Dr. Cecelia Kato, Eminent UNIABUJA Lecturer and Gender Advocates, Dies

By John Eche

Dr (Mrs) Cecilia Kato, the University of Abuja English and Gender Studies lecturer who died recently would be buried on Friday, March 23, family sources have presently confirmed.

A very well loved personality, indeed, the University of Abuja (UNIABUJA) community in Gwagwalada, FCT was thrown into mourning by her sudden death, given that she was also one of its longest serving lecturers.

Dr. (Mrs). Cecilia Kato. Mrs. Kato, 59, was a lecturer in the English and African Literature and Gender Studies’ departments.

The late Mrs. Kato was a well-known writer and gender advocate, Christian leader and respected mentor to generations of her students past and present. Notably, Kato published collections of poems including Desires, and Victims of Love in which she lamented the state of Nigerian nay African women. She was equally renown as an impassioned and outspoken speaker in her various public appearances at religious and circular gatherings. Kato obtained degrees in English and Literary Studies from the University of Calabar and started her lecturing job at UNIABUJA (from where she also obtained her PhD) until her death.

Dr. (Mrs.) Kato died on the morning of March 19 after an asthma attack. Reacting to Mrs. Kato’s sudden passing, one of her children, Miss Ndi Kato, social activist, founder of the Dinidari Foundation and politician, said “My mother was my heartbeat, my pillar, my rock. She taught me everything I knew and she was my role model,’ she said.

‘It’s a colossal loss, ‘said journalist and activist, Betty Abah, a younger friend of the deceased. “Mrs. Kato was the liveliest, the friendliest and most generous person you can find in any gathering. Her laughter and enthusiasm were quite infectious. And she was quite brilliant. As a fellow mentee of Prof. Ebele Eko, our former lecturer at UNICAL (though she was in a much older set), I formed an enriching friendship with her which lasted more than 15 years. I will certainly miss her. Our world is certainly diminished with the sudden and untimely passing of this wonderful soul, ‘ she added.

The deceased hailed from Kagoro, Kaduna State and is survived by four children and nine grandchildren.

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