A close associate of President Muhammadu Buhari, Mallam Ismaila Isa Funtua, is dead.

He died of cardiac arrest on Monday evening, according to one of his brothers. “Mallam told his family members that he wanted to see his doctor but decided to visit his barber first. He drove himself to the hospital,” said.his brother, who doesn’t want his name in print.

It was gathered that the remains of Mallam Funtua is being prepared at Area 1 mosque before his funeral on Tuesday morning.

Ismaila Isa is a renowned Business Executive and public officer with over thirty years of management experience. He was Personnel Manager in United Textiles Limited (UNTL), responsible for over ten thousand staff and a one-time Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

He is the founder of Bulet International Nigeria Limited (the largest wholly owned indigenous construction company) which built most of the iconic public buildings in Abuja.

He is the founding Managing Director of Democrat Newspaper and served as President of the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN) for 8 years.

Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari received with deep sadness on Monday evening, information on passing of his longtime friend and associate, Malam Isma’ila Isa Funtua, who was Life Patron of International Press Institute and Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN).

The President, in a late night statement on Monday by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, condoles with Funtua's family members, the government and people of Katsina State, and all associates of the former President of NPAN, especially the media industry, on the loss. He described the late Funtua as “greatly admired and respected’’.

Part of the statement reads: "President Buhari believes the demise of the publisher and businessman has created a huge gap as Malam Funtua consistently stood by him in his political journey"

The President prayed to Allah for repose of Malam Funtua's soul, and to grant the family strength and fortitude to bear the loss. NNL.

With Reports from Daily Trust

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