FORMER MINISTERS, GOVERNORS MOURN
Former ministers and governors have condoled with the family of President Umaru Yar'Adua and the nation on his death.
A former Minister of Transport, Chief Cornelius Adebayo, said he felt extremely touched by the 'untimely death' and prayed for the survival of Nigeria politically and economically.
Erstwhile Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Michael Aondoakaa, told the News Agency of Nigeria that Yar'Adua was a great leader, whom he was privileged to serve.
He said he would be at the burial before travelling to Rome to assume his new job as a member of the United Nations Informational Institute for the Unification of Private Law.
Former Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources, Dr. Sayyadi Abba-Ruma, told NAN that 'Of course, I am deeply saddened, I had the honour of serving under him in several capacities.
'He was a great leader, a nationalist per excellence; and I am comforted in the fact that he left a legacy that will be acknowledged by generations yet unborn.'
Ex-Foreign Affairs Minister, Chief Ojo Maduekwe, said, 'I am still dealing with the pains. You know he was my former boss.'
Maduekwe spoke to NAN in a telephone interview from the United States.
A former Minister of the Niger Delta, Chief Ufot Ekaette, said, 'It is a very sad experience; Nigeria has lost an outstanding leader.
'He had the interest of Nigeria at heart, especially the Niger Deltans, so those of us from the region are proud of him.'
A former Minister of Commerce, Alhaji Idris Waziri, described Yar'Adua as a very humble and gentle man, who had a high sense of humility.
Ex-Minister of State for Power and Steel, Alhaji Murtala Aliyu, advised President Goodluck Jonathan to be more focused on overall the development of the country in the face of his new responsibilities.
'As a great nation, Nigeria must move forward immediately to show the world its resilience,'' he told NAN, while commenting on Yar'Adua's death.
A former AGF in the Second Republic, Chief Richard Akinjide, said in spite of his ill-health, Yar'Adua tried to bring peace to the troubled Niger Delta.
Calling on Nigerians to mourn the departed president, Akinjide called for a peaceful succession, adding that 'all Nigerians should support his successor and be law-abiding.'
Former governors, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu (Lagos); Alhaji Rasheed Ladoja (Oyo); Mr. Orji Kalu (Abia); and Mr Donald Duke (Cross River) also paid tribute to the late Yar'Adua.
Tinubu said, 'There is the need for Jonathan to continue with the good works that the late Yar'Adua started in the Niger Delta.'
He added the former president was a great character, very religious, honest and truly loved the country.