By Nahum Sule and Janet Nyajon Audu (In Wukari, Taraba State)
The remains of former military Administrator of Delta and Cross River States, retired Air Commodore Ibrahim Kefas, has been laid to rest in his Wukari GRA home on Saturday afternoon.
Kefas who died after a protected illness on Nigeria's 61th Independent anniversary day, on Friday, October 1, 2021, at a hospital in Abuja, was buried amidst tears by family members, friends, and his Military colleagues who came from across the nation.
The late Air Commodore Kefas, according to a family source, suffered complications from cancer-related issues.
During the funeral service which took place at his GRA House, the Taraba State Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Chairman, Rev. Isaiah Magaji, preached at the service and called on people to live a righteous life as death awaits every mortal. Taking his Scriptural readings from the book of Revelations 1 vs 12-18, he said that death is an exit point that every human will pass through.
He added that only God decides anyone's coming to this earth and his or her exit. "only God has the power to give and to take life at the time that pleases him without consulting with anyone. That is to say that God is in charge of everyone's life".
He admonished the congregation to be mindful of death each day they have the opportunity to see another day as death will come without notice.
The CAN Chairman however described the late Air Commodore Ibrahim Kefas as a hero who has impacted positively on the lives of his people and has contributed his quota in the propagation of God's work. "Kefas came, he saw, fought, conquered and left the legacy that should be emulated", he stated.
According to him, "life without influence is a wasted life as life is all about the influence”
In his tribute on behalf of the Atenwu Kefas family, Mr. Ada Kefas, said the late Air Commodore has taught them to be patient, sacrificial, and be sensitive to the plight of the poor, the needy, and the downtrodden.
Speaking at the funeral event, Air Commodore A.K Bello, remarked that the demise of Air Commodore Ibrahim Kefas came to them as a shock. He described him as an astute Engineering Officer of the Airforce who has served the Nigeria Airforce passionately in various capacities both at home and abroad.
In his goodwill message, the Senator representing the Southern Senatorial zone in the National Assembly, Sen. Emmanuel Bwacha, recalled his fruitful meetings with the late Kefas on developmental issues in the zone. He said Kefas was a patriot who has written his name on gold.
Also Speaking, the executive governor of Taraba state Arc Darius Ishaku, represented by the Taraba state Speaker, Rt. Hon. (Prof) Joseph Albasu Kunini, condoled the family of the deceased and the entire Tarabans, saying that an Iroko tree has fallen in the state.
"Air Commodore Kefas died when we need his wise counsel the most. He has stabilized our party, having served as the state PDP Chairman". He described the late Kefas as a man of peace and a bridge-builder, maintaining that the Air Force Officer has indeed accomplished and fulfilled the mandate given to him by his master (God) hence his death should not discourage Taraba people and Nigerians alike. He will be greatly missed, he said.
NIGERIAN NEWSLEADER Correspondents report that dignitaries from all walks of life attended the burial. According to his biography, Late Air Commodore Ibrahim Kefas was born on January 27, 1948, in Wukari Local Government Area of Taraba State to the family of Manu Kefas Atenwunu.
He was enlisted into the Nigeria Airforce on December 13, 1969. Late Ibrahim Kefas served as military administrator of Cross River and Delta states respectively. He died at the age of 77, and left behind a wife and 13 children to mourn him. NNL.