President Bola Tinubu on Wednesday, eulogised the late Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, describing him as a fearless fighter, brother, confidant and political soulmate.
In a personally signed statement expressing his grief on the passing of the Governor, Tinubu said, “Today, I mourn a fighter and fearless defender of truth and the masses…brother, confidant, political soulmate, and the Executive Governor of Ondo State.”
“Rotimi was a man of ideas and action. While he was with us, he taught us the power of action and service.
“In Ondo State, where he had the honour to serve as the governor over the past six years, he served his people with absolute loyalty, dedication, and forthrightness,” said the President.
Akeredolu, aged 67, died on Wednesday morning after a prolonged battle with prostate cancer, the state government confirmed Wednesday.
The state Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mrs Bamidele Ademola-Olateju, announced the governor’s death in a statement saying, “Mr. Governor peacefully departed from this world in the early hours of today, Wednesday, December 27, 2023.”
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, ex-president of the Nigerian Bar Association and ex-Attorney General of Ondo State, he was a second-term governor expected to conclude his tenure in 2024.
In his tribute titled “I mourn my fearless brother, Rotimi Akeredolu,’ Tinubu said:
“Rotimi has played his role well and left us untimely. We will never see his likes again. Let me tell the people of Ondo State that I am grieving with you. We will honour Rotimi’s memory and make sure his legacy of service is never forgotten.
“In my grief and sadness, I have telephoned his wife, Betty, and Acting Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa to commiserate with them and urge them to take heart over this national tragedy.
“Governor Akeredolu was not just a friend and associate, the departed leader was a brother and a soulmate. His death is a blow to our governing APC and the progressive family as we are diminished by it.
“I hope that his successor Aiyedatiwa will hold steadfast to the vision of governance left by this towering political leader.”