr.'s deeply felt mourn:
'My heart is heavy. The Egbe nation has lost an iroko. The great Chief Dr. Simeon Joseph Ateh Mgbekem. Dr. Mgbekem was a 1970 graduate. One of the finest octogenarian you can think of. He was a great adviser, mentor, and a role model to many.
'Sir S. J. A. Mgbekem as he was fondly called by my late father was a mentor to my father. A close confidant, role model and a very thorough man who helped shape the life of my father, Chief Abi.
'It was always a delight seeing Dr. Mgbekem. I learnt how to respect Elders from the way my father respected Dr. S. J. A Mgbekem.
'This great academic contested for the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and lost to Alhaji Shehu Shagari who was then President from 1979-1983.
'He was a one time member of the Cross River State House of Assembly.
'Ogoja has lost a great man, Mbube has lost a pedagogue, orator and great disciplinarian.
'While I join sons and daughters of Egbe nation and indeed Mbe in mourning the demise of this great man, my heart goes to Hon. Jake Mgbekem and all the Mgbekem's family over the demise of our beloved father and mentor.
'Rest with the Lord Chief Dr. S. J. A. Mgbekem
Prince Thomas Abi Jr.
(For Late Chief Augustine Abi's Family).
Adieu Dr. S. J. A. Mgbekem. We will miss you.