Eminent Nigerians have converged on Akwa Ibom to pay their last respect to the father of Gov. Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom state, Gabriel Emmanuel Nkanang as preparations for his burial gears up.
The teams which cut across party and ethnic lines also visited to condole with the family of Gov. Emmanuel as well as the larger Nkanang family.
Governors of the PDP and those of the APC as well as those of the senators from both parties shelved their differences to identify with the family over the demise of their beloved father and Patriarch.
The family also received the forum of former governors and deputies; enlarged state exco of the state; the state civil service; members of the National Assembly from the state; members of the state House of Assembly as well as ALGON.
Also among groups that have paid condolence visit to Governor Emmanuel, are religious groups, traditional institutions, the leadership of Hausa/Fulani community in the state and students’ group among others.
Receiving the groups, Gov. Emmanuel said his family was humbled by the superlative expression of love shown his family.
He said his family was happy to receive sympathizers across party lines at this period of grief.
“This is one death that knows nothing about political parties, politics is meant to strengthen us as a people and not to divide us. This thing is like a relay race once you finish you hand over the baton”, Mr. Emmanuel said.
While paying tribute to his late father, Governor Emmanuel, said the Late Elder Nkanang was as a man God whom God honoured in return of his service to Him.
He recalled fond memories of his father as a lover of his family, disciplinarian, reputable teacher and missionary who aided the propagation of the gospel in Kogi, Nassarawa and Niger states.
He attributed the accomplishments of the progenies of the Nkanang family to his father’s moral values, character and discipline.
“I feel proud to have been a son of this kind of man; through his discipline, forthrightness and the grace of God, we are where we are today,” he said.
The Deputy Governor of the state, Mr. Moses Ekpo, who condoled with Gov. Emmanuel and the bereaved family on behalf the State Executive Council, described Late Elder Nkanang as a colossus who, though dead, will live on through his indelible legacies.
“The legacies of your father will live on even after his death. In the upbringing of his children, he left such a legacy that the state will continue to enjoy, through his offspring.
Obong Victor Attah, a former governor of the state who led the Ibibio Elders forum on a visit to the family in his message of condolence assured the governor that the prayers of the Ibibio Elders remained with him and his family.
He thanked God that the deceased elder bequeathed to his children Christian ideals as lived by Governor Emmanuel.