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Funke Adedoyin: Buhari, Saraki, Ahmed mourn Kwara lawmaker

 

By Adebayo Olodan and Mumini Abdulkareem

Following the passing of the lawmaker representing Irepodun/Ekiti/Isin/Oke-Ero Federal Constituency of Kwara State, Princess Funke Adedoyin, last Friday, President Muhammadu Buhari, Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki and Kwara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed condoled with leadership and members of National Assembly.

Buhari in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, commiserated with the government and people of Kwara, her family and friends over the sad incident.

He said that her demise had deprived the nation of the wisdom and maturity she had always brought into service.

He added that her unreserved commitment for more representation of women in government and education of children would not be forgotten so easily.

Buhari prayed that God to receive her soul and comfort all her loved ones.

Similarly, Saraki in a statement by his Special Adviser, Media and  Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, in Abuja, described the late Adedoyin as a loyal, hard working and compassionate grassroots mobiliser and politician who spent the greater part of her life in the service of her people and humanity.

He stated that the demise of Adedoyin represents a colossal loss to her primary constituency in Kwara State, the House of Representatives, the 8th National Assembly and the entire country.

He said that the late lawmaker would be sorely missed for her many works of kindness and philanthropy during her lifetime.

Governor Ahmed recalled that Hon. Adedoyin during her stint at the lower chamber attracted federal presence to Irepodun/Isin/Ekiti/Oke-Ero federal constituency and empowered a number of people with a view to uplifting the welfare.

Governor Ahmed commiserated with the immediate family of Adedoyin, her constituents and the entire people of the state over the irreparable loss.

Also, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara said: “the news of the death of Hon. Princess Funke Adedoyin came as a great shock. She was a vibrant lawmaker and dedicated public servant.

“We in the House of Representatives pray that God grants her family, constituents and the people and government of Kwara State the fortitude to bear the loss.”

One of her colleagues at the Green chamber from Kwara, Razaq Atunwa also mourned her thus: “This is a big loss to me, I am feeling a personal loss right now.”

For former minister of sports, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, the news of Adedoyin’s death was saddening, specifically reiterating that her stint as Minister of Youth Development was pivotal to the overall achievements of that ministry.

“Hon. Adedoyin was a woman of excellence who took her service to humanity very serious. Her achievements in all positions she has held, particularly her undeniable achievements in her current position as a Representative stands her out as a hardworking woman who didn’t take people’s trust for granted.”

 


…aide speaks on last moments, unfulfilled dreams

…as family set Oct 11 for burial

 “How and when did it happen?, “This cannot happen at this time,” “Please confirm your report,” “What a huge loss,” these and many more were some of the reactions that trailed the announcement of the passing of a lawmaker representing Irepodun/Ekiti/Isin/Oke-Ero Federal Constituency, Hon Funke Adedoyin.

The Agbamu iron lady had expected 2019 to be a year of great expectations and excitement and the reasons for this was not farfetched.

She had looked forward to the next election with renewed hope and vigour especially on the actualisation of her long held dreams for her constituency some of which had already started unfolding. But that was not to be as her vision and mission for her constituency were cut short by her demise. The news of the passing of Adedoyin came as a rude shock to the Senate President Dr Bukola Saraki, according to some of his aides.

When informed about the sad news, Saraki reportedly exclaimed ‘What, Funke cannot die, not this time’ but it was her time to go and return no more to Kwara, her people, family and constituency.

According to sources, Saraki had planned to see the deceased few weeks ago to solidarise with her on the relapse of her long treated cancer and finalise discussion on some political issues.

Funke, who is the second daughter of foremost Kwara-born industrialist and entrepreneur, Prince Samuel Adedoyin, was five days away from securing a return ticket to the Federal House of Representatives before she was pronounced dead.

She was said to have died at the age of 54 on Friday after about two years battle with cancer.

An aide of the lawmaker, Mrs Falilat Tinu Aliyu confirmed the passing of Princess Adedoyin saying her principal died in an Abuja hospital after returning from treatment abroad.

Earlier, the former Chairman of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Kwara and Kogi chapter, Mrs. Omolola Olobayo confirmed the sad news on the telephone to newsmen.

When the news of Funke’s demise was broken to the father, Prince Adedoyin according to a source present was said to have rescinded to fate, saying, “It is God who giveth and taketh.” He was said to have added that as a Christian, he has no right to query God over the sudden death of his daughter.

The lawmaker’s death was said to have resulted from cancer complications which she has been battling since 2016.

Princess Adedoyin was said to have been cured of the disease but suffered a relapse three months ago which led her to embark on a trip to the United States.

She had since returned to the country and was recuperating in Abuja until her death.

In spite of her health challenges before her demise, Adedoyin was committed to her legislative duties, especially at the Committee level.

Her last known major legislative assignment was during the defence of the 2018 budget estimates of the Nigerian Army.

Her final journey to meet her creator was said to have started three days before the incident after she was reportedly slumped at the Abuja International Airport, the second time in three months, and was hurriedly rushed to the hospital for urgent attention.

Speaking on the last moments of the lawmaker, Mrs Aliyu said, Adedoyin after collecting the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) nomination form in August was planning to arrive Ilorin, the Kwara State capital on Tuesday ahead of the Federal House of Representatives primaries of the PDP scheduled for the following day (Wednesday).

Mrs Aliyu said the lawmaker will be missed for her humanitarian services and her intimate relationship with her aides.

“Princess Adedoyin was a boss that shared in our problems and pains. Despite her tight schedule, she relates with us freely and consistently.

“She was highly passionate about the people of her constituency and she will spare no kobo to achieve that. It was the need to do more for the masses that made her sought re-election into the Federal House of Representatives,” she divulged.

On Adedoyin’s unfulfilled dreams, Aliyu said her principal intended to found her own university to be located in Agbamu which she was said to be working seriously. More importantly, Adedoyin  was determined to facilitate the reconstruction of the Kabba – Ilorin road.

“Ensuring the reconstruction of the Kabba – Ilorin road was her long term ambition despite being discouraged by colleagues who felt it is a daunting task.”

When contacted on the telephone by our reporter last night, an associate of Adedoyin and the Special Adviser on Labour Matters to the Kwara State Governor, Comrade Bisi Fakayode appeared yet to get over the shock of the lawmaker’s death. When he finally offered to speak on what the lawmaker would be remembered for, Fakayode repeated Funke four times before saying in an emotional laden voice that, “Well, she has come, seen and conquered. Within the few years that I knew her, I noticed all her life is devoted towards serving humanity.

“As a minister and member of the Federal House of Representatives, no one can point to a building personally owned by Funke,” he stated.

Efforts to further speak with Fakayode proved abortive as his mobile number was afterward not reachable.

Adedoyin was the Deputy Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Army and headed a sub-committee which undertook a tour of military barracks in the country.

It was gathered that the late lawmaker during the tour of the barracks had complained bitterly about the state of Army barracks across the country and called for urgent measures to address the situation.

Adedoyin’s last known major legislative assignment was during the defence of the 2018 budget estimates of the Nigerian Army.

The deceased was elected into the Green Chamber in 2015 on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), she was however among lawmakers, who dumped the ruling party for the opposition PDP, shortly before the National Assembly went on recess in July.

She had served as Minister of State for Health during the tenure of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Meanwhile, a family source said the burial of the lawmaker has been scheduled tentatively for October 11 in Lagos.

She is survived by his United States based son, Tamilore Dada Adedoyin and his aged father.

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