The immediate past Governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, has died at age 70 after battling coronavirus-related symptoms for a month.
Ajimobi, who was governor from 2011 to 2019, was named the Deputy National Chairman (South) of the ruling All Progressives Congress last month but never resumed.
The former governor was hospitalised at First Cardiologist and Cardiovascular Consultants Hospital, Lagos on June 2, 2020.
He was said to have tested negative for COVID-19 but the illness had caused his health to deteriorate.
Ajimobi’s wife, Florence, had earlier been hospitalised with her husband. She was, however, discharged.
He was said to have been confirmed positive earlier and was managing the situation at home before the illness worsened and he had to go to a hospital.
Like other VIPs, he was said to have opted for private treatment rather than a public facility after his condition worsened.
A source close to the family said the former governor had diabetes and other ailments.
A statement signed by Buhari’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, said that the President “commiserates with the family of the former governor, who served the country as a senator in 2003 before winning the governorship election in 2011, remaining constant in his progressive views, and working assiduously for the creation of All Progressives Congress.”
Tinubu, on his part, said: “With his departure, Nigeria has lost an outstanding statesman and one of its most able politicians.
Our party, the APC, has lost one of its leading lights; the Yoruba race and Oyo State have lost a favourite son; I have lost a dedicated friend, brother and ally.”
Governor Dapo Abiodun said: “Senator Ajimobi was a phenomenal public servant and business entrepreneur. He broke the second-term jinx in the governance of his state and had served at the Senate as a principal officer, and deputy minority whip creditably before attaining that height. He impacted on both law-making and executive arms in a manner that history cannot forget.”
The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has also commiserated with Ajimobi’s family.
NGF Chairman and Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, in a condolence message he issued on behalf of his group, said members had hoped Ajimobi would recover from the lung surgery he recently had.
Fayemi said: “It is important to note here that I have personally followed developments since news of his lung surgery broke and when he showed signs of recovery, I was happy.
“However, our hopes sank a bit once it was said that he had slipped into a coma, but we prayed and continued to hope that he got out of coma and recovered.”