Tributes have continued to pour in for former Head of Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan who passed away on Tuesday at the age of 85 years.
The Federal Government has also ordered that the national flag be flown at half-mast as a mark of respect for the former interim president.
This was contained in a statement issued by the Secretary to the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha. The order is set to take effect from the 12th to 14th of January, 2022.
The statement reads, “Following the death of the former Head of the Interim Government, Late Chief Ernest Adegunle Oladeinde Shonekan, GCFR, President Muhammadu Buhari, has directed that the national flag be flown at half-mast, effective from Wednesday 12th – Friday 14th, January, 2022 as a mark of respect for the former Head of State who died on Tuesday 11th January, 2022 at the age of 85.”
Also, former Military Head of the State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar has mourned the passage of Shonekan.
Abubakar, in a statement signed by his media aide, Yakubu Sulieman described Shonekan as a patriot and gentleman who gave his all for the betterment of Nigeria.
The former Head of State prayed God to grant the deceased eternal rest while commiserating with his wife, the government, and the people of Ogun State.
The statement reads, “Chief Ernest Shonekan was a nationalist per excellence.
”His belief in a United and peaceful Nigeria was unparalleled. He was dedicated to the progress and development of the county. He will be sorely missed.
“His historic and patriotic role in maintaining the unity of the country was one of the many things that endeared him to many.
”He was true, an asset and his counsels were useful for national cohesion and progress.”
Similarly, one of the national leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has expressed his heartfelt condolence message, saying Shonekan will forever be remembered in the history books as a peacemaker who took office at a most difficult time.
This was contained in a statement signed by his Media Aide, Tunde Rahman.
The statement reads, “I received, with great sadness, the news of the passing of Chief Shonekan and l join his immediate family in mourning his passing, but also in celebrating his lifelong contributions to our great nation.
“In his brief time as Head of State, Chief Shonekan tried his best to advance peace, stability and development in Nigeria.
“With his passing, the country has lost another important elder statesman; a man of peace who tried to bring unity and concord during one of the nation’s most trying moments.
“Shonekan will be remembered as a peacemaker and Head of State who took office at a most difficult time.”
Also, former President Olusegun Obasanjo has mourned the demise of Shonekan m, describing him as a unifying force in Nigeria.
The former president said Shonekan will be forever remembered over his immense contributions to the growth and development of democracy of the country.
The statement reads, “As Special Envoy on the Implementation of the Abuja Agreement on Zimbabwe in 2001 under my administration, and Chairman, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) under Yar’Adua’s administration in 2008, he was forthright, dedicated and showed great patriotism.
“He was a unifying force for the nation and his contribution to the growth and development of democracy in Nigeria cannot be forgotten in a hurry. In all situations, he lived nobly and he died in nobility. He was an achiever.
“Indeed, Chief Shonekan died at a time the country is in dire need of his leadership, wealth of experience and wisdom to tackle the multifaceted challenges facing the nation.”