By Emmanuel Mogbede
Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, immediate-past National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, (APC) on Wednesday in Abuja, said he learnt the rudiments of politics from the late Chief Tony Anenih.
He stated this when he paid a condolence visit to the family of the late Anenih, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), adding that he was greatly saddened to hear of his death.
“He was my original educator; he brought me up in politics and thought me the rudiments of politics, not in the classroom or anything, but by just observing him perform.
“He had been through everything and he was everything in this country, the history of this country cannot be written in any meaningful sense without his major contributions being heralded, ” Odigie-Oyegun said.
He added that he learnt peace, reconciliation and compromise from the deceased, saying he has never seen him being angry, vulgar or insulting.
The immediate past APC national chairman, said that Anenih was always respectful and was a man of strong conviction.
He maintained that though his family had a right to be sad over his death, they should look at the bright side, adding that all his children enjoyed his guidance in their maturity.
Odigie-Oyegun further added that though Anenih was late, his children should be happy because they had a father who would be celebrated by the entire nation.
“Join in the celebrations, because your father was a great man and a political colossus of our time.
“The sun has gone down on a political legend and he will be surely missed, may God rest his gentle soul,” Odigie-Oyegun said.
He added that the deceased was a man, who loved his people and the nation and served passionately with all the courage and wisdom he was endowed with.
He, however, said that the Odigie-Oyegun family and the Anenih`s had become close through politics not withstanding political affiliation, marriage and friendship between children.
“So we share your loss in every personal way, may the Almighty God console you and give you strength now and always, “ he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Odigie-Oyegun was received at the residence of the deceased by his eldest son, Tony Anenih Junior and his widow, Justice Maryiam Anenih.
Anenih, a former Minister of Works who hails from Edo, died at the age of 85, on Sunday at Cedarcrest Hospital in Abuja, where he was receiving treatment for an undisclosed ailment.
Anenih resigned from active politics in 2016, saying; “I am persuaded that I have no more ambition nor any point to prove in politics.
“I shall, however, continue to avail the country of my experience, give suggestions and offer advice, as a statesman”.
Anenih was a state chairman of then ruling party, National Party of Nigeria (NPN), between 1981 and 1983.
He was also the national chairman of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) in 1993, under whose platform Alhaji Moshood Abiola, contested the June 12, 1993 presidential election.