The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has described the candidate of the 1993 presidential election under the National Republican Convention (NRC), Alhaji Bashir Tofa, as a patriot who wanted to serve his country.
The ACF stated that Tofa, who died in the early hours of Monday, was a founding member of the Forum who invested his time, energy and money during its formative stages but later preferred to stay behind and play an advisory role.
In a statement issued by the ACF’s National Publicity Secretary, Emmanuel Yawe, the Forum described Tofa as a man of many parts, stating that he was sometimes a national politician, community leader or an international businessman.
It stated that his participation in the 1993 presidential election as the candidate of the NRC overshadowed all other things he did.
“Maybe because Moshood Abiola was involved or because it was finally annulled. Every time that election was mentioned, his name just came up.
“It was as if he never did anything in life other than participate in that election. Whatever happened to that election should not be blamed on him, he was as much a victim of military meddlesomeness in politics as Abiola,” the ACF stressed.
In another statement issued by the ACF National Chairman, Chief Audu Ogbeh, the Forum commiserated with the family of the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji as well as the Ibadan Traditional Rulers Councils and Oyo State Government over the demise of the monarch who died at the Intensive Care Unit of the University College Hospital on Sunday.
Ogbe stated that the ACF considered the late monarch as a very progressive traditional ruler who brought progress and stability to Ibadan, the headquarters of the defunct Western Region and a very powerful stool in Yoruba land.
“Ibadan is a traditional Yoruba town which has grown to accommodate the diverse ethnic groups in Nigeria.
“It has a pan Nigeria spirit fostered and nurtured by good men such as Olubadan Adetunji.
“We mourn his departure because Nigeria has a lot to learn from him. If he had lived on, we would have benefitted much more from his wisdom and stability of character,” Ogbe stated.