he trio of Ahmad Lawan, Nigeria’s Senate president; Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and former Senate President Bukola Saraki have expressed sadness over the death of Dr Joseph Wayas, a former president of the Nigerian Senate.
TheNewsGuru.com (TNG) reports Lawan, Gbajabiamila and Saraki expressed sadness over the passing of Wayas in separate statements released on Thursday.
The President of the Senate, Lawan sent his condolences to the family of Wayas, who died on Thursday. He commiserated with the family of Senator Wayas, the Government and People of Cross River State, friends and political associates of the late elder statesman.
He described the death of Senator Wayas as a great loss for Nigeria.
“Senator Joseph Wayas was a great lawmaker and political leader who served his country and people with dedication and integrity.
“As the Senate President in the Second Republic, Senator Wayas led the upper chamber with competence and passion. He was a great symbol of his political era.
“Senator Wayas continued to contribute to nation-building, democracy and socio-economic development of Nigeria even after he left public office in 1983.
“He played a significant role as Deputy Chairman of the 1994-95 National Constitutional Conference and took part in many other national assignments.
“Nigeria will sorely miss his wealth of experience,” Lawan said
The Senate President prayed to God to grant Senator Wayas’ gentle soul a sweet repose and to his loved ones the fortitude to bear his loss.
Meanwhile, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Gbajabiamila expressed sadness over the demise of Wayas, who served as the third President of the Senate from 1979 to 1983.
Gbajabiamila, while condoling the government and people of Cross River State over the loss of the elder statesman, noted that his contributions to the deepening of democracy in the country can not be overemphasized.
While praying for the repose of the soul of the elder statesman, the Speaker enjoined the family, friends and the people of Cross River State to take solace in the fact that the ex-President of the Senate, a founding member of the defunct All People’s Party (APP), contributed his part to the political development of Nigeria.
On his part, Saraki noted that Wayas was President of the Senate while his father, Dr. Olusola Saraki served as Senate Leader between 1979 and 1983.
He recalled how Wayas used to visit their home when he was much younger, revealing that he consulted with the late Wayas regularly on issues relating to the running of the Senate when he was Senate president.
“My prayers are with the Wayas family over the passing of Dr. Joseph Wayas, who was the President of the Senate while my father, Dr. Olusola Saraki, served as Senate Leader between 1979 and 1983.
“I remember when I was younger, whenever Oloye used to visit Dr. Wayas, or Dr. Wayas came to our home on visits, he always had a knack for wanting to ensure that everyone was carried along in the solutions to the problems of the day.
“During my time as Senate President, knowing fully well how closely he and my father worked, based on his experience, I consulted with him regularly on issues relating to the running of the Senate. He was a guest at a few of our anniversary events in the 8th Senate.
“This is why, today, as we mourn the passing of this great statesman, experienced legislator, and people-centered politician, I thank Almighty God and his family for sharing him with us. I also commiserate with the people of Cross River State over Dr. Wayas’s demise, and pray for strength for his family, friends, political associates, and supporters,” Saraki stated.
TNG reports Wayas died in a London hospital on Thursday, aged 80.