Mallam Isma’ila Isa Funtua, a businessman and founding Managing Director of the defunct Democrat Newspaper and the life patron of the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN), has died from cardiac arrest at the age of 76.
The very close associate of President Muhammadu Buhari, was at some point rumored to be in line to replace the late Chief of Staff to the President, Mallam Abba Kyari.
The President in a statement, said “he received with deep sadness on Monday evening information on passing of his longtime friend and associate, Malam Isma’ila Isa Funtua, who was Life Patron of International Press Institute and Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN).
“The President condoles with family members, government and people of Katsina State, and all associates of the former President of NPAN, especially the media industry, on the loss, describing him as “greatly admired and respected’’.
“President Buhari believes the demise of the publisher and businessman has created a huge gap as Malam Funtua consistently stood by him in his political journey.
“The President prayed to Allah for repose of Malam Funtua’s soul, and to grant the family strength and fortitude to bear the loss.”