President Muhammadu Buhari has enjoined Nigerians to imbibe the patriotic commitment of late elder statesman, Allison Ayida, saying that Nigeria needs people like him, for progress and unity of the country.
The president made his position known in a condolence message issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, in Abuja on Friday.
President Buhari recalled Ayida’s decades of public service to his fatherland, urging younger Nigerians and public servants to emulate his uncommon patriotism.
Adesian said: “Nigeria will surely miss his wide experience in public and private service.
“We need people like him and his colleagues, the celebrated super permanent secretaries, who exhibited remarkable commitment to the progress and unity of the country.’’
The president commiserated with the Ayida family, the government and people of Delta State on the transition of the elder statesman.
Buhari said that as the remains of the former federal permanent secretary, political economist, and boardroom guru are interred, he prayed that almighty God would comfort the family, close associates and his admirers.
The President also prayed that God would grant the soul of the octogenarian, who was the fifth Secretary to the Government of the Federation, eternal rest.
Born on June 16, 1930 in today’s Delta State, young Ayida schooled at the King’s College, Lagos, Queen’s College, Oxford, England as well as London School of Economics and Political Science.
Ayida, in particular, a political economist and administrator, rose to become the fifth Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Head of the Civil Service between 1975 and 1977, a rare combination even in those days. Before then, he was an Assistant Secretary in the Ministry of Finance and later Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Economic Development and Reconstruction.