Posted by News Express | 19 April 2020 | 1,255 times
By ISMAILA CHAFE
President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday in Abuja paid tribute to his late Chief of Staff, Malam Abba Kyari, describing him as a true patriot, saying “Abba Kyari was the very best of us’’.
In the tribute released by his spokesman, Malam Garba Shehu, Buhari noted the enormous sacrifices and contributions made by the deceased to the success of his politics and administration and to the overall development of the nation.
The president, who addressed Kyari as “my loyal friend and compatriot for the last 42 years – and lately my Chief-of-Staff’’ noted that deceased had never wavered in his commitment to “the betterment of every one of us”.
Buhari recalled that he met Kyari when he was only in his twenties.
“A diligent student, soon after he was blessed with the opportunity to study abroad – first at Warwick and then law at the University of Cambridge.
“But there was never any question Abba would bring his first-rate skills and newly acquired world-class knowledge back to Nigeria – which he did – immediately upon graduation.
“Whilst possessing the sharpest legal and organisational mind, Abba’s true focus was always the development of infrastructure and the assurance of security for the people of this nation he served so faithfully.
“For he knew that without both in tandem there can never be the development of the respectful society and vibrant economy that all Nigerian citizens deserve,” he said.
The president observed that, in political life, Abba Kyari never sought elective office for himself.
“Rather, he set himself against the view and conduct of two generations of Nigeria’s political establishment – who saw corruption as an entitlement and its practice a byproduct of possessing political office.
“Becoming my Chief of Staff in 2015, he strove quietly and without any interest in publicity or personal gain to implement my agenda.”
While urging all sympathisers and mourners to offer prayers to the soul of the deceased, the president said he would not be available for condolence visitors.
He, however, directed for strict observance of the social distancing rules as prescribed by the National Center for Disease Control, the Federal Ministry of Health; and other safe hygiene practices as advised by relevant local authorities.
The President also conveyed his deep appreciation to foreign leaders and all Nigerians, from whom a stream of messages had been reaching him over this irreparable loss.
He prayed for the soul of the departed chief of staff to rest in peace. (NAN)
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