President Muhammadu Buhari has felicitated former President Olusegun Obasanjo on his 83rd birthday, on March 5, congratulating him for a life of courage, dedication and service to Nigeria, Africa, and humanity in general.
The President’s congratulatory message was conveyed in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, in Abuja on Wednesday.
Mr Buhari joined family members, friends and associates of the former president in celebrating the milestone.
The president said Mr Obasanjo’s commitment to Nigerian nationhood remains outstanding and commendable, while also underscoring his sacrifices for the continent, including standing up for democracy in many countries.
He prayed that the almighty God would grant him long life, good health and strength to keep serving the nation and the continent.
Also, the Northern Governors Forum, in a congratulatory message signed by its Chairman and Governor of Plateau, Simon Lalong, to Mr Obasanjo, praised the former president for his visionary and patriotic service to Nigeria, the African Continent and the world.
In the message that was issued on Wednesday in Jos by his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Makut Macham, Mr Lalong described Mr Obasanjo as a leader who had given his best to the nation and humanity in the various positions and responsibilities he held over the years.
He also lauded Obasanjo’s commitment to the growth of democracy, good governance and human rights, which he had pursued in and out of office and under different platforms across the globe.
The chairman urged the former president not to relent in offering his wealth of wisdom and experience to the present leaderships at all levels, especially as Nigeria continued its march toward consolidating democracy and the fight against corruption and insecurity.
He wished him more years of good health, God’s wisdom and protection as he continued serving Nigeria, Africa and the world.
Mr Obasanjo was born on March 5, 1937.
He served as a military head of state from 1976 to 1979 and later as president of Nigeria from 1999 to 2007.
In a statement by his media aide, Olisa Ifeajika, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, commended Mr Obasanjo for his patriotic and unrelenting service to the nation.
He said Mr Obasanjo’s contributions to the peace and unity of Nigeria would remain laudable, and congratulated him for remaining an immutable voice in the affairs of the nation.
The governor noted that Nigeria recorded the best economic reforms during the administration of Mr Obasanjo.
Mr Okowa said the former president revolutionised the banking and communication sectors.
He said Mr Obasanjo introduced banking consolidation and pension reforms and revitalised the telecoms industry through the Global System for Mobile Telecommunications (GSM).
“On the occasion of your 83rd birth anniversary on Thursday, March 5, 2020, I write to heartily rejoice with you and your family on behalf of the Government and people of Delta.
“In the past 83 years of a life of outstanding accomplishments and great personal fulfilment, you have served our nation at the highest levels with an uncommon sense of patriotism and unwavering dedication.
“You also ensured the peace and unity of our nation when you fought in the war to keep Nigeria one.
“Till date, you have continued to give yourself to the service of our fatherland through your nationalistic ideals.
“As a country, Nigeria benefited immensely from your leadership at various times as key infrastructure and economic reforms were the hallmarks of your administration.
“I join your family, friends and well-wishers to thank the Almighty God for your life and to pray that He continues to bless you with robust health and provide you with His guidance, protection and enduring provision.
“I wish you, our dear father, a well-deserved 83rd birth anniversary celebration,” he said.
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