Adeyeye, Ajulo mourn Aturu
Reacting to Aturu’s death, the minister said: “Bamidele will be sorely missed as a great lawyer and human rights activist, who contributed immensely to the pro-democracy struggle in Nigeria
The Minister of State for Works, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, has described the death of human rights lawyer, Bamidele Aturu, as shocking and devastating.
Adeyeye said: “It never for once occurred to me that we will lose Bamidele this soon.”
Reacting to Aturu’s death, the minister said: “Bamidele will be sorely missed as a great lawyer and human rights activist, who contributed immensely to the pro-democracy struggle in Nigeria.
“The death of Bamidele Aturu is no doubt a sad loss to the entire people of Nigeria, especially the human rights community, and we can only continue to pray, trusting that God in His infinite mercies will grant his soul eternal rest.
“Bamidele Aturu will be remembered for devoting much of his legal practice to representing marginalized or oppressed individuals and groups.
“His death has no doubt created a huge void in the legal profession and the human rights community, and he will be sorely missed.
“It is my prayer that the good Lord will grant Bamidele eternal rest and also grant his entire family, friends and associates the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss.”
Aturu’s colleague in the legal profession, Barrister Kayode ajulo, said his death was more than a rude shock to him.
Ajulo said: “It’s a death too many and once again we’ve lost another committed and genuine activists.
“Bamidele Aturu came to prominence as a freedom fighter against dictatorship and power abuses when, as a member of the National Youth Service Corps, he refused to shake the hand of a military administrator of Niger State, Col. Lawan Gwadabe in 1988 during his NYSC passing out parade declaring that the military had caused great harm to the democratic aspirations of Nigerians.
“This was a time when ASUU was prescribed by the Babangida Military Admnitration.
“He was an advocate for the oppressed and the mighty, he lent his voice for President Jonathan during the health saga of the late President Yaradua. He was in and out of the court to ensure the constitutional desirability of ensuring that President Jonathan then Vice President became Acting President.
“In fact he supported my attempt to commit the Cabinet members of Yaradua’s Federal Executive Council to prison for contempt of court at Federal High Court, Abuja.
“And when the desirable was done, he moved on and in all our conservations thereafter, he never mentioned or complained of not being patronized by President Jonathan.
“We met in London sometimes ago at Ben Tv Station where we were led discussants on “Kayode Ogundamisi’s Politricks” on Nigeria Issues, he remained his ebullient self.
“I remembered raising his NYSC discharge Certificate issue, which he dismissed on the ground that when the time comes the authority will give him his certificate with honour, today he’s dead. His dream died with him.
“I wish President Jonathan had made his dream true, it is however not too late, the desirable could still be done by the President as there is no better time to return his NYSC Certificate with honour than now.
“Bamidele Aturu was a hero and will always remain a hero, a courageous fighter as well as a prayer warrior. A man of simple means. He used all he had to propagate progressivism and egalitarianism even on the pulpit.”