40th Anniversary: Buhari, Danjuma, Others Mourn Murtala Mohammed
PROMINENT personalities, including President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday, reflected on the times and legacies of the late former Nigerian Military Head of State, Gen. Murtala Ramat Mohammed, 40 years after he was assassinated in a failed coup plot.
Remembered as an anti-corruption crusader, Murtala was felled by the bullets of the coupists led by the late Col. Bukar Sukar Dimka at the Federal Secretariat, Ikoyi, Lagos, on Friday, February 13, 1976, on his way to the office.
President Buhari, at an event organised by the Murtala Mohammed Foundation (MMF) to commemorate the anniversary, noted that the death of the former head of state robbed the country of its great foundation because, according to him, “Murtala was on his way to putting Nigeria back to the path of order and discipline after years of drift, corruption and near despair. It would not be over stating the fact to say that, Nigeria lost its newly found momentum with Murtala’s demise.”
The President lamented that 40 years on, the shadow of his death still somewhat hangs over Nigeria, noting, “We are here to honour a national hero and a patriot, not to mourn him, but to take a new lesson from his achievements, his love for Nigeria and Nigerians from wherever they came, his intense professionalism, his impatience for incompetence and lack of patriotism, his loyalty to friends and colleagues, and celebrate a life that was marked by extra-ordinary session, energy and determination to make Nigeria better. These are values that the young and old alike should remember and celebrate.”