Home News Akeredolu: Governors’ forum, Akpabio, Sanwo-Olu, others mourn

Akeredolu: Governors’ forum, Akpabio, Sanwo-Olu, others mourn

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The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) and many other stakeholders have expressed sadness over the death of Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu, who was Ondo State governor until Wednesday morning.

Akeredolu, 67, died in a German hospital after a long battle with postrate cancer.

In a condolence message by its Chairman and Governor of Kwara State, Mallam AbdulRahman AbdulRasaq, the NGF remembered Akeredolu for his “humility and non-partisan stance for national interest to always prevail endeared him to many.

“We are indeed saddened by this irreplaceable loss and pray for the family and the entire people of Ondo State in this difficult time,” the message read in part.

“It is with a heavy heart that I, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, Chairman Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), on behalf of my colleagues and the entire staff of the Forum, commiserate with the family of our dear brother, friend and colleague, H.E. Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu CON (SAN) on his demise on 27th December 2023. Aketi was loved by many, a true believer in justice and fairness – a course he towed dearly to the very end. Amongst many, he was a voice of reason, one whose counsel resonated well and often brought succor.

“He was an accomplished Senior Advocate of Nigeria, a true democrat, and a believer in the new Nigeria project. His humility and non-partisan stance for national interest to always prevail endeared him to many. His valuable contributions and interventions as a member of the Forum, helped us forge ahead of our political and ideological differences for the greater good of the nation. He was a statesman and an embodiment of intellectual acuity. We are indeed saddened by this irreplaceable loss and pray for the family and the entire people of Ondo State in this difficult time. May God in his infinite mercy ease your pain. We hope to find solace in our memory of his achievements and that his good deeds will live on. Aketi lived a good life, fought a good fight, and will forever be remembered as a hero”.

Senate President Godswill Akpabio also expressed shock over Akeredolu’s death. In a condolence message by his media aide, Mr. Eseme Eyiboh, Akpabio described the deceased as “a nationalist and the Iroko of the Sunshine State”.

He said Akeredolu was a governor who believed “in true federalism and which he pursued with passion and vigour” until his death.

According to the Senate President, the late governor spent his active life fighting for justice, fairness and equity.

“I am sad that we have to lose Chief Rotimi Akeredolu this early in life. He was a leader that placed the interest of his people above every other consideration.

“He was a man of integrity and strong conviction with a strict work ethos and never paid lip service to the welfare of the people of the state.

“He was a fearless lawyer who spoke truth to power regardless of whose ox was gored.

“As governor, Chief Akeredolu left his footprints in the sands of history, executing landmark projects and implementing people-oriented policies that earned him a second term in office. A man of style, Chief Akeredolu was obsessed with excellence”, Akpabio said.

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu also mourned Akeredolu’s passing, describing his death as a colossal loss to the country and Ondo State in particular.

In a statement on Wednesday by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Gboyega Akosile, Sanwo-Olu said that Akeredolu would be greatly missed for his positive impacts in Ondo State, South-West and Nigeria as a whole.

He also commiserated with Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa, Akeredolu’s widow, Dr. Betty Akeredolu, and the entire family and friends of the deceased.

The governor also sympathised with the entire people of Ondo State, especially the indigenes of Owo, on the demise of their illustrious son, praying that God would grant them the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.

Sanwo-Olu described the death of Akeredolu as a colossal loss to the country, adding that, while alive, the deceased made lots of positive contributions to the growth and development of Ondo State and Nigeria, especially in the judiciary and governance.

He said: “On behalf of the Government and people of Lagos State, I want to express my heartfelt condolences to the family, friends, and associates of the late Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu over the death of the Ondo State Governor.

“I also commiserate with all my brother governors over the death of one of us. I sympathise with the entire people of Ondo State, particularly Owo sons and daughters at home and abroad.

“The death of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) is a colossal loss to the country, particularly the people of Ondo State. He made lots of impactful contributions during his lifetime to the growth and development of Nigeria, first as a lawyer and later as a two-term governor.

“Arakunrin Akeredolu was a courageous leader. He served the people of Ondo State passionately during his tenure as Governor of the State.

“I pray that God will grant Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu eternal rest and give his immediate family, friends, associates, and the people of Ondo State the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss”.

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