Former Head of State Yakubu Gowon has commiserated with the family of the first Military Head of State, the late Maj.-Gen. Johnson Aguiyi-Ironsi, over the death of their matriarch, Mrs. Victoria Aguiyi-Ironsi.
Mrs Victoria Aguiyi-Ironsi was the First Lady of Nigeria between Janaury 16, 1966 and July 29, 1966, when her husband was assassinated in a counter military coup. She died on August 23, 2021, at the Federal Medical Centre Umuahia, Abia, aged 97 years.
Gowon, who is the Founder and Chairman of Nigeria Prays, described late Victoria Aguiyi-Ironsi as a true mother of the nation. Gowon, represented by Rev. Dr Chuks Alozie, the Abia Coordinator of Nigeria Prays, said he was at the family house in Umuahia to commiserate with them over the death of their wife, mother and grandmother.
He described the former head of state as a very close associate that shared in his belief in keeping the bound of unity in Nigeria. Gowon said that the contributions of late Mrs Victoria Aguiyi-Ironsi towards nation building, motherly role in mediating for peace, human capacity building, and mobilising Nigeria Army wives for greater role would be missed greatly.
He used the visit to console Umuana Ndume Ibeku people, especially the traditional ruler of the Ibeku clan, Umuahia North council, the government and people of Abia on the lost of a rare mother figure. He prayed for the family for God to console and comfort them and all their relations in this moment of grief and pledged to stand by them in this difficult time.
Responding, Mr Thomas Aguiyi-Ironsi, the head of the family and one time Nigeria’s Ambassador to Republic of Togo, expressed for the comforting words from Gowon. He requested for ceaseless prayers from the Nigeria Prays for the family and informed the delegation that the burial of his late mother was fixed between November 4 and Novomber 5, 2021 in Umuahia.
The delegation led by Alozie, thereafter, offered a special prayer for the family. The group had earlier in Umuahia, paid a condolence visit to Prof. Anthony Agbazuare, the Chief of Staff to Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu, over the loss of his wife, Onyinyechi.