By Sadiq Umar – President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed shock over the death of the elder statesman, Yusuf Maitama Sule, describing him as “one of those who assisted the founding fathers of the nation to fashion Nigeria politically.”
Buhari, in a personally signed condolence letter to the Governor of Kano State, Abdullahi Ganduje, on Monday, extol the virtue of the late politician, nothing that he served with distinction in the First Republic, the Second Military regime, as well as the Second Republic, without him being tainted with the remotest hint of scandal.
According to a statement by Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu, the President’s letter would be delivered by the federal government delegation to the burial constituted by the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo.
“I have heard this morning, the death of the venerable Alhaji Maitama Sule, Dan Masanin Kano, and one of Nigeria’s famous sons. Although, I knew he was in poor health for some time, his death nonetheless, came as a profound shock,” the statement said.
“As a Minister in the First Republic, he was one of those who assisted our Founding Fathers, Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Alhaji Ahmadu Bello and Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, to fashion Nigeria politically and lay the grounds of national co-existence.
“Maitama Sule was blessed by God with a wonderful voice and outstanding eloquence. He served with distinction in the First Republic, the Second Military regime, as well as the Second Republic, without him being tainted with the remotest hint of scandal.
“As a person, I found him personable with unceasing good humour. Nothing personified his faith more than the fact that on losing his sight, he did not retreat in himself sulking on account of his ill-fortune. Quite to the contrary, he honoured virtually all invitations extended to him and spoke as usual with singular eloquence and unparalleled wit.
“In my discussions with him, I greatly valued his counsel, and I never ceased to be amazed by his concern for the well-being of his country rather than his personal interests.
“Let me extend my sincere condolences to Your Excellency, family and friends, the Government and people of Kano, and Nigerians as a whole, for this most heavy loss. We shall not soon see the like of him. May God forgive his sins and admit him to Paradise, Amin,” the statement added.