The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has described the death of Mallam Isma’ila Isa Funtua as a rude shock and a severe blow to the media industry in the country. In a statement issued in Abuja on Tuesday, the Minister hailed Mallam Isa Funtua’s contribution to media development and his untiring defence of free speech and the freedom of the press, starting from his days as the founder of the Democrat Newspapers to his stint as the President of the Newspaper Proprietors’ Association of Nigeria (NPAN).
He said Mallam Isa Funtua’s passion for the media industry saw him serving as the life patron of the NPAN and taking active interest in matters concerning the industry until his death. ”Mallam Isa Funtua was a man of many parts, with his eventful life highlighted by service, whether as a media icon, an entrepreneur or a philanthropist. He also served as a government Minister and a member of the 1994-1995 Constitutional Conference, hallmarking his versatility,” Alhaji Mohammed said.
He extended his condolences to Mr. President, other family and friends of the late Isa Funtua, the NPAN and indeed the entire media industry. The Minister prayed for the repose of the soul of the departed, and for comfort and strength to the family he left behind.