By Kazeem Ugbodaga
Former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan has expressed sadness over the death of renowned poet and playwright, Prof. John Pepper Clark-Bekederemo who passed on Tuesday, describing him as a man who deployed the potency of creative art in nation-building.
The former President noted that although the foremost writer has finally dropped his mighty pen, he would continue to live in his seminal literary works.
Dr. Jonathan made this known in an insightful condolence message to Delta State Government and members of late J.P. Clark’s family.
The former President further described the late writer as a witness of truth and advocate of justice who was truly committed to art and the progress of our nation.
Below is the full text of the condolence message:
“I condole with the Clark family, Delta State Government, the Ijaw Nation and all literary enthusiasts on the passing on of Prof John Pepper Clark, who died at the age of 85 on Tuesday, October 13.
“JP Clark was a master of the arts, who used the potency of words woven in stanzas and dialogues as tools for nation-building, national reconciliation as portrayed in works like ‘The Casualty’ and ‘State of the Union.’
“As a foremost poet and dramatist, JP Clark was a ‘witness of truth’, an advocate of justice whose commitment to Nigeria’s unity and progress was at the centre of his art and craft.
“He will be greatly missed for his creativity, patriotism and wisdom. His legacies of creativity, tact, and truth will continue to define his time while he lived with us.
“Although he has finally dropped his mighty pen and shed his earthly garb, J.P. Clark’s light will not grow dim because he will continue to live in his seminal literary works. His legacy is unfading for he has left indelible footprints on the sands of time.
“May God grant his soul eternal rest and comfort his family, friend and all sympathisers.”