NAIROBI, Kenya Feb 15 – Garissa Senator the late Yusuf Haji was buried Monday at the Lang’ata Muslim Cemetery, on the same day he died, in line with muslim tradition.
The burial was attended by President Uhuru Kenyatta, his deputy William Ruto, former Prime Minister Raila Odinga among others.
Haji died on Monday morning at the Aga Khan hospital in Nairobi where he was receiving treatment since Saturday when he was flown back home from Turkey where he had been taken for treatment.
Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka, his National Assembly counterpart Justin Muturi and several politicians and government officials were at the burial to condole the family of Haji who was also the chairman of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Taskforce.
“It is very unfortunate that we have lost such a dependable, solid and highly accomplished Kenyan leader,” the president said in a message of condolence to the family.
“Mzee Haji was a highly respected leader and elder whose wisdom, deep knowledge of the Kenyan society and long experience as a public administrator enabled him to serve the country in various leadership roles with distinction for many years,” the President said.
Outlining Haji’s role in the BBI process, President Kenyatta said his death is a big blow to the country especially in the BBI constitutional reform process where his leadership shall be dearly missed.
“Mzee Haji was a steward of the BBI process and a strong pillar of our desire to construct a cohesive, peaceful and more progressive Kenyan nation. His stewardship of the initiative shall be missed,” the President eulogised.
Deputy President Ruto said Haji was a “selfless, progressive, dependable and a committed champion for a more united and inclusive Kenya.”
Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga mourned Haji as a “dedicated patriot and a humble servant”
Lusaka said the country had lost a sober leader whose contribution especially in the Senate where he was an active member and Chairperson of the security committee would be missed.
“He will be remembered for bringing sobriety in the House. He is one of the few sober Senators that we had in the House and he was an elder,” he said.
Muturi on his part, mourned Haji as a distinguished political leader who served with great dedication and commitment as a career civil servant, rising through the ranks from the provincial administration to the Cabinet, and later to serve as Senator of Garissa County.
“He will be remembered for vouching for investment and development in Kenya’s northern frontier to facilitate education and technical training, which he believed was crucial in redefining the future of the region,” he said.