Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
The Federal Government has commenced the burial plans of late former Vice President, Dr. Alex Ekwueme, who died on November 19, 2017, in a London hospital.
Addressing newsmen yesterday, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, who chairs the burial committee, said it is to ensure that the late elder statesman gets a a befitting burial.
He was represented by the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Senator Chris Ngige, at the briefing.
“The death of Alex Ekwueme is, indeed, a painful loss, not only to his family but to our great nation Nigeria. His life was dedicated to the service of our beloved country Nigeria.
“And, as the military tribunal panel stated, after he and other leaders were detained as a result of the military coup that sacked the civilian government on December 31, 1983 that, ‘Dr. Ekwueme left politics much poorer than he entered it,’ and has also stated that to ask for more from him was to set a standard in public life which even saints could not meet.”
Mustapha assured that governments at the federal and South East levels would be fully represented.
“We also urge all individuals and professional groups whose lives and interests were touched in one way or the other, by our departed statesman, to be part of the burial ceremonies as we pay Dr. Alex Ekwueme our last respects.”
The final funeral programme, as released by the SGF’s office shows, that tomorrow, there will be memorial service by 2:00pm at Cathedral Church of Christ Marina, Lagos while Evening of Tributes is scheduled for 5:00pm, same day, at The Landmark, Oniru.
On Saturday, at 5:00pm, a memorial service will hold at St. Marylebone Parish Church, London, W1.
On Sunday, January 28, there will be another Evening of Tributes at the International Conference Centre, Abuja. The following day, there will be Parade of Honour at the Presidential Wing Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja. The body will then depart immediately to Enugu and will be received by the South East governors at the Akanu Ibiam International national Airport, Enugu.
In Enugu, there will be Service of Songs at Cathedral Church of the Good Shepherd, Independence Layout and on January 31st, there will be South East Zone Commendation Ceremonies by 10am at Okpara Square.
The final funeral service will be held at St. John the Divine Church, Oko, Anambra State, at 11:00am.