Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari, said he has received with “profound sadness,” news of the passing of the Emir of Lafia, Isah Mustapha Agwai I.
Mr Agwai died on Thursday at a private hospital in Abuja after a prolonged illness.
His death brings to three the number of first class emirs from Nasarawa State who have passed in recent times. The death was earlier announced of the emirs of Awe and Nasarawa.
While the immediate past minister of state for the environment has been announced as the new emir of Nasarawa, a new emir for Awe is yet to be announced.
A source at the palace of the emir of Lafiya told PREMIUM TIMES that Mr Agwai would be buried today after Friday prayers at the Palace of the Emir of Lafiya.
A statement by Mr Buhari’s spokesperson, Garba Shehu, Thursday evening, said ‘on behalf of the Federal Government, the President extends heartfelt commiserations to Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura, the Lafia Emirate Council, the people of Lafia and Nasarawa State on the passage of the highly respected monarch who ascended the throne of his ancestors in 1974.
“The President assures them of the “fullest sympathy of the Federal Government as they mourn the chairman of the Nasarawa State Council of Emirs and Chiefs and state chairman of Jama’tul Nasril Islam (JNI), who will be fondly remembered for his exemplary leadership and tireless efforts at improving the lives of his people”.
Mr Buhari said the late Mr Agwai devoted himself to championing inter-religious harmony, tolerance, peacebuilding and conflict prevention as well as promoting the role of education in nation building in the course of his remarkable 44 years on the throne.
“As the remains of the late Emir is buried on Friday, the President prays Allah to receive the monarch’s soul and grant him peaceful repose.
“He also prays that Allah will grant the people of Lafia a worthy successor,” the statement highlighted.