…Goodluck Jonathan, Atiku Abubakar, IPC, NUJ, Senate President, Others Pay Respect It’s been a floodgate of tributes, condolences and reminiscences of his good deeds and how he impacted lives and changed the landscape of the media industry since his passage on Monday May 29. Dr. Raymond Aleogho Dokpesi, media entrepreneur and trail blazer is being
…Goodluck Jonathan, Atiku Abubakar, IPC, NUJ, Senate President, Others Pay Respect
It’s been a floodgate of tributes, condolences and reminiscences of his good deeds and how he impacted lives and changed the landscape of the media industry since his passage on Monday May 29. Dr. Raymond Aleogho Dokpesi, media entrepreneur and trail blazer is being celebrated even as his family mourns his passage.
Both his home and the premises of Daar Communications, owners of Raypower Radio and Africa Independent Television have been receiving visitors who have come to commiserate with the family and the media organisations he left behind.
Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the PDP and a close associate and confidant of the media mogul, led a delegation to the Dokpesis on Wednesday. According to Alhaji Atiku, “I am in a state of shock! As we say in Islam: from God, we came, and to Him, we return. I am in prayers and will continue in prayers! My everlasting and deepest condolences to the Raymond Dokpesi family. May God forgive his sins and grant him eternal rest. Ezemo, not on a date like this should you leave us!
One of the early callers at the residence of the Dokpesis was former President Goodluck Jonathan, who described him in glowing language and recalled how he stood by him and hosted him when he lost the 2015 presidential elections. Some other prominent Nigerians have been expressing their grief over the death of the media mogul and pacesetter.
Former President Goodluck Jonathan described Dr. Dokpesi:” as a successful businessman and philanthropist who took the art of giving and human relations to a new level. As a patriot and politician, he exemplified the virtues of loyalty, justice and service. A team player and bridge builder, High Chief Dokpesi played the kind of politics that promoted friendship, ethnic cohesion and national unity.
“He will be remembered for his works of charity, devotion to his faith and inspiring leadership, especially serving as a trailblazer who pioneered private broadcasting and played a major role in advancing media freedom in Nigeria”,ex-President Jonathan stressed.
Media Organisations, IPC, NUJ Commiserate
One of the latest organizations to commensurate with the families he left behind -his immediate family and the DAAR Communication family was the International Press Centre (IPC), Lagos-Nigeria.
In a letter personally signed by Mr Lanre Arogundade IPC Executive Director and addressed to Mr. Tony Akiotu, Chief Executive Officer, Group MD and Director DAAR Communication, Mr. Arogundade said Chief (Dr.) Dokpesi would be remembered for his foresight and courageous intervention in the Nigerian communication and media landscape.
“As an entrepreneur who walked where Angels feared to tread, he blazed the trail by establishing the first independent radio broadcast station in Nigeria. The birth of Ray power radio station and later the Africa Independent Television as 24-hour broadcast stations have impacted the media industry very positively.
“While the stations have provided opportunity for generations of journalists to excel as professionals, they have also
given the people wider access to diverse viewpoints and offered them avenue to contribute to issues of national and public interest”, noting that ” Chief (Dr) Dokpesi’s contributions would therefore occupy prime place in the history of
broadcast media evolution and development in Nigeria.
The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) also expressed shock and regrets over the death of Chief Aleogho Raymond Dokpesi, In a statement,Chris Isiguzo, the National President of NUJ, described Dokpesi as a National Icon and Media Entrepreneur whose footprint in the broadcast media will remain indelible.
“A Media Mogul, whom despite the difficult terrain in which the media operate in the country and the undue pressure and harassment from State Actors, had stood firmly in support of a free and independent media and resisted any attempt by politicians and government toward increased control of the media and harassment of Journalists.
“Chief Dokpesi who had devoted the greater part of his life in fighting for media development, especially the private broadcast industry which he pioneered in the country, was a completely detribalised Nigerian whose forthrightness, doggedness remain outstanding.
“A patriotic citizen, he remained consistent and refused to be dragged into issues he never believed in, even when he was subjected to political intimidation and harassment,” Isiguzo said in the statement.
The NUJ called on Journalists in the country to “promote Development Journalism and continue to exhibit the highest professional and ethical standards as the best way to immortalize Chief Dokpesi”.
Nigeria Senate, Mourns Him
Nigerian Senate on Wednesday devoted part of its plenary to mourn Dr. Raymod Dokpesi. This followed a motion moved by Francis Alimikhena (APC, Edo North). In the motion, Senator Alimikhena prayed the senate to encourage the federal government to immortalise the late founder of DAAR Communications for his contributions to the country’s development.
The Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, who presided over the plenary directed members of the lawmakers to observe one-minute silence in memory of Dr. Dokpesi. Contributing to the motion, Senator Rochas Okorocha (APC, Imo West) hailed Dr Dokpesi for his contributions to the development of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Senator Okorocha said Dr. Dokpesi, during his lifetime, was a loyal member of the PDP and to all party leaders, including its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar. The deputy senate president also hailed the deceased for his support for the leadership of the 9th National Assembly.
Senate President Ahmad Lawan in a statement by his media aide, Mr. Ola Awoniyi, described the death of the founder of Africa Independent Television (AIT) and Raypower FM as a great loss to the Nigerian polity and media industry in the light of his immense contributions to politics and the evolution of private media in Nigeria and Africa.
The Senate President said it is to Dokpesi’s credit that he established the first private television network in Nigeria, Africa’s first private satellite television, and first privately owned radio station in Nigeria. “I commiserate with the immediate family of Dr Raymond Dokpesi, staff of AIT/Ray power FM radio and the media industry at large on this great loss. They should all be consoled that Dr Dokpesi made his mark in business, politics and the media industry and lived a fulfilled life,” Lawan said.
Governor Sanwo-Olu Mourns
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos state in a condolence statement issued on Monday by his Media Adviser, Mr. Gboyega Akosile, said the late Dokpesi would be remembered for breaking the monopoly of government-owned broadcasting in Nigeria with the establishment of the first private radio station, Raypower FM.
“On behalf of the Government and people of Lagos State, I mourn the passage of businessman and media guru, who contributed his quota to the economy of Lagos State by providing job opportunities for many young Lagos residents in the media sector.
“High Chief Raymond Dokpesi was a forerunner in private broadcasting in Nigeria. He established the first privately owned television and radio in Nigeria. His bold decision to break the government monopoly in the broadcasting sector gave birth to hundreds of privately owned television and radio stations in Nigeria.
“He was also an active participant in Nigeria politics during the present Fourth Republic and served his party and Nigeria in different capacities. He was a philanthropist who dedicated his life to the service of his community, state, and country. “I pray for the repose of the soul of the late Dr. Dokpesi and pray that God grants the media industry and the deceased family, friends and associates the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss,” Sanwo-Olu said.
Inspector General of Police, Yahaya Bello Others Condole
Also mourning the founder of African Independent Television (AIT) is the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, who described Dokpesi’s death as a monumental loss to Nigeria, the media community, and the African continent at large.
Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi state on Tuesday described the death of Dr Raymond Dokpesi as a colossal loss to the country. Bello who stated this in a condolence message said a big vacuum difficult to fill has been created in the nation’s broadcast media industry with death of Dokpesi, the Founder of DAAR Communications Plc.
“I was deeply saddened to hear of the passing of the esteemed media mogul and visionary behind AIT News Network and Raypower FM, Dr Raymond Dokpesi. Through his media platforms, he fearlessly embraced the responsibility of presenting unbiased news and providing a platform for diverse voices to be heard.
“Through his visionary leadership, he not only established reputable media outlets but also created countless employment opportunities for aspiring journalists, reporters, technicians, and other professionals in the media field.
Similarly, the Director General, National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies, Prof. Abubakar O. Sulaiman, stated that the deceased was a prominent figure in the media industry whose contributions had left a lasting impact.
“My heartfelt condolences to the Dokpesi family and the entire staff of AIT and Raypower FM. His departure is a significant loss for the entire media landscape. He was a pioneer and a visionary who consistently pushed the boundaries of journalism and entertainment. His unwavering dedication to excellence and innovation has undoubtedly shaped the media industry as we know it today.”
The Director General of National Council for Arts and Culture, (NCAC), Otunba Olusegun Runsewe described the demise of Chief Raymond Dokpesi as painful and unfortunate. He described Dokpesi as a patriotic Nigerian that would be remembered for a long time for his immense contribution to the development of Nigeria.
Expressing shock over the death of the late chairman Emeritus of the African Independent Television, Otunba Runsewe said that Dopkesi was a very innovative, enterprising, and detribilised Nigerian of uncommon courage. He noted that Dokpesi brought his wealth of knowledge and resourcefulness to bear in turning around the broadcast industry in Nigeria and pioneered the birth and phenomenal growth of the first private broadcast station in this part of the world.
“The Dopkesi business empire he established has provided direct employment to hundreds of Nigerians, impacting their lives, reducing poverty and stimulating the social economic growth of our nation. If every Nigerian of Dokpesi’s status can give back to the society the way he selflessly did poverty, crime and criminality will reduce in our society and Nigeria will be a better place for it” Otunba Runsewe said.