Ex-Senate President Wayas not buried 14 months after death

Late Senate President of the Second Republic, Dr Joseph Wayas


The remains of the late Senate President in the Second Republic between 1979 and 1983, Senator Joseph Wayas, have yet to be buried 14 months after death.

Wayas died in December 2021.

Following the demise, the Cross River State Governor, Prof Ben Ayade, inaugurated a funeral committee immediately to plan for his burial.

The committee was chaired by a two-time Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Kanu Agabi.


However, after over a year, the late Wayas has yet to be laid to rest as family sources said there was no finance to attend to the body and that they could barely cope, DailyTrust reports.

A former executive secretary of the National Planning Commission, Ntufam Ugbo, revealed he was no longer part of the committee.

While affirming Ayade had made funds available for the funeral, he disclosed the first son of the late Senate President, Joseph Wayas Jr, had a better explanation for the delay.

He said, “He cannot say he does not have an explanation to give on why the funeral is delayed. He is the first son, so he should be in charge.

Earlier, Ayade, in a condolence message lamented the passing of the former Senate President, describing his death as a monumental loss to the state in particular and Nigeria as a whole.

In a press statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Christian Ita, Ayade said Dr Wayas left indelible footprints on the sands of time.

“As a state, Cross River is in pain as we mourn the passing of our illustrious son. He was a rare gem. Dr Wayas’ demise is indeed a monumental loss to our dear state and Nigeria,” Ayade said in the statement.

Also, the Chief Media Adviser to Cross River governor, Christian Ita, disclosed that the governor had released funds for  the burial.

“I don’t want to get involved in the matter. Perhaps, the first son is the problem, but speak to members of the funeral committee. The governor actually released money for the burial months ago,” Ita told  DailyTrust.

However, in response, Wayas Jr blamed the funeral committee for the delay of his late dad’s burial.

He said he had little role to play since the committee was set to plan for the funeral.

“The funeral is not exactly in our hands but that of the funeral committee. I hear there are issues surrounding the funeral funds. And some members are said to have resigned. I cannot go back to the state governor or Federal Government now due to election issues. The governor has done well already,” he said.

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