The remains of Malam Isa Umar Gusau were Sunday interred at the Gudu Cemetery in Abuja.
Gusau, aged 47, who had served as special adviser on public relations and strategy to a former governor of Borno State, now Vice President Kashim Shettima and the incumbent governor, Babagana Umara Zulum, died on Thursday evening at a hospital in India after a protracted illness.
A family source who did not want his name mentioned said he had looked fine before getting a message from one of his doctors to come to Egypt.
“The situation became critical, so he had to be transferred to India where he died due to complications.”
The deceased, who was a former staff of Daily Trust Newspaper where he rose to the position of Bureau Chief, is survived by two wives, three children, and many brothers and sisters.
The governor, who was accompanied by Vice President Shettima, personally conveyed the remains of Gusau from Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport to the National Mosque in Abuja where the funeral prayer was observed.
Senators representing Borno Central, Bar Kaka Shehu Lawan, Borno North, Barr. Mohammed Tahir Monguno, Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Abubakar Kyari, members of the House of Representatives from Borno, Secretary to the State Government, Hon. Bukar Tijjani, the Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), Mele Kolo Kyari, and former Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Ibrahim Isa Pantami, were among those who attended his burial.
Meanwhile, in a message after the funeral prayers, Zulum said the death of Malam Gusau, which he described as a sad moment, has thrown the entire Borno State into grief.
Governor Zulum also expressed gratitude to all those that have attended his funeral, sent messages of condolence and prayed for the soul of the deceased.
“Inna lillahi wa Inna ilaihi raji’un, it’s a very sad moment, indeed every soul shall taste death. May Almighty Allah admit him into Jannatul Firdaus. The demise of Alhaji Isa Gusau has created a very big vacuum in the annals of Borno State, the entire people of Borno State are in grief and we pray for Almighty Allah to forgive him,” Zulum.
An elder brother of the deceased, Muazu Umar, described him as a very faithful, trustworthy and hardworking young man who throughout his life had been very industrious.
“He has always tried to be autonomous and independent and has been very supportive of the family. He is someone who we all rely on; somebody whose words are like a stone. For me, it is a massive loss as a brother, particularly, due to our closeness.”
He said his departure was a painful one, adding that “But as a people of faith, it is a manifest truth we all have to accept for what it is. This is because life is a road where everyone comes and goes and surely we will all have to take the same path.”
In the meantime, the Northern States Governors’ Forum (NSGF) has extended condolences to Governor Zulum of Borno State over the demise of his special adviser on media and strategy who was buried yesterday in Abuja.
In a statement by his spokesman, Ismaila Uba Misilli, Chairman of the forum and governor of Gombe State, Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya, expressed sorrow over the sad event, acknowledged Gusau’s professionalism, dedication and remarkable service to Governor Zulum and the government of Borno State.
He also praised the commitment of the late media strategist in managing information, especially during the challenging times faced by Borno State and the entire Northeast sub-region.
Governor Yahaya described the loss as particularly poignant, especially during a time when the late media adviser’s expertise and support were most needed.
He said, “The late media adviser worked diligently for Governor Zulum and government of Borno State, and left an indelible mark in the field of journalism, media strategy and information management. He will surely be remembered for his hard work, commitment to duty and professionalism.”
The governor urged strength for family members, Governor Zulum, the government and the people of Borno State over the profound loss and prayed to Almighty Allah to forgive the shortcomings of the deceased and reward his good deeds with Aljannat Firdaus.