President Muhammadu Buhari on Tusday said he received the news of the death of a great statesman and former Head of the Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Adegunle Oladeinde Shonekan “with profound sadness.”
According to a statement by Presidential Spokesperson, Femi Adesina: “On behalf of the Federal Government, the President extends deepest condolences to Chief Shonekan’s wife, Margaret, loved ones, as well as the government and people of Ogun State.
“As an internationally-respected statesman, President Buhari affirms that, with courageous wisdom, Chief Shonekan left his flourishing business career to become the Head of Government, at a delicate time when the country needed someone of his calm mien and pedigree to save the ship of state from sinking.
“The President notes that Chief Shonekan demonstrated to all that the love for country and commitment to her development, peace and unity transcend the trappings of office and the transient nature of political power.
“President Buhari believes that Nigeria owes a great debt to Chief Shonekan, the peacemaker, who even at the twilight of his life time never stopped believing and working for a prosperous and democratic country.
“The President prays that the memory of the departed Head of Government will remain a blessing to Nigeria even as he finds perfect peace with Almighty God.”
Meanwhile, Former President Dr, Goodluck Jonathan, has expressed sadness over the news of the passing on of former head of the Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan who died Tuesday at the age of 85.
In a condolence message to his family and the Government of Ogun State, Dr. Jonathan described him as “an elder statesman, well-loved for his sincerity and sense of purpose.”
The former President further said: “As a leader, Chief Shonekan was well respected because of the enormous goodwill he brought into governance. He was a compassionate and determined administrator, a peacemaker and bridge builder who stepped in to lead the nation at a very difficult time in the history of its political evolution.
“Before he assumed office as the head of the Interim National Government in 1993, Chief Shonekan had become a boardroom guru, having established himself as a foremost industrialist and one of the leaders of the business world.
“He left enduring legacies, part of which was his considerable effort towards mainstreaming the private sector in the development drive of the nation, especially with the institutionalisation of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), which he founded.
He will be remembered for his great wisdom, peaceful disposition, the goodwill he extended to all as well as his significant contributions to the growth the economy of the nation.”