By HENRY TYOHEMBA , Abuja
The Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN) yesterday said the death of Dr. Sam Nda-Isaiah, the chairman and publisher of LEADERSHIP Group of Newspapers, was a huge loss which was even more devastating and painful because he was not only a colleague but a friend to all in the industry.
In a statement signed by Malam Kabiru A. Yusuf, the president and Alhaji Mohammed Idris, the Secretary, NPAN said Nda-Isaiah’s commitment to the values and objectives of the association was unflagging to the very end, as he was together with the rest only last week in Lagos when elections into the national executive council of the association were held, and Sam was elected as an ex-officio member.
“Sam Nda-Isaiah has left indelible footprints in the annals of the Nigerian media. He started as a publisher right away with LEADERSHIP Confidential, a subscription-based monthly newsletter which, in 2004, he transformed into Leadership, a gutsy, stylish weekly newspaper that caught the eye of Nigerians as soon as it hit the newsstands.
“As a popular columnist, Sam told the truth to power. His style was brash, bare-knuckle and unapologetic. For his constancy in that, he was mostly regarded as patriotic.
“His desire to transform his beliefs into policy made him to make a foray into party politics where he ran for president in the 2015 general elections. Politics made him to drop his column but the general direction of his newspapers was consistent with what he had been writing.
“The NPAN will sorely miss Sam as an active member and for his immense contribution to the development of journalism in Africa,” the statement said.
The association consoled his wife Zainab and their children, as well as his extended family, friends and admirers with the fact that Sam’s concrete contributions to the development of the country in particular and the continent in general were visible and appreciated.