I Wish I Could Bring Back My Son But I Cannot, Grieving Tinubu Laments


By Yemi Adebowale

Bereaved former governor of Lagos State and a chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu yesterday went emotional over the death of his first son, Jide, who died of cardiac arrest in Lagos early this week and was buried yesterday, lamenting that he wished he could bring him back.

Tinubu, who issued a formal statement on the passage of the 37-year-old Jide, lamented: “I wish I could bring my son back but I cannot. However, what I can do is to be more caring and helpful to the living as I know this is what Jide would want to become of his passing. Let us all take a lesson from this and think a bit more about our fellow man, our neighbour, our fellow Nigerians. Let us live as we were meant to live with each other in greater peace, compassion and love. If only this can happen, I know my son will be happy.” 

The APC chieftain described late Jide as a highly intelligent person with a vibrant personality and a zest for life.

He said his late son followed his own course and made his own way on his own terms: “Those who knew him could not help but like him. Yet, he was taken away by cardiac arrest when it seemed he had so much life to still live. This is a reminder that we must live each day to its best as none of us know when our last day shall be. Mortality comes upon us all. We have no choice in that but we do have a choice whether we shall be good or bad, just or unjust. Let us all strive toward the best in ourselves.

“Jide lived for so long in London and there he has left behind a darling wife and three precious boys. My wife Remi, and I, have gone to London to be with them at this painful time to support and help them. Please, excuse our absence from Lagos for a while, but it is essential that we are with them. Prayers are being offered and will continue to be offered for the repose of his soul. I have suffered a grave loss that no parent would like to bear. As a father, I must spend time putting my arms around the family he has left behind.”

Tinubu also urged Nigerians to seek a lesson from every loss: “Your reaction to my son’s passing has taught me that we can be a people of profound love and humanity when we want to be. People of every tribe, region, faith and every political affiliation have expressed their sympathy and extended to me the embrace of a brother or sister. Even those who don’t agree with me politically have shown strong support and care indistinguishable from that of my associates. This says so much about the innate goodness in all of us. For no matter what, we are not foes or enemies. We are all of one human stock, a single nation, one family.”

The former Lagos State governor expressed thanks and deep appreciation to all who had demonstrated sympathy and expressed condolences over the loss of his eldest son: “I want to especially thank President Muhammadu Buhari, VP Yemi Osinbajo, the state governors, distinguished senators particularly Senate President Bukola Saraki, members of the House of Representatives, APC leaders and members and indeed all Nigerians. I thank the traditional rulers for their display of support.

Tinubu added: “Again, as we are away from Lagos, we thank you for the love you have shown and ask that you not only show it to us but to each other. Please continue to pray for him wherever you are.”