Governor Abubakar Bello of Niger has congratulated former head of state, Ibrahim Babangida, on his 78th birthday.
A statement by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Mary Berje, in Minna on Saturday described Mr Babangida as an advocate of Nigeria’s unity.
Mr Babangida, who was Nigeria’s head of state between 1985 and 1993, turned 78 on August 17.
Mr Bello said the former president remained a staunch peacemaker and dogged patriot who has remained committed to the corporate existence of the nation.
He said the elder statesman has carved a niche for himself in the annals of Nigeria’s history as an enigmatic leader among various political actors.
Mr Bello commended the former military leader for his positive disposition and outstanding contributions to the progress and development of the country and the state.
“As we all celebrate the legend of our time today, we also pray to Allah to bless his new age, grant him many more years in wisdom and good health to continue to serve Him and humanity,” he said.
He noted that IBB at 78 years has lived a fulfilled life not only as an exceptional and exemplary leader but also as a peacemaker of international repute.
The governor prayed for Allah’s continued blessings on the former president who has left so much to be desired at all times.
Also, the immediate past governor of Niger, Babangida Aliyu, extolled the virtues of Mr Babangida of contributing positively to Nation building.
Mr Aliyu made the remark in Minna.
“Many people will be interested to know about IBB’s birthday because he is an elder statesman who has contributed positively to the development of our country.
“I am happy that he is still alive and healthy, I wish him well at 78.
“We hope he will still live longer because we need him around to continue to contribute to national development,” he said.
He assured he would continue to encourage and support Babangida towards contributing to the development of Nigeria.
“I think IBB is a statesman that we will continue to pray for,” he said.