By Teddy Nwanunobi
Abuja (Sundiata Post) — The duo of the Senate President, Abubakar Bukola Saraki, and former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, have, on Monday, mourned the death of a former Managing Director of the Daily Times of Nigeria, Adinoyi Ojo Onukaba, following a reported armed robbery attack.
Saraki, who expressed sadness, described Onukaba, “as a quintessential intellectual, consummate administrator, complete gentleman and a detribalised Nigerian”.
Atiku, on the other hand, described the death of the veteran journalist, playwright, writer and academic as shocking and painful beyond words.
In a statement by his Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, Saraki maintained that Onukaba would be missed for his contributions to the growth and development of the country, both in the media, as well as his literary and political fields.
“Onukaba was one man zealous to use his God given talent to benefit humanity. Generations unborn will drink from the fountain of his wisdom which he has aptly embedded in some of his books and publications.
“He shall be sorely missed by his family, the people of Kogi State, Nigeria and the world at large,” Saraki said.
He commiserated with his immediate family, the government and people of Kogi State over the untimely death of their dear son, and a true Nigerian.
While urging his immediate family to take solace in the fact that Onukaba served his country excellently and left his footprints on the sands of time, he prayed God to grant the soul of the deceased eternal rest.
In a statement released by his media office in Abuja,Atiku, who has known Onukaba for nearly three decades, described his former spokesperson as an irreplaceable asset.
He added that the deceased was loyal and reliable until the very last day.
“Onukaba was at my house just on Friday.
“He visited me just before travelling out of Abuja.
“I had no idea that it was the last time I would ever set eyes on him,” he said.
Atiku recalled Onukaba’s relationship with him over the past few decades as a journalist covering aviation; as the man, who penned his popular biography; as the man, who was an indispensable member of his media team; as the man, who became his political protégé; and as the man, who boldly spoke the truth to him always.
“Ojo had little concern for material things.
“He was a pure intellectual, motivated only by a desire to give the best that his brains had to offer,” he said.
The former Vice President added that an entire book of thousands of pages would be needed, if he were to say everything that he thought and felt about his long-time friend, now gone forever.
“May God grant his family in particular his children the grace they need to go through this toughest of times,” he added.