By Wale Ibrahim, Lokoja
The former two term Governor of Kogi State and All Progressives Congress (APC) gubernatorial candidate in 2015 election, Late Prince Abubakar Audu has been described as an exceptional Nigerian.
This was made known by the various speakers who eulogized his virtues during the Second Year Rememberace Anniversary of late Kogi Political Icon, who died while coasting home victory after the Kogi State governorship election on 22nd November, 2015.
The occasion which was graced by important dignitaries and leading personalities in both professions and politics led by Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, lauded the late Prince Abubakar Audu, former governor of Kogi State as a man of courage and vision who worked tirelessly for Nigeria and Kogi State.
The event with the theme, “The Challenge of Leadership and Development in Kogi State” held at Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre in Abuja, described Audu as an enigma and politician of repute who will not be forgotten in a hurry.
In his remarks, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, who is the chairman of the occasion, said; “ I have known late Prince Abubakar Audu since 1992 when I was Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives and he was the Executive governor of Kogi State.
“In 1999, we were both elected as governors but incidentally we both lost our re-election bid in 2003 and when I was appointed Minister of Defence both Audu and I relocated to Abuja and it was during this period that our bond of friendship became stronger.
“May Allah forgive his shortcomings and may He have mercy on his soul and grant him Jannatu firduas,” He prayed.
The Minister of Science and Technology,Dr. Ogbonaya Onu while speaking described late Audu as great Nigerian.
“Audu was a great leader who will not be forgotten in a hurry. Audu was a great Nigerian. He has not been forgotten, and he will never be forgotten. Nigeria has been saddled with leaders who lack intellectual capacity to drive development, but Audu was an exceptional leader. Every Nigerian leader must copy the exemplary leadership qualities of Audu because he lived for his people. I commend the family of Audu and the organizers, The AuduFoundation, and I hope our leaders will learn from this great man,” He said.
Prof Jerry Gana, the former Minister of Information, who was the guest speaker at the event described Audu as a man of vision who was not deterred by obstacles.
His words, “I first met and knew Audu during the media tour I organized when I was a Minister. His fiscal discipline, principles and diligence were in no small measure.”
Mohammed Abubakar Audu, the eldest son of Audu who gave vote of thanks said, “We thank you so much for taking time out of your tight schedule to honour the memory of His Excellency, late Prince Abubakar Audu.
“We are most honoured and may God Almighty reward you exceedingly.”
Among the dignitaries that present at the second anniversary lecture of late Audu are Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Christopher Ogbonnaya Onu, ex-governor, Ibrahim Idris, ex-governor, Captain Idris Wada, the speaker Kogi State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Metthew Kolawole, former Minister of Information, Prof. Jerry Gana, the Ohinoyi of Ebira land, His Royal Majesty, Alhaji Ado Ibrahim, Alhaji Jibril Isah a.k.a Echocho, Barrister Halima Alfa and friends, family and political associates mostly from APC.
Others are Prince Sanni Shaibu, Muhammed Atiku, Hon Nda Diche and members of Kwankwasia campaign organization.
However there was conspicuous absence of the national chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), John Odigie Oyegun.