From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Umar, son of Labour Party National Chairman, has revealed that his father, Abdukadir Abdulsalam slumped on his bed and died instantly before him in the early hours of yesterday.
Explaining the circumstances that led to his death in an interview with Daily Sun,Umar said his father was hale and hearty before the tragic incident, noting that he even travelled to Minna, his home state, on Christmas day to visit his grandparents and returned to Abuja after the trip.
He described the late party chairman as honest, accommodating and detribalised, adding that the entire family would miss his counsel, support, assistance, and father figure.
“On Monday, we chatted and I even went to the market to buy some things for him. He was just full of life. This morning (Tuesday) he tried reaching me, but I was asleep. He sent for me, but before getting close to him, I saw him slump on the bed and die. He was not sick the previous night, even though he had visited his doctor last week. As I speak with you, we are already taking his remains to Minna for burial.
“We will surely miss him. He was an honest man and my role model. He taught me how to be independent and survive on my own. He taught me to be patient with people and how to go along with people. Until his death, he never kept malice with anybody. He never raised his voice on anybody. He carried everybody along irrespective of who was involved. Even as a Muslim, most of his friends and associates were Christians and they can testify to how liberal and free he was with people. We will miss him because he had a very cordial relationship with every member of his family. I called the granddaughter; she has not stopped crying,” Umar said.
His bosom friend and National Secretary of CUPP, Chief Peter Ameh, described Abdulsalam as an icon and highly detribalised person who lived a life of selflessness.
Ameh in a statement ‘Tribute to my friend, colleague and brother’ described the deceased as a great teacher, mentor, leader and an inspiration to many.
Quoting Martin Luther King, Jr, Ameh said “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
Writing further, former President, Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC), said: “We fought side by side, so I can testify of your undying love and faith in our country, o great A.A Salam. I know first-hand of your fiery bravery and valour. You never shied away from confronting evil and injustice. You took the battle to villains and pretenders. You loved all but hated injustice.
“You served God and loved humanity with all your heart. You knew the Lord and appreciated His creatures whether they are Muslims, Christians or of other faiths. You were knowledgeable, exposed, experienced, widely travelled and tolerant.
“You were comfortable with all well-meaning people whether Muslims, Christians, young or old. You were a great teacher, mentor and leader. You inspired many, only bigots and those blindfolded with clannishness and nepotism failed to learn from you.”
“You were a great icon. We felt your love, passion and commitment, drank from it, me, most of all, thanks for the love we shared. Thanks for trusting me. Thanks for all you were to me. Adieu! My dear friend, brother and father figure.”