The Senate, yesterday, requested the Federal Government to immortalise the late former vice president, Dr. Alex Ekwueme, by renaming the Federal Polytechnic, Oko or other key federal institution or assets after him.
This, the Senate said, was to appreciate innumerable and patriotic contributions of Ekwueme to the social, economic, and political development of Nigeria during his lifetime.
That was even as more tributes poured in for the late politician from across the country yesterday.
The Senate’s resolution was made sequel to a motion, “the passing on of former Vice President, Dr. Alex Ifeanyichukwu Ekwueme, GCON (1932-2017)” raised under Order 43 of the Senate Standing Rule on matter of urgent national importance by the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu (PDP Enugu West).
Ekweremadu, while leading debate on the motion, said “the late elder statesman was an intellectual giant and consummate professional, who pioneered the business of architecture in modern Nigeria and paid his dues to the social, economic, and political development of Nigeria”.
He noted that the late Ekwueme was a bridge builder, patriot, and pan-Nigerian, who played a major role in the post-war reconciliation process in the country. He stated, “the legend was a fearless soldier of democracy, who, among other efforts, mobilised 34 eminent Nigerians from across the country on the platform of G34 to demand an end to military rule and put pressure on the military to enthrone democracy”.
Contributing, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP Abia South), said that the fondest memory of the late Ekwueme was that he remained the only former vice president that left office and still became poor.
Also, Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah (APC, Kebbi South), said though the deceased hailed from the South East; he was “a single Nigerian” who contributed immensely to Nigeria’s democracy and future of the country.
The President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, in his remarks, said that the late Ekwueme would be missed by all, describing him as a detribalised Nigerian who loved his country greatly.
Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday opened a condolence register for Ekwueme at the party National Secretariat Ekwueme, founding Chairman of PDP died on Sunday at a London hospital. The register was opened at about 2. 30 P.M by the Chairman of the National Caretaker Committee, Senator Ahmed Makarfi and other members of the committee.
In his condolence message, Makarfi wrote: “The nation and indeed, Africa has lost a rear gem, a nationalist and peace maker. He was a pillar of democracy and good governance. He was a founding member of our party, the PDP.