In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, the President said he joined all former leaders of Nigeria, professional colleagues and friends of the Ekwueme family in celebrating the octogenarian.
Buhari noted that Ekwueme’s life’s journey had been a narrative of immeasurable grace, courage, and candour.
The statement read, “The President extols Ekwueme’s love for knowledge and search for wisdom from an early age, which led him to obtain many degrees in various fields of study, including a doctorate in Architecture, and being one of the first Nigerians to gain the Fulbright Scholarship to study in the United States.
“President Buhari commends the former Vice President’s entrepreneurial spirit in setting up the first indigenous architectural firm in Nigeria, spreading its tentacles to more than 16 cities, until he accepted the national call to serve his fatherland in 1979 after a long commitment in building his community.
“As one of the founders of Nigeria’s democracy, the President affirms that Ekwueme played a major role in mobilising the group of 34 eminent Nigerians in the 1990s, who moved against all odds in opposing military dictatorship in the country and enabled the foundation of a liberal and inclusive leadership structure.
“President Buhari recalls, with fond memory, his many encounters with the former Vice President over the years, and his lovingkindness, peaceful nature and deep commitment in seeing Nigeria become one of the greatest countries on earth.
“He prays that the Almighty God will grant Ekwueme good health, longer life, and more opportunities to share with humanity from his fountain of wisdom.”