Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State on Friday commiserated with his counterparts in Oyo and Sokoto States on the passing of two serving Commissioners in their respective states.
The late commissioners are Kehinde Ayoola, who was in charge of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources in Oyo State and Surajo Gatawa, who held sway at the Ministry of Lands and Housing in Sokoto.
Ayoola died at 55, while Gatawa 62.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, in Asaba, the Governor sympathised with the families, the governments and people of both states on the passing of the two serving commissioners.
He said that the deceased commissioners had a rich history of service to their states and the nation, adding that they would be remembered for their good deeds while alive.
“The late Kehinde Ayoola was a Speaker of Oyo State House of Assembly in the Fourth Republic and served the people well before emerging as Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources in the state.
“He served his state and country diligently and will be remembered for his highly cerebral, versatile and patriotic disposition. His death remains a colossal loss to family, friends and the good people of Oyo State,” he said.
For Gatawa, Okowa described him as “an outstanding grassroots politician’’ and said that he would be sorely missed by his people whom he served sincerely over the years.
“As an astute grassroots politician, who grew from the ranks to attain political heights in the state and country, Surajo was indeed a man of the people and worked so hard to better their lots.
“He served diligently as a Councilor in Sabon Birni Local Government Area between 1988 and 1989 and Chairman of the local government area from 1991 to 1993.
“Due to his sterling performances in office, he was elected member of the House of Representatives, representing Isa/Sabon Birni constituency, from 1999 to 2007,” he said.
“On behalf of my family, the government and people of Delta, I commiserate with my brother Governors, Mr Seyi Makinde and Rt. Hon. Aminu Tambuwal, on the unfortunate and shocking passing of two serving commissioners in their various states.
“Their deaths will remain colossal losses not just to their families, state and country, but to all those whose lives they have affected in several positive ways.
“It is my prayer and that of the people of Delta, that afflictions like this shall not arise again,” he stated, adding that God would give the governors and families of the deceased, the courage to bear the losses.
According to him, the commissioners’ demise came at a time when their services were most needed in their respective states.