Nigeria’s Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, has said that the legacy of determined, proud and assertive black emancipation left by late Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe will live long in the hearts of Africans.
Mr Osinbajo’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, in a statement on Saturday in Abuja, said the vice president conveyed the message on the condolence register for Mugabe at Harare International Airport.
Mr Osinbajo was in Zimbabwe to represent President Muhammadu Buhari at the state funeral of the late former president of Zimbabwe.
“Nigeria most respectfully condoles with the Republic of Zimbabwe on the passing of her President, Robert Mugabe – who led the republic and her people to freedom and majority rule – alongside so many other patriots.
“His legacy of determined, proud and assertive black emancipation will live long in the hearts of Africans.
“We wish the people of Zimbabwe great peace and prosperity.”
Mr Osinbajo, later while speaking with Zimbabwean journalists at the Harare International Airport, said that Mr Mugabe was a great encouragement to the independent movements everywhere.
He said Mr Mugabe was also a great motivation to self-realisation for black people practically everywhere.
According to Mr Osinbajo, the passing on of Mugabe is indeed sad, especially for those who are leaders today.
“First let me say that for all of us, the whole of Africa, the memories of the years of decolonisation, the years of the struggle for black majority rule in various places are years that bring joy and confidence to most of us, especially leaders today.
“This is one of the reasons why President Mugabe stood out as one of those leaders whose zeal, passion and selfless commitment to the emancipation of the people of Zimbabwe was not only a great encouragement to the independent movement everywhere, but more to the self-realisation for black people practically everywhere.
“So, his passing is indeed sad. I think that for most of us, especially those who are leaders today, there’s a lot to learn from such an incredibly illustrious career, especially the role that he played in decolonization.
“And, of course, alongside the work that was done, not just by the frontline states, but by the likes of Nelson Mandela in South Africa and so many other African patriots; their lives and times, especially during the period of the struggle for black majority rule in Southern Africa and the support that other African countries gave, especially sub-Saharan African countries; Nigeria being, as you have noted, a frontline state.
“There are times when I think we should be extremely proud of what we achieved as black people,” he said.