Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, former Presidents – Olusegun Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan – as well as the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, were among the dignitaries that attended the burial of Pa Gabriel Nkanang, father of Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel in Onna Local Government Area of the state.
Other dignitaries at the ceremony were serving and former governors as well as notable traditional leaders.
The 90-year-old Nkanang, who was a devout evangelist of the old Qua Iboe Church, died on December 1, 2019.
Speaking at the funeral service on Saturday, Osinbajo said he was at the ceremony to represent the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and the people of Lagos where the deceased lived for many years before his death.
The VP, who also said he was at the occasion as Udom Emmanuel’s friend, paid a glowing tribute to the late evangelist.
He described the late Nkanang as a devout evangelist, who spent the greater part of his life to preach the gospel and impart virtues to the lives of many.
“Papa was in his lifetime a legendary teacher and headmaster as we heard, who taught thousands of students, many of whom are here to pay tribute to him today.
“But his greatest achievement was in the propagation of the gospel of Jesus Christ, where he planted so many churches, not only in this state and the environs, but in the North-Central zone of Nigeria.
Speaking about the deceased, ex-President Goodluck Jonathan said Nkanang lived a fulfilled life of service to God and humanity.
In his verified personal handle twitter, @GEJonathan, the former president said the deceased, while alive, raised leaders and impacted many lives.
In his remarks, the Chairman of Nigeria Governors Forum, Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, who spoke on behalf of the governors of the 36 states, said Nkanang would be sorely missed.
“We are here for celebration of life; we are not here to mourn our father, not only because he lived a worthy life, but because he raised great children, some of who have gone on to excel and also made him proud.