The national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu, has described the late Ismaila Isa Funtua as a rare individual of immense talents, abilities and generosity.
In a statement issued by his media office Tuesday, Mr Tinubu said the death of the newspaper publisher and businessman is a saddening national loss.
“We spoke but two days before, as we often do,” said Mr Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor.
“He spoke vibrantly, with his trademark logic and deep knowledge. We ended our conversation agreeing to resume soon again. There was no indication that this would be our last talk.”
Mr Funtua died Monday night while keeping a doctor’s appointment, family sources said.
President Muhammadu Buhari and former vice president Atiku Abubakar are among those who have paid tributes to the late industrialist.
Mr Tinubu said he knew Mr Isa-Funtua for “many years.”
“Mallam Funtua loved our nation with uncompromising passion having served Nigeria with dedication and commitment at different times in many important capacities,” he continued.
“He wanted the best for the country and its people and worked diligently in his private capacity to advance the course of Nigeria.
“As a long-time friend, associate and in-law of President Muhammadu Buhari, he served as a strong buttress of support for the president and for his progressive administration.
“I commiserate with President Buhari at this time for we have suffered the loss of another person of great intellect and extraordinary character. Our national family mourns deeply because of this unexpected departure, May Allah give our President the added strength and grace to overcome this loss.
“I mourn with the immediate and extended Funtua family who have lost a father, patriarch and much more.
“My condolences to Governor Aminu Bello Waziri of Katsina State and the Funtua Community.
“We have lost too many outstanding Nigerians in such a short time. We cannot question why for the will of Almighty Allah is sovereign and supreme.”