President Goodluck Jonathan has described Chief Solomon Lar as “a man of peace, a man of clean heart”, who was dearly loved by his people.
Jonathan said this while paying tribute to Lar at the Rwang Pam Township Stadium, Jos Plateau State, on the occasion of Lar’s Lying in State, which he described as “a solemn moment for us all”, noting that “in all my interactions with Solomon Lar, I realised that he was a man that has his people heart.”
He added that “if all the leaders in this country had his kind of heart, Nigeria would have been a better place.”
He said his interest was not for parochial and selfish purpose; “not like some others do.”
He said his biography reflects the true person we all know, adding that it was not a forged biography as seen in some cases where biography did not reflect the true character and life of the person. He added that as an elder of the PDP Lar dutifully advised the party and the country at large.
While recalling that former President Shehu Shagari and Lar were in different political parties and yet worked together for the development of the nation so much that Shagari paid tribute to Lar even in death, Jonathan admonished present day politicians to learn from their example, describing it as “a lesson for us politicians; we should always consider the country before our personal interest.”
He observed that for Lar to have personally delivered a letter seeking an end to Late General Sani Abacha military dictatorship to him at that time shows that he was ready to lay down his neck for his country. “That commitment, we must imbibe”, the President added.
Plateau State Governor, Jonah Jang, who also spoke at the event thanked the President and the Governors at the occasion for the show of love towards the state, recalled the last engagement he had together with Lar, when the deceased led the Middle belt Forum (MBF) on a visit to the President on some pressing issues.
He described him as a father; a man that symbolized convergence of politics and religion, adding that for that reason the state university was renamed after him.
Extolling the virtues of her deceased husband, widow of the deceased, Professor Mary Lar, said, “Lar was a close confidant of President Jonathan; a Counsellor to Governor Jang; a Baba to Senate President, David Mark”, adding that her late husband meant different things to different people.
She said before he passed on, her husband gave a message of peace and unity to the country, adding that Lar’s last wish was that Nigeria should remain as one indivisible entity. “He also asked me to greet Governor Jang, and to tell Plateau people to live together in peace; and asked me to tell the Tarok nation to remain together as one.”
While thanking the Governors for their various show of care towards her family at their trying moment, Mrs. Lar particularly appreciated the Governor of Nasarawa State, whom she said lined up school children along the road all the way from Karu to Lafia to pay their last respect to the deceased.
mess and clinic.