The Vice President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, on behalf of the presidency, lauded in no small measure, the outstanding qualities of the late interim head of government, Chief Ernest Shonekan at the funeral service of the late octogenarian.
Standing on all existing protocols, VP Osinbajo, commiserated with the Shonekan family, especially Mama Margaret Shonekan, his children and other members of the family.
Prof. Yemi Osinbajo said, Chief Shonekan lived an extraordinary lifestyle in the way he carried and conducted his affairs having excelled in his various fields of endeavours before becoming the Nigerian head of government.
Osinbajo commended the humility and the courteous manner in which the late octogenarian conducted himself.
The VP said, “Chief Shonekan had genuine respect for everyone; and that he lived a life full of generosity.”
Osinbajo emphasized Chief Shonekan’s witty and humorous nature and his personal integrity and reliability; adding that, the fact that he governed Nigeria during the “most turbulent chapters of our nation’s history”, he still gave his best to the country.
The eloquent Nigerian VP, praised Chief Shonekan’s philanthropic gestures as a way of giving back to the country because according to VP Osinbajo, “Chief Shonekan had faith in his country, Nigeria.”
Prof. Yemi Osinbajo again upheld that, Chief Shonekan worked hard to assume the “mantle of an elder statesman” with the calm and dignified way he carried himself as a professional and as a politician.
Osinbajo quoted Chief Shonekan to have said, “if your country needs you, leave all and go and serve.”
Chief Shonekan, a renowned technocrat and the fave of Nigeria’s enterprise, became the head of the interim national government between August 26, 1993, and November 17, 1993; before he was forced out of power in a coup, led by late General Sani Abacha.
Osinbajo enjoined all dignitaries present to embrace the legacy Chief Shonekan left behind, with the words that, “he was an inspiration to the entire black race.”
VP Osinbajo rounded off with the statement that, “May his legacy continue in our memories as we journey in the country, Nigeria.”
Chief Ernest Adegunle Oladeinde Shonekan came, saw and conquered.
He died at a Lagos hospital on 11th of January, 2022 at 85 years of age.
Present at the Friday, February 4, 2022 occasion, were: Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, former president, Goodluck Jonathan, former military head of state, General Yakubu Gowon.
Also present were, state governors, which include: Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos state; Ogun state governor, Dapo Abiodun; and Edo state governor, Godwin Obaseki; former Ogun state governor Senator Ibikunle Amosun and his wife; ex Ogun state governor, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, Sectary to the State Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha; Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; and many other eminent Nigerians too numerous to mention.
Chief Ernest Shonekan, (9th May, 1936 – 11th January, 2022), was laid to rest at the Ebony Vaults, Ikoyi in Lagos state.