President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed sadness over the demise of his longtime friend Malam Isma’ila Isa Funtua.
Funtua passed away on Monday, aged 78 with Buhari in a statement by his media aide, Garba Shehu, saying the development has created a huge gap in his life.
“Buhari received with deep sadness on Monday evening information on the passing of his longtime friend and associate, Funtua, who was Life Patron of International Press Institute and Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN),” a tweet from Buhari’s aide read.
“Buhari believes the demise of the publisher and businessman has created a huge gap as Funtua consistently stood by him in his political journey.”
The Nigerian leader while condoling with the late entrepreneur’s family, prayed God to grant them the fortitude to bear the loss.
He was born in Funtua, Katsina State, and a pioneer student of the Federal Training Centre, Kaduna.
Funtua, who was the Minister of Water Resources in the defunct Second Republic, established the Democrat Newspapers during the military era in Nigeria.
Also, he was trained as an administrative officer at the Institute of Administration, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria as well as an administrator at Manchester University in the UK.
The late Funtua worked as the Katsina Native Authority as an Administrative Officer and later served in many ministries in the defunct Northern Region Equally, the Kastina-born entrepreneur was a Manager of the United Nigerian Textile Company, Kaduna.