More eminent Nigerians Wednesday joined in mourning the passing away of former Plateau State Governor and pioneer National Chairman of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Solomon Lar. Lar, 80, died yesterday in a hospital in the United States.
Amaechi: It’s a tragic loss
In a condolence message to his Plateau State counterpart, Chief Jonah Jang, Rivers State Governor Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, expressed sadness over the death of Lar, whom he described as a complete party man.
Amaechi, in a statement by his spokesman, David Iyofor, described the death of the elder statesman as another big tragic loss to the country.
“Chief Solomon Lar was a true, fine patriot who served his fatherland diligently and wholeheartedly. He was a very courageous Nigerian who spoke against misrule, tyranny and impunity in the country when it was convenient for most politicians to keep quiet; and very dangerous to speak out. He displayed a brand of courage that is rare to find amongst today’s politicians.
“As the first chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), he was in the forefront of laying a strong foundation for the democratic rule we presently enjoy. He was a complete party man, thorough and effective. He was one of the finest of his generation,” he said.
He was the last of the old brigade, says Obi
Anambra State Governor, Mr. Peter Obi, said he was shocked by the death of Lar and condoled with the family, the government and people of Plateau State on the death.
“Chief Solomon Lar was among the last of the old brigade of Nigerian politicians and an elder statesman in every sense of the word, who contributed his bit to the progress and development of Nigeria. With sound democratic credentials, he was part of the development of our democracy and will be missed by the country at large,” he said.
Obi who further described Lar as a “Lion of Democracy,” said that his only fault, if a fault at all, was that sometimes he was consumed by the strength of his conviction which is usual with men of strong character, and this clearly marked him out as one of the role models in contemporary Nigeria”.
Uduaghan: History will be kind to Lar
Delta State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, has said history will be kind to Lar.
Uduaghan, who spoke through his press secretary, Felix Ofou, said the late former governor belonged to a group of select elder statesmen who lived entirely for the service of the nation.
He also described the former governor as a politician who believed in the unity of the PDP and Nigeria, seeking always the good of all.
According to him, the PDP and Nigeria will continue to hold in high esteem the many positive virtues which stood out the late politician from many others of his generation.
Imoke expresses regrets
Cross River State Governor, Senator Liyel Imoke, has expressed deep regrets over the death of the pioneer national chairman of the, PDP.
He said it was painful that the elder statesman whose fatherly counsel and wisdom had severally helped pull the country through during its critical challenges, while he was alive, was no more.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Christian Ita, the governor described the death of Lar as a huge loss to Nigeria, the PDP and particularly Plateau State.
According to Imoke, “His death has added yet to the depleting list of our great statesmen. His death is not only a huge loss to our party, but to Plateau State and Nigeria as a whole.”
‘Lar will be sorely missed’
Reacting to the death of Lar, Kogi State Governor, Captain Idris Wada, described his passage as a great loss to the country.
Wada said in a statement that given his invaluable contributions to national development, the late Lar would be missed.
“Our heart here in Kogi State goes to the immediate family of the late Chief Lar, the good people of Plateau State and the country in general,” he added.
Suswam: Lar was a great patriot, bridge builder
Benue State Governor, Mr. Gabriel Suswam, has said that the departure of Lar has created a leadership vacuum in the politics of the nation, especially the North-central geopolitical zone.
The governor described the former governor of Plateau State as a rare leader whose interest in politics was always to fight for the cause of the less privileged and the down trodden hence he was referred to as the
The late Lar, Suswam recalled, sacrificed his entire life to the service of the people and offered selfless service in all the political positions he occupied either as member of the House of Representatives, governor of Plateau State, Minister of Police Affairs or as pioneer national chairman of the PDP.
He described the late Chief Lar as a bridge builder who related with every Nigerian irrespective of religion or ethnic background and urged the current generation of Nigerian politicians to imbibe the leadership attributes of the departed leader, such as selflessness, humility, consensus building and commitment to national unity.
Tapgun: We’ve lost a political giant
One of Lar’s successors, Ambassador Fidelis Tapgun, also mourned him, saying with his death, Plateau State and Nigeria have lost a giant.
“We lost a political giant, particularly in the Middle Belt. It is unfortunate. He is the mother hen who usually covered us, particularly in Plateau State. We will miss his fatherly role,” he said.