The Yoruba Council of Elders and the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes have paid tributes to Chief Harry Akande, who died at the age of 77 on Saturday.
The YCE in a condolence message on Sunday by its Secretary-General, Dr Kunle Olajide, said Akande never gave up on contesting the 2023 presidential election till his death.
The YCE scribe said the international businessman cum politician was a very patriotic Nigerian, who he said believed strongly that Nigeria had everything required to be a great nation.
The YCE scribe said, “His love for his country was the motivating factor for his entry into partisan politics which made him contest the presidential election unsuccessfully in 2007.
“He did not give up on the possibility of throwing his hat into the ring for the 2023 presidential election. He was convinced in his lifetime that Nigeria has all it takes to truly be the giant of Africa thereby taking his rightful position as a leading country in the world.
“During my last telephone discussion with him, two weeks ago, he tried hard to get me back into partisan politics because he believed strongly there is still a chance to redeem the country and that we had something to offer.
“Nigeria has lost a patriot, Yoruba nation has lost a gem. He was an outstanding philanthropist kind and generous to whoever came to him for assistance.
“Chief Akande was a very devoted family man. His love for his wife Tolulope and his children was total. God will console and strengthen Tolu, his dear wife, children, friends and members of his extended family. May his soul rest in perfect peace.”
The President General of Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes, Chief Yemi Soladoye, has also paid tribute to Akande describing him as a great and Illustrious son of Ibadan.
Soladoye said every son and daughter of Ibadanland was mourning the passage of Akande, who he said would be remembered for his contributions to the development of Ibadan.
Soladoye said, “Chief Harry Akande was an international business mogul, a flamboyant billionaire, a dogged business strategist, and above all a great lover of Ibadanland.
“He was responsible for attracting a sizeable number of foreign direct investment to Ibadanland and Nigeria and also rose in politics to the level of contesting for the position of the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“He built many relationships across local and international bridges. He would be remembered as one Ibadan man that had class, taste, and style and enjoyed his wealth to the fullest. May his soul rest in perfect peace.”