Babatunde Fashola, minister of works and housing, says Abba Kyari, the late chief of staff to the president, paid the supreme price in his service to Nigeria.
In his tribute to Kyari on Sunday, Fashola said the good way Nigerians can honour Kyari’s service and memory is “to continue where he stopped”.
The late chief of staff to the president died on Friday after battling COVID-19.
He contracted the disease on his trip to Germany where he led a government delegation on power late March.
Fashola said Kyari was “much misunderstood” and “often maligned”.
“Wherever you stood then and stand now, let us not forget that Abba was a patriot,” he said.
“He executed President Buhari’s vision with his own single-mindedness. One of his favourite quotes was credited to Jeff Immelt to the effect that “The job looks easy when you are not the one doing it.”
He seemed to take a lot of comfort from these words…
“Like all of us, Abba was flawed but he was not conceited. He was driven by conviction and never shied from an intellectual argument because his intellect was vast.
“Now that he has paid the supreme price in the service of the fatherland one good way we can honour Abba’s service and memory is to continue where he stopped.
“Our most compelling assignment is to make the defeat of COVID-19 an urgent National Assignment to be completed in shortest possible time. I think Abba would love that very much.”
The minister added that ending the outbreak would require “all of us, high and low, to observe existing guidelines”.
“We must now undertake this assignment with a single-mindedness similar to Abba’s execution of his own assignment,” he said.