Business mogul and philanthropist, Prince Tonye Princewill, has formally announced the death of his father and the Amanyanabo of Kalabari Kingdom in Rivers State, King Professor Theophilus Princewill.
The late king was also Chairman of the Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers (RSCTR).
Princewill, in a statement made available to newsmen in Port Harcourt, said in accordance with the tradition of Kalabari Kingdom, the Buguma Council of Chiefs and the Kalabari Council of Chiefs were formally briefed on Saturday about the monarch’s demise.
The statement reads in part: “It is with a very heavy heart that I am formally announcing the departure of my father, our King and His Serene Majesty, King Prof. T.J.T Princewill, Amachree the XI and Amanyanabo of the Kalabari Kingdom. He was not just my father, he was also my best friend.
“Earlier today, the Buguma Council of Chiefs and the Kalabari Council of Chiefs were formally briefed, all in accordance with Kalabari tradition, thereby opening the door to our now officially informing the world, as the cart can not be put before the horse.
“Further announcements will follow in the days and weeks to come, but we call on you for your prayers and your well wishes, not just for the family, but for the entire Kalabari Kingdom. He will truly be missed.”
Born on 4 January, 1930 in Buguma City into the Royal Family of King and Queen Jacob Tom Princewill, Amachree the VII, the late monarch, attained his professorship in the year 1984 at the University of Port Harcourt.
He was traditionally installed King Amachree XI on the 23rd day of March, 2002, thus making him the first Professor to become a King of the Kalabari Kingdom and by extension Rivers State.
The late Princewill was the first Head of Department of Microbiology, the first Professor of Microbiology and the first black Professor to be Dean, Faculty of Science, Rivers State University of Science and Technology where he finished his stint with academia.