Congratulating the former military president on his 76th birthday, Bello said Babangida was directly responsible for the political re-engineering of the country.
In a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Malam Jibrin Ndace, the governor described Babangida as apostle of progressive ideology, presidentialism and federalism, adding that the ex- Nigerian leader is a father with an accommodating and philanthropic heart.
Bello said: “Years after he left office, his socio-political wizardry and intelligence as well as the numerous, visibly useful people-oriented developmental projects remain monumental.
“It is on record that as a military officer, Gen. Babangida exhibited high sense of professionalism that singled him out as a unique officer whose quality decisions and advice at critical moments of our national life had made his Minna country home a ‘Political Mecca’ for the country’s political class. The enigma has built bridges across the six geo-political zones of the country and these had made him the nation’s most sort for living leader.
“We are proudly celebrating a strategic and unrepentantly nationalistic leader and human manager with an uncommon passion in the service of fatherland and humanity in general. Indeed, he holds his country very dear in his heart.
“On behalf of myself, the government and people of Niger State, I wish to felicitate with our father and leader; mentor and role model as you celebrate your 76th birthday today. You are indeed a precious gift to mankind and this great country.
“It is my fervent prayer that Allah will continue to preserve you for many more years, so that the younger generation and indeed the country can continue to draw from your wealth of experience and guidance even at this critical moment in the political history of this country.”