Osinbajo: Ajibola Was My Mentor, Served Nigeria with Integrity

Osinbajo: Ajibola Was My Mentor, Served Nigeria with Integrity

Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) has said that the late former Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Prince Bola Ajibola (SAN) was a role model and a mentor as well as a man of uncommon integrity who served Nigeria selflessly.

Osinbajo who spoke at the interment of the late elder statesman in Abeokuta, was accompanied by his wife, Dolapo and was received by Ajibola’s first son, Segun, at the premises of the Islamic Mission for Africa – an institution established by the former World Court Judge and where he was also interred.

The vice president joined dignitaries at the event, including former President Olusegun Obasanjo and the former Governor of Ogun State, Chief Segun Osoba as well as the  Deputy Governor of Ogun State,  Noimot Salako-Oyedele, according to a statement from his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande.

The vice president also met with the wife of the departed elder statesman, Alhaja Amatulaye Ajibola and their children, expressing his condolences and offering prayers.

On what he would remember the late Ajibola for, the vice president described him as a man of integrity who had a deep commitment to the unity and progress of Nigeria.

He added that the former Nigerian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom was “an excellent role model.”

“He was a man who believed that the worth of a person is what he is able to give back to society and he demonstrated it throughout his own life. So, I think it is a life that ought to be celebrated and it is a life that is an example to us all,“ Osinbajo said.

 “Something he demonstrated while I worked with him was a belief in this nation, a belief in our country as a united nation. But more importantly, is that one could serve in the public domain with integrity and with altruism. He demonstrated this all his life.

“First, he did not accept to be paid a salary when he was Attorney-General. At some point in his life, he told me that he wanted to establish a university, which turned out to be the Crescent University and that he was going to sell everything that he owned to establish that university.

“I recall that he sold all the houses that he owned and several other things to be able to establish Crescent University. This place where we stand is also a place he established for primary education and secondary education,” the vice president said.

Earlier during a special prayer session, the Osinbajo spoke about his personal feelings and interaction with the late elder statesman.

“I am sad that he is gone. As Segun the first son said, I am actually ‘his first son.’ It is really a great honour to have known him and to have been mentored by him.

“It was when I worked for him that I gained the knowledge and experience that eventually helped me when I became Attorney-General in Lagos State.

“I used to tell my former Attorney General colleagues back then that none of them had the sort of experience and exposure I had because I learnt so much from Bola Ajibola for five years before I became Commissioner for Justice in Lagos State,” he added.

While emphasising the significance of Ajibola’s contributions while alive, he said: “We can’t talk about him briefly; we would have to keep going on and on. I’m thankful that I knew him. He was not only known in Nigeria but internationally.

“He was an International Arbitrator even before he became Attorney General of the Federation and then later a World Court Judge. Even being a World Court Judge doesn’t come through appointment but rather through election by the United Nations.

“We are thankful to God for all his achievements during his lifetime. We pray for his wife, the children, all of us, that we will be comforted and that all of us will live long,” Osinbajo noted.

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