Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has said that he always admired the Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka’s patriotism and courage to speak freely and honestly on public issues.
In a statement by his media office in Abuja today, on the occasion of Soyinka’s 80th birthday, the former Vice President described Professor Soyinka as a credible social critic that created a big space for himself in the hearts of Nigerians.
“Soyinka is an inimitable and indomitable social critic who never hesitates to criticize Nigeria’s leaders whenever he believes they were going wrong.”
Atiku who is also the Turaki Adamawa, said that the Nobel Laureate looks at national issues beyond ethnic and regional sentiments and that “his views are coloured by the larger national interests.”
The former Vice President recalled that while Soyinka was criticizing governments in power whereas many Nigerians would always praise him from safe distance.
Atiku Abubakar commended the Nobel Laureate for being on the side of the ordinary Nigerians all the times, adding that his courage to criticize military regimes, which resulted in his being jailed, was a shining example of his remarkable courage.
The former Vice president wished the Nobel Laureate many more years of patriotic service to Nigeria and humanity. [myad]