VP’s Remarks At The Funeral Service Of Elder Gabriel Nkanang In Akwa Ibom
REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY PROF. YEMI OSINBAJO, SAN, GCON, AT THE FUNERAL SERVICE OF LATE ELDER GABRIEL NKANANG IN AKWA IBOM STATE ON THE 15TH OF FEBRUARY, 2020.
It is a very special honour for me to celebrate the inspirational life and times of our dear father, Elder Gabriel Nkanang. And I am here in three different capacities to do so. First, as a representative of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari. Second, in my own personal capacity as a friend and brother of Governor Udom Emmanuel. And third, as a Lagosian; as the representative of the people of Lagos, where Papa Nkanang lived for very many years and passed on to glory.
Papa was in his lifetime, a legendary teacher and headmaster, who taught and mentored thousands of students, many of whom are here today to celebrate his life and times. But his greatest legacy will be his faithful, and prolific spreading of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Through the Qua Iboe church where he planted several churches, not just in this State and the environs, but also as far as the North Central zone of Nigeria. Through the great work that he did, it was clear to all that not only was he a teacher, and a mentor of men, but he was also a spiritual leader, and father to so many.
At funeral services like this, one of the favourite prayers is may the soul of the departed rest in peace. For many who are familiar with Christian theology, you will agree with me that the prayer is medicine after death. The truth of the matter is that men and women rest in peace depending on what they did before they died. And we know that Elder Nkanang not only served, and loved the Lord Jesus Christ while he was here, and accepted him as Lord and Saviour, but also propagated the gospel. So, we confidently say that today, he is indeed resting in peace. We must also remember the children today, and I say to the children of Pa Nkanang, led by my brother, the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, that you are very fortunate indeed. The scripture says in Deuteronomy 7:9. “Therefore know that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments.
Because your father loved God and kept his commandments, there’s a promise of a blessing for a thousand generations. Not just your generation, but a thousand generations after you. And so, we congratulate you on this great blessing that your father has left behind.
The scripture says that a good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children. That inheritance as you know is not money, it’s not property, and it’s not wealth of any kind, it is what your father has left for you, the blessings of a thousand generations because he served the Lord Jesus Christ.
And so, on behalf of all of the 3 different capacities that I come here today, I wish to express not just my condolence, but also congratulations, especially on behalf of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Government and the people of Nigeria to the family of Elder Nkanang, our dear father who has gone to be with the Lord and to the people of Awa-Iman, Onna Local Government and the great people of Akwa Ibom State, on the passing of a great teacher, and a general of the gospel of Jesus Christ Elder Gabriel Nkanang.
God bless you all.