Immediate past Senator representing Rivers South-East Senatorial District, Magnus Ngei Abe has condoled with the families of late Elder Austin Nwakoh and comrade James Kobah over their sudden demise.
He described the duo as true Christians, political leaders who built perfect integrity for themselves as committed political leaders.
Abe, who spoke during condolence visits to their families at the weekend in Port Harcourt, expressed shock over the death of both men and stressed that the deceased contributed meaningfully to his political life.
Narrating his relationship with late Elder Austin Nwakoh, the Senator said, "Everybody that knows me, knows that my success story cannot be completely written without Austin Nwakoh, neither can his own story be written without me, as far as our involvement in politics, and the issues of Ogoni are concerned.
"We have had a very long and meaningful partnership, brotherhood and friendship over the years. Frankly, in my widest imaginations I could never have thought that Austin was in any danger of death yet I woke up this morning (Friday), only to see text messages that Austin Nwakoh has passed.
My first instinct was to call and warn the person that he should not say this kind of thing if he does not have facts. But as the day progressed, it became clear and true that indeed Elder Austin Nwakoh has passed on.
The shock can only be imagined. There are many things people will say about Austin at this time but I want to put it on record that if there was a man with a good heart, if there was a man who never carried anything beyond the present, that man was Austin.
It doesn't matter the issue you had with Austin, if you sit with him and if he says, it's over with an issue, then it was over.
As far as I know, Austin had no natural enemies; there is nobody with whom he has had a beef that could not be resolved because his upbringing as a Christian was not Christianity of words but Christianity of a lifestyle.
The loss of this man at this time is a great one not just to Ogoni or Rivers State, but indeed to Nigeria because those who knew Austin know that his tentacles cut across this country.
He is a man that was respected by those who knew him and loved by those who have dealt with him because of his honesty, integrity and his simplicity.
In so many ways we should give thanks to God because Austin didn't just have children, he brought up his children properly. He had a home for everybody who cared to stop-by".
It would be recalled that late Austin Nwakoh, who was Special Adviser on Special Duties to the former Rivers State Governor, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi, died Thursday night after he had a brief illness.
Earlier, while receiving the Senator alongside some chieftains of APC, Chief Precious Ngbor, who spoke on behalf of the Nwakoh's family noted that the death of Austin was still a shock to his family and friends.
Ngbor further explained that "Austin was not a secret person. The illness was not life-threatening. He was discharged from the hospital fit but then death came and took everyone unaware.
"He struggled for life but died before he got back to the hospital. Austin was one of the people I expected to bury me because he was my junior by age".
In the same vein, while condoling the family of late APC chieftain and Union Leader, Comrade James Kobah in his house at Igbo-Etche community in the State, Abe said, "Comrade James Kobah was not just a friend but a brother.
Comrade Kobah was a very patriotic Nigerian, very straight forward, and a committed member of our party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) where he served for many years as our Senatorial Vice Chairman.
We are here to let you know that his sacrifices and contributions to the lives of others will not be in vain and that God in His infinite mercy will also rally other people you will need in terms of help".
In company of Senator Abe on the condolence visits were; his wife, Bariyaah Abe, former members of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon. Christian Mbah, Hon. Legborsi Nwidaadah, Hon. Ben Horsefall. Others include Professor Emeka Achor, Comrade Kadilo Kabari and Prince Akekue.