A seasoned veteran journalist and a prominent leader of Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), Alhaji Magaji Dambatta yesterday evening passed away at the age of eighty three years in Garki Hospital, Abuja after a protracted illness.
Dambatta was until his death a prominent Northern Elder in the just concluded National Conference. He however, did not function well due to old age and ill health.
In a statement released by the Assistant Secretary Media and Communication of the National Conference, Mr. James Akpandem in Abuja, said that Dambatta died in Garki Hospital, after an unsuccessful trip to abroad for a better medical care.
According to the statement, “As officials of the 2014 National Conference were winding down activities at the Secretariat, another sad news of the death of a delegate was received.
“Alhaji Magaji Dambatta OFR, CON, who came on the platform of socio-political/cultural and ethnic nationality groups from the North-West zone died a few hours ago at the Garki General Hospital, Abuja where he was taken to after an unsuccessful medical trip abroad.
Until his death, Dambatta was the last surviving person among eight people that founded the Northern Elements Progressive Union (NEPU).
Dambatta was a classmate of late Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero at the Kano Middle School (now Runfa college), and later School of Arabic studies Kano.
After his retirement, he became the chairman of Daily Times newspaper, and was equally the Chairman, Federal Housing Authority. He took over from late Chief Sunday Awoniyi as chairman board of trustees of the ACF and member of the Presidential Advisory Council (2010).
Dambatta was the former chairman of Kano Foundation, is survived by a wife and five children.
According to a family source, his corpse will arrive Kano today for burial according to Islamic rite.
Elder statesman Alhaji Tanko who is 87 the only surviving person among the members of the executive committee of NEPU, described Dambatta as a very peaceful man, a rare gem who Kano state and the nation will miss his contribution to the development of both state and country.
Also, Akpandem noted that the Conference Chairman, Justice Idris Kutigi, feels deeply distressed by this sad development and has expressed on behalf of the Conference Secretariat his deep condolences to the family of the late deceased praying that the Almighty receives his spirit and grants his soul sweet repose.