President Muhammadu Buhari has offered his condolences to the family of former Deputy Senate President, Ibrahim Mantu, who died on Tuesday in Abuja at the age of 74.
The condolence message which was contained in a statement by his spokesperson, Femi Adesina, on Tuesday in Abuja commiserated with leaders and members of the National Assembly, friends and political associates of the deceased.
According to the president, Mantu dedicated most of his life to the service of his people and his legacy of reconciliation and promotion of peaceful co-existence will always be remembered, especially in bringing more harmony in his state and the country at large. He further prayed for the repose of the soul of the departed.
Governor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong in a statement issued by the state’s director of Press and Public Affairs, Makut Macham, on Tuesday in Jos described Mantu as a grassroots politician who did everything within his power to serve and empower the people.
“The news of the demise of the elder statesman and erudite politician was received with a heavy heart, recalling his enormous contributions to the socio-political development of the state and the nation at large.
“The late senator earned his place in Nigerian politics through active involvement and with a great connection to the youths whom he mentored not only in politics, but in his service to humanity,” he said.
“Until his death, he continued to avail the government of his wealth of experience and knowledge in running the affairs of the people,” he said.
The governor said the state would remain grateful for his political representation as a two-term senator representing Plateau Central Zone where he emerged deputy senate president. He noted that Mantu did a lot to project and protect the interests of Plateau State at the red chambers and ensured that Plateau citizens were represented at various levels of the federal administration.
Lalong condoled with the widow of the deceased, his children, people of Pyem Chiefdom and the entire state over the death of the late political leader and also prayed for God to forgive his sins and grant his soul eternal rest.
A former President of the Senate, David Mark, in a statement signed by his media aide, Paul Mumeh, on Tuesday in Minna, also expressed shock and sadness over the demise of Mantu, describing the death a devastating loss to the political class.
He described him as a flamboyant leader, who brought panache, character and sagacity to the political space.
The former Senate President said, “In Mantu, I have lost a friend, brother and compatriot who believed in the sanctity of our unity and ideals of nationhood.
“Mantu played a politics of inclusiveness, fairness, equity and justice. He was a politician who built bridges of understanding across the length and breadth of Nigeria.
“He was a political leader of high repute. He stood to be counted when it mattered. His death is indeed one too many. He will surely be missed.
“I am however consoled that Mantu lived an exemplary life worthy of emulation.”
He prayed that God in His infinite mercies to grant the deceased eternal rest and his family the fortitude to bear the loss.
Also, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, on Tuesday in Abuja, described the late Mantu, as a “pillar in the PDP,” who could not be forgotten.
Ologbondiyan said the PDP was devastated and inconsolable by the death of one of its leading elders and a member of its Board of Trustees (BoT).
“Sen. Mantu was a highly resourceful leader, an excellent lawmaker, exemplary democrat and dazzling political mobiliser; a very humble and detribalised statesman, who spent his life in innumerable sacrifices towards the unity, stability and economic development of our dear fatherland,’’ he said.
Ologbondiyan noted that late Mantu brought his love for the nation, as well as his skills to bear in the Senate, where he served as chairman, Senate committee on information, and deputy senate president.
“His political dexterity as the Chairman of Joint National Assembly Constitution Review Committee from 2001 to 2003 and from 2003 to 2007, laid the strong foundation for successful reviews of the constitution to reflect the aspirations of Nigerians.
“Mantu was a pillar in the PDP and our party will never forget his sacrifices to ensure the success and growth of the PDP at all levels.
“Above all, Senator Mantu was a good man, a God-fearing soul, who spared nothing in ensuring the wellbeing of others above personal pursuits.
“Mantu’s death is indeed a big blow to our party, but we draw solace in the fact that he lived a fulfilled life and made impart in his calling as a patriot,”Ologbodiyan said.
In honor of Mantu, the national publicity secretary said the meeting of its National Working Committee (NWC) earlier slated for Tuesday had been rescheduled for Wednesday
“Our party commiserates with Mantu’s family, the PDP fold in Plateau state, the people of Plateau Central as well as the entire state.
“The PDP also prays for God to grant eternal rest to the faithful departed and to the bereaved, the fortitude to bear this huge loss,” he added.