By Gloria Afajagbe
Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, Senator-elect, Adams Oshiomhole and Mike Ozekhome (SAN) have expressed sadness over the death of Raymond Dokpesi.
Dokpesi, the chairman of Daar Communications, proprietor of African Independent Television (AIT) and Raypower FM, died on Monday in Abuja at the age of 71.
Obaseki, in a statement said that Dokpesi recorded indelible achievements that marked him out as one of Nigeria’s most impactful media executives.
“The Ezomo of Weppa-Wanno, Chief Dokpesi was an outstanding businessman and indeed, a media mogul, who took the bold step to venture into private broadcasting and broke the ground for many who came after him.
“He was a formidable Chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), bringing his experience and expertise to bear in handling party affairs”.
The governor commiserated with the family, Weppa-Wanno, the Board and management of Daar Communications among others.
Similarly, Oshiomhole in a statement signed by his media aide Victor Oshioke, described Dokpesi’s demise as a monumental loss to the Afemai land, adding that the vacuum created by his departure will be hard to fill.
“Though we mourn the loss of this exceptional Afemai elder, cultural ambassador and patriotic Nigerian, we are nonetheless consoled that he did not only live a fulfilled life, but touched many lives through his many investments in job creating businesses and philanthropic engagements.
“He was an Etsako man to the core, in love with his people, their traditions, and aspirations. He will be remembered for his resilience and tenacity in the battles he fought during the dark days of military dictatorship, for the emergence of a vibrant, independent, and responsive media in Nigeria”.
On his part, Ozekhome described the late Dokpesi as a trail blazer, who blazed private independent broadcasting of television and radio in Nigeria, thereby breaking decades of government monopoly.
“He spoke with me up to 1.50am this morning. I am a sad man, completely devastated. So, it was a farewell call from him?
The renowned lawyer described his death as a great loss to Weppa Wanno, Etsako, Edo State, Nigeria, the media world, the maritime world, Africa, the black race, and indeed mankind.
The trio prayed that God should grant him internal rest and give the family fortitude to to bear the loss.