By Daniel Idonor

ABUJA – AFTER five months of a deadly encounter with precaditis which took him away from public life, President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua last night gave up the ghost.

The late President died after a protracted illness which created a political tension in the country for the period the terminal illness lasted.

Vanguard gathered that Yar’Adua who became the first democratically elected president to die while in office, passed on earlier in the night between 9.30 and 10pm.

Yar’Adua was born on August 16, 1951,  and was aged 59

However, as at filing this report, at abou  12:00 am, there was no official confirmation from both the family and the presidency.

Yar’Adua who has been battling acute pericaditis, an inflammation of the membrane around the heart, since November 23 last year for which he received treatment at the King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

He was brought back to the country under the cover of darkness in February and since then had been held incommunicado.

Although there was no official statement, sources close to the family said the late President may be flown into Katsina State, his native home where he will be buried today, according Islamic rights.

The former president  served as governor  of Katsina State  from 29 May 1999 to 28 May 2007, before he was drafted into the presidential race  by then President Olusegun Obasanjo.He was declared the winner of the controversial election held on 21 April 2007, and was sworn in on 29 May 2007.
Yar’Adua: Dateline

On August 16,1951 Musa Yar’Adua was born.

On May 29, 2007,  Yar’Adua became Nigeria’s President.

On November 23,2009, Yar’Adua left for Saudi Arabia for tretament of Acute Pericaditis.

On January 22, 2010, the Supreme Court of Nigeria ruled that the Executive Council of the Federation had 14 days to decide on a resolution about whether he “is incapable of discharging the functions of his office.

On February 9, 2010, the Senate determined that presidential power should be transmitted to the Vice President Goodluck Jonathan.

On February 24, 2010, Yar’Adua returned to Abuja, under the cover of the night, with speculation that he was still on a life support machine.

On May 05, 2010, Yar’Adua  died at the presidential Villa, Aso Rock Abuja.

On May 6,2010, Yar”Adua to be buried in his  hometown Katsina.

Jonathan expresses shock, sadness

Meanwhile, the Acting President, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, received news of the passage of President Yar’adua with great shock and sadness.

According to statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the Acting President, Mr Ima Niboro, Jonathan said , “Nigeria has lost the jewel on its crown, and even the heavens mourn with our nation tonight”

Dr. Jonathan described the death of the president as sad, unfortunate and regrettable. “As individuals and as a nation we prayed for the recovery of Mr. President. But we take solace in the fact that the Almighty is the giver and taker of all life”.

Dr. Jonathan offered heartfelt condolences to President Yar’adua’s widow, Hajiya Turai Yar’adua, the entire Yar’adua family, the people of Katsina State, and Nigerians both at home and the world over.

As a mark of respect for our departed leader, the Acting President has cancelled all official engagements. He has also declared a national mourning for seven days. During this period, the Nigerian flag will fly at half mast.

The remains of the President would be laid to rest in Katsina on Thursday, 6th May, 2010,

More later


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