From Layi Olanrewaju, Ilorin
Former Senate President Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki has commiserated with Kwarans over the passing of Joel Afolabi Ogundeji, who served as Deputy Governor of Kwara between 2003 and 2011.
Saraki, in a statement made available by his media aide, Mr Olu Onemola, on Thursday, described the death of the late politician, civil servant and educationist as a great loss to the state, particularly at this time, when the wisdom and experience of senior stakeholders were needed to steer the ship of the state.
‘I am extremely sad and heartbroken to learn about the passing of Joel Ogundeji, who served as Deputy Governor, in the eight years of my tenure as Governor of Kwara State.
‘Throughout his life, which was dedicated to the service of his community, our state and the country, Ogundeji was a steadfast, reliable and experienced leader and educator, whose commitment to the development of our state and its people was undeniable in both his words and action.
‘During our time in the Governor’s Office, Ogundeji’s advice, particularly in dealing with issues concerning the bureaucracy, education sector, and traditional institutions were invaluable. He was also a diligent and loyal deputy, who despite his age, kept up with the fast-paced with which the administration moved in tackling the challenges of the time.
‘As we mourn the passing of this great Kwaran, I pray that Almighty God comforts his wife, Mrs Comfort Ogundeji, and his children; the people of Iwo in Isin LGA; and the entire government and people of Kwara state. He will be dearly missed,’ Saraki said in the statement.
Meanwhile, an industrialist and Group Managing Director/CEO of KAM Holdings Ltd, Dr Kamoru Yusuf, has described the death of the former Deputy Governor of Kwara State, Baba Joel Ogundeji, as shocking and saddening.
Dr Yusuf in a condolence message issued on Thursday commiserated with the entire Isin Traditional Council, government and people of Kwara State over the great loss.
According to him, ‘Baba Ogundeji was a compassionate politician whose love for peace, unity and grassroots development was outstanding and encouraging in the face of numerous communal misunderstandings.
‘My last discussions with Baba was based on the growth and development of our community and humanity at large. I will miss his wise counsel and fatherly support.
‘My heart and prayers are with my kinsmen in Isin land, Kwarans and humanity in general over the colossal loss.
‘May God repose his soul and comfort the families he left behind,’ Dr Kamoru Yusuf said