Emotions flowed freely, yesterday, as the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) held a commendation ceremony in memory of its staff that lost their lives in the ill-fated Dana plane crash of June 3, 2012.
The NNPC staff who died in the crash included former Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Dr. Levi Ajuonuma, Manager, Pipelines and Depot Projects, Mr. Kayode Okikiolu, Deputy Manager, Brass LNG, Mr, Ibrahim Nagidi, and Mr. Inusa Ahmed Abba who died with his son, Faysal.
Others were a Transformation Officer in the Corporate Planning and Strategy Division; Mr. Lanre Fatoku who lost his entire family his wife Mrs Anjola Fatokun, son Olaoluwa and daughter Ibukun Fatokun as well as the Assistant Director and Abuja Zonal Operations Controller of the DPR, Mr. Anthony Nwaokoagbara.
Immediate family members of the departed were present at the ceremony.
Speaking at the occasion which held at the NNPC Towers, Abuja, Group Managing Director of the Corporation, Engr. Andrew Yakubu, said that their passing has been a very harrowing experience not only to the NNPC but to the entire oil and gas industry.
‘’If it were to be by our powers we would have wished that this gathering was for a different purpose, but we are all humans just like our departed colleagues who had to bow to the higher powers of God almighty,’’ Yakubu said.
He added:‘’We can only imagine the impact on the family if we can be feeling this way. But we take solace in the fact that God the creator of all things knows best why he had to take them away at this time.
I want to assure you that we share in your pain; we will render our support in whatever way we can. I want to seize this opportunity to remind all of you to remember these families in your prayers.’’
In his tribute, former NNPC GMD, Funsho Kupolukun, told the families of the departed to take solace in the fact that their loved ones went down in the course of doing the right thing.
‘’I will feel better if I go down doing the right thing; they went down doing the right. They were great guys, I hope we have the time to remember the family and loved ones left behind by these friends,’’ Kupolukun said.
Similarly, the acting Zonal Operations Controller, DPR, Abuja, Mrs.Chioma Njoku, who was visibly emotional at the ceremony, said: ‘’I have had a bad insomnia since June 3, I hardly sleep and if I feel this way I wonder what the families of the deceased would be feeling.’’