The family of the former Board of Trustees of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Tony Anenih, has formally announced the passing-on of the political icon, late Sunday.
The announcement was contained in a statement signed by his eldest son, Anthony Anenih Junior, titled “Our Patriach, Chief Anthony Akhakon Anenih, Passes On,” released Sunday night.
The statement reads: “With a heavy heart and total submission to the will of the Almighty God, the family of Chief Anthony Akhakon Anenih, CFR, the Iyasele of Esanland, announces his passing on to glory today, Sunday, October 28, 2018 after a brief illness.
“Aged 85, Chief Anthony Akhakon Anenih, is survived by many children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
“A beloved patriarch, he enjoyed God’s uncommon grace while alive.
“He served God and humanity with commitment. He also served his fatherland to the best of his ability.
“We will all sorely miss him. But his legacies live on.”
Mr. Tony Anenih Junior, in the statement disclosed that burial arrangements will be announced by the family later.
Meanwhile, prominent Nigerians have reacted to the death of Chief Tony Anenih.
Amongst those who reacted were the the Governors of Edo and Delta States, Godwin Obaseki and Ifeanyi Okowa, respectfully.
Similarly, the former Governor of Edo State and National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), expressed sadness over the death of Chief Anenih.
Obaseki, who expressed deep sadness over the passing of Chief Anenih, in a statement, said that Anenih’s death is a huge loss to the state and the nation as the elder statesman devoted a better part of his life to the development of the state and the country, contributing to national development in the various capacities he served while he lived.
According to him: “The whole of Edo State has suffered a huge loss with the death of Chief Anenih, the Iyasele of Esan land, who ranks as one of the most illustrious sons of the state.
“Chief Anenih rose to the occasion when it mattered most, to defend the interest of Edo State and her people.
“He attracted development to the state and groomed several Edo sons and daughters who are now active players in the nation’s political space.
“I am deeply saddened by the loss, more so at a time like this, when Nigeria needs his wisdom and guidance as we approach the election season.”
Obaseki prayed that God grants the Anenihs’ the fortitude to bear the loss, noting, “as the whole nation mourns Anenih’s passing, my condolences go to the family, as I pray that God grants them the grace to face this great loss.”
Governor Okowa of Delta State, in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Charles Aniagwu, and titled “Tony Anenih: We’ ve lost a patriotic Nigerian,” commiserated with the family members, the government and the people of Edo State on the death of former Minister of Works.
He also conveyed his condolences to the family of the late Iyasele of Esanland, describing him as a committed patriot who served our nation at the highest levels with an uncommon sense of patriotism and unwavering dedication.
Okowa’s statement read: “I am deeply saddened by the death of elder statesman and former Chairman Board of Trustees of the PDP, Chief Tony Anenih (CFR), who passed on at the age of 85 years.
“He was a committed patriot, an astute politician and a former Minister of Works who worked to better the lots of his people and Nigerians in general, adding “through his purposeful leadership and development strides, the late Anenih influenced the dualisation of the Benin Asaba road, Benin Warri Road and the Benin bypass road which brought about unprecedented development to the Niger Delta region.”
Governor Okowa remarked that as a democrat, the late Anenih etched his name in the annals of Nigeria’s democratic advancement by working courageously for the emergence and consolidation of the Fourth Republic in 1999 when he joined forces with other leaders to form the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
Also reacting to the death of the Chief Anenih, the APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, expressed grief over the incident.
Oshiomhole, in a statement he personally signed, said: “I received with heavy heart the news of the passing of Chief Tony Anenih. He was indeed a political colossus.
“Politics may have separated us, but nothing affected our personal relationship. Whatever public disagreement we might have had, I am consoled that we both reconciled at the church altar after he announced his retirement from partisan politics.
“It is a measure of his generosity of spirit that when I announced my interest in the chairmanship of APC earlier this year, he wrote a letter of endorsement expressing absolute confidence in my ability to inspire APC to greater heights.
“His explicit support was not just in an objective appreciation of my ability but also in solidarity as fellow Edo man.
“We may have disagreed in terms of methodology, but there is no denying that deep in his heart was a commitment to see the progress of the nation at large and his native Edo in particular.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and political associates at this sorrowing moment.”