President Muhammadu Buhari and a former governor of Osun State, have described the death of Afenifere’s leader, Pa Ayo Fasanmi, as huge loss to the nation.
While Buhari recognised his wise counsels and his contributions to the nation’s political landscape, he expressed heartfelt sympathy to Fasanmi’s relations and people and governments of Osun and Ekiti states.
Akande noted that his death had turned him to a political orphan, as he stated that it was Fasanmi who introduced him to the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo in 1977.
A statement by President Buhari through his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, read partly, “President Muhammadu Buhari joins Yoruba socio-cultural and political organisation, Afenifere, in mourning the passing of Pa Ayorinde Fasanmi, describing his death as a big loss to the nation.
“The President condoles with people and government of Osun and Ekiti States, family members, friends and associates of the elder statesman, who served as a legislator in both House of Representatives and Senate and distinguished himself politically by always standing for the truth, especially on issues related to the uplifting of the downtrodden.
“President Buhari affirms that Chief Fasanmi’s wise counsels borne out of humility, deep reflection, diligent studies and experience will be sorely missed by governments at different levels, as he regularly and willingly listened to leaders, and always had a good advice on going forward.
“As an ardent follower and prodigy of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, the President believes the fearless and consistent leader of the Yoruba socio-cultural and political organisation lived to serve his people and the nation, and the progressive ideals that he projected impacted greatly and provided a road map on development at state and federal levels.
“President Buhari notes, with commendation, that the efforts of Chief Fasanmi in the founding and sustenance of Nigeria’s democracy will be remembered, and posterity will be glad for his great sacrifices.
“The President prays that the Almighty God will receive the soul of the departed leader, and comfort his family.”
On his part, Akande said the death of the late Afenifere leader had turned him to a political orphan.
In his tribute made available to journalists in Osogbo, he described Fasanmi’s death as a great loss to the Yoruba nation and to Nigeria as a whole.
Akande had recalled how the late elderstatesman introduced him to former premier of Western Region, Chief Obafemi Awolowo and had played the role of a political godfather to him all along.
Akande who was a former interim national chairman of the All Progressives Congress in his tribute said Fasanmi’s death was shocking and very painful to him personally because he was his political godfather since he introduced me to Chief Obafemi Awolowo in 1977.
Akande’s tribute titled: ‘Tribute to my political godfather, Pa Ayo Fasanmi,’ read in part, “I’m suddenly made a political orphan by the passing of Papa Ayo Fasanmi at this point. It is shocking and very painful to me personally because he was my political godfather since he introduced me to Chief Obafemi Awolowo in 1977.”