Abuja - Rep. Abiodun Balogun (APC-Ijebu North/Ijebu East/Ogun Waterside), has described the late Nelson Mandela, former President of South Africa, as the "greatest black man" that ever lived.
Balogun made the remark in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday. He added that Mandela lived a life worthy of emulation.
"Mandela is the greatest black man that has ever lived; he lived a life of total dedication and service to humanity",he said.
The House of Representatives member urged Nigerian politicians to learn from the legacy Mandela left behind. "We, Nigerian politicians, have a lot to learn from his virtues",he said.
Osita Okechukwu, the National Publicity Secretary of Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP), described Mandela as "an icon of all ages".
"Mandela will live in our memory for ever as an icon of all ages because of his humility and magnanimity to humanity in the way he simply forgave those who incarcerated him for 27 years. He forgave them and also showed it in several ways by just serving one term as President of South Africa",he said.
Okechukwu added that Mandela did not revenge the injustice meted out on by way of nationalising industries in the country.
"Mandela was not on a revenge mission. He would be remembered for his magnanimity and sacrifice for his people, he did not amass wealth, he was only concerned about his nation",he said.
He described him as an "extraordinary" man who lived a life of sacrifice to his country, and who sacrificed his nuclear family in the interest of his country.
Mandela became South African's first black President on May 10, 1994. He was fondly called ``Madiba`` by his people. Mandela died on Dec. 6 at the age of 95.