Former Cross River State governors, Donald Duke, Liyel Imoke and current state governor, Ben Ayade, were among several other well meaning persons who condoled the family of retired top Nigerian Air Force officer, Emmanuel Ekpenyong Edem, an Air Vice Marshal, who was laid to rest in Calabar, Cross River State, today.
Duke, while condoling the family said “there are few as noble as … Emmanuel Edem” and philosophically expressed further that, “we are definitely richer for having known him and poorer by his departure.” Imoke on his part said he was “…stricken to learn of his demise” and was “fully aware that his demise has left a great void.” Imoke also prayed for the soul of the departed and the entire family in this trying period. “AVM Emmanuel Edem was a fine soldier and distinguished son of Cross River, who proudly raised the flag of our state through unblemished service throughout his eventful military career”, state governor, Ben Ayade wrote. Ayade, like others, also prayed for the family and particularly that may the deceased rest peacefully with God.
Edem who was born on March 13, 1944 in Calabar, and attended schools in Calabar before he was admitted into the Nigerian Defence Academy as an Air Force potential pilot in 1968. He rose through the ranks and was in 1995 appointed the Air Officer Commanding Tactical Air Command, an appointment that automatically made him a member of the Provisional Ruling Council, PRC, the highest decision making body in Nigeria at that time. He voluntarily retired from service in 1999. He passed away on Valentine’s day, this year, leaving behind a wife, three children, Eka, Orok and Eno, four grand children and several other relations and friends, too numerous to mention.
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