By Chukwudi Anagbogu
For many years, a lot people have been wondering the bone of contention between Chief Eze and his 'Di Okpala'(first male child) Gozie. Going down memory Lane, I could remember how Chief Eze cherished Gozie, not because he was his only child, in fact as at my last count, his third wife had put to bed his thirteenth child and ninth son, but of all his children, he was the one that resembled him the most, both physically and otherwise. Then, Gozie was always seen in the company of his father. A mechanical engineer by profession, Chief Eze had always taken Gozie along to his workshop, especially when the later was on vacation. It was an informal form of apprenticeship that it was not surprising that he took after his father as a mechanic after failing to pass the SSCE after several attempts. When his father eventually changed his line of trade, he became the sole 'owner' of the workshop. His father had absolute confidence in him, that he let him take fully charge of his workshop despite being just twenty years old. As usual, the glaring preference for Gozie over his other children pitched Chief Eze against his entire household, but 'as the man always in charge', he weathered the storm. Within few years, the talk of getting married surfaced, and despite being 'too young', he gave Gozie his consent.
Things fell apart the moment Gozie introduced Angelina to his father as his fiancee. The vehemence with which his father received the news was without equivocation. According to Chief Eze,his son could marry any other girl but not Angelina. Gozie and indeed everyone around tried to know the reason for his disapproval of Angelina, but he could not give any cogent reason. The fact that he did not give any reason for disapproving of Angelina, whom 'the whole world' saw as well trained and responsible made Gozie to swear to go ahead with the marriage, because according to him, "he was madly in love." Chief Eze threatened brimstone and fire. In fact he had threatened to disown and disinherit him if he went ahead with marrying Angelina. Gozie was adamant. The only reason that would make him jettison the idea of marrying her was, according to him if his father told him clearly why he did not like Angelina. His father remained unbending, so did Gozie. So, the die was cast...