SUNDAY ODE, Abuja
President Goodluck Jonathan and President-elect Gen. Muhammadu Buhari have commiserated with the family of Nigeria’s first President, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, over the passing away of Chief Chukwuma Bamidele Azikiwe.
They also extended sincere condolences to the government and people of Anambra State, and the immediate family of the deceased.
A statement by the Presidency Spokesman, Dr.Reuben Abati pointed out that President Jonathan believed that the late Azikiwe, who was also the Owelle of Onitsha, lived a fulfilled life by sustaining the humanitarian and leadership legacies of his father as a mobiliser, leader, philanthropist and a highly respected voice in his community.
It added that the President prays that the Almighty God will grant the soul of the departed peaceful rest and comfort the family he left behind.
Similarly, Gen. Buhari has described the death of Ambassador Chukwuma Bamidele Azikiwe as a sad development and an exit of a great Nigerian who was brought up in the best tradition of national unity and genuine African values.
Buhari in a condolence message made available to the media in Abuja yesterday said that “with the demise of Chukwuma Azikiwe, a gentleman has left a turbulent world. Ambassador Azikiwe was a thorough –bred Nigerian citizen who chose a private life after a distinguished diplomatic career in Nigeria’s Foreign Service. There is no doubt that it was Ambassador Azikiwe’s humane and refined qualities that made it possible for him to step into the big traditional shoes of his great father – Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe as the Owelle of Onitsha.”
The President-elect said with the demise of the Owelle, he had lost a friend who cared for him and often found the time to visit at home in Kaduna.
While condoling with the Azikiwe Family, General Muhammadu Buhari urged the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Nna’meka Ugochukwu Achebe and the entire people of Onitsha Royal Kingdom to take heart and bear the loss with fortitude.