President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed sadness over the death of a former senator, Mahmud Kanti-Bello, who died on Tuesday in Abuja at the age of 72.
In a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Femi Adesina, Mr Buhari sympathised with the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria over the passage of their distinguished colleague and former Senate Chief Whip, who served two terms in the upper legislative chamber on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.
”As a Senator representing Katsina Central Constituency/Daura Senatorial Zone from 2003 to 2011, President Buhari recalls that the late Senator Bello was a very outspoken and courageous patriot, who worked hard to ensure that all levels of government in the country were responsible and accountable.
”The President believes that Senator Bello’s effective representation of his people at the national level and commitment to the unity of Nigeria will be long remembered and honoured; and will continue to serve as inspiration to many others.
”He further urged Senator Kanti-Bello’s family, friends and associates to honour his memory by continually upholding the values of honesty and accountability, which served as his reference point throughout his public service and prays that Almighty Allah will comfort all who mourn him and grant his soul eternal rest,” the statement said.
The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has also expressed grief over the death of the former Senate Chief Whip.
In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, Mr. Saraki described late Mr. Bello as an outspoken and courageous legislator and added that Mr. Bello was always guided by national interest and that of his community in discharging his legislative responsibilities.
“With the death of Sen. Kanti Bello, the Senate and indeed the National Assembly has lost a reliable adviser. His wise counsel on national issues was always being sought by both the leadership and individual senators.
“During his stay in the Senate, late Bello was known for his outspokenness, forthrightness and courage in telling the truth to those in power without attaching any partisan, religious or tribal sentiments,” Mr Saraki noted.
The Senate President said that the late lawmaker’s wise counsel, insight and forthrightness would be missed by the Senate, his community and the country at large and he prayed that Almighty Allah grant his soul eternal rest.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, also expressed sadness at the demise of the Senator.
He described the loss of the luminary as a painful one in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs on Tuesday in Abuja.
“Alhaji Kanti Bello was a grassroots politician who served the country meritoriously in many capacities including that of distinguished Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He left behind a legacy of patriotism and service.
“I would like to express my heartfelt condolences to his immediate family, the people and government of Katsina State, and indeed the entire country over the loss of such a great Nigerian,’’ he said.
The Speaker said that the deceased lived a life of service to the country and “embodied patriotic and democratic ideals.”
The deceased was a former General Manager of Katsina Steel Rolling Mills, where he served for over 10 years.