Raymond Dokpesi, the creator of DAAR Communications and the proprietor of AIT and Raypower, was laid to rest Friday at his home in Agenebode, Estako East local government area of Edo State.
Dokpesi died on May 29, at the age of 71, after collapsing while using a treadmill machine to recover from an unidentified ailment. At 4:35 p.m., he was buried amid tears from family members, close acquaintances, sympathisers, and Agenebode residents who had come to pay their respects to the late media mogul.
Ademola Adeleke, the governor of Osun State, and Philip Shaibu, the deputy governor of Edo State, were among the important politicians that attended the funeral.
The funeral liturgy was held on the open field of St. Peters Secondary School in Agenebode, and the interment followed at his home.
The Bishop of Auchi Diocese, Most Rev Gabriel Dunia, praised the late Dokpesi as “humility personified” in his sermon. Dunia stated that Dokpesi gave to charity during his lifetime.
“Charity, as the saying goes, covers a multitude of sins.” He represented kindness, repented, and returned to represent his creator.
“We must return to God, and we must use this occasion, whoever we are, to do so.” We must carry on his charitable work because the dead can no longer do so, and he stated that even after his death, he will continue to do so through his media.”
Shaibu stated in his speech that the late Dokpesi was a bold politician who was not scared to “speak truth to power.” Dokpesi is now synonymous with the media in Nigeria and beyond the African continent.
National Security Adviser (NSA) to President Bola Tinubu, Nuhu Ribadu; immediate past governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa; Senator representing Edo North, Adams Oshiomhole; former Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, Ndidi Elumelu; Francis Alimikhena; and former Chief of Staff to President Goodluck Jonathan, Mike Ogiadomhe, Senator Ben Oni, and Chief Mike Ozekhome were also present.
Dokpesi’s family held a farewell service for the late founder of DAAR Communications in Abuja on Tuesday.
Dignitaries in attendance included former President Goodluck Jonathan, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate in the last general election and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki, and former Delta State Governor James Ibori.
Jonathan stated during the ceremony that Dokpesi inspired him to believe that “there was life after the election” when he lost the 2015 presidential election.
Atiku also stated that he has known the deceased for over 40 years because of his concern for and dedication to the development of Nigeria. Dokpesi, a maritime engineer, founded Raypower, Nigeria’s first private radio station, in 1994, then AIT in 1996. In October, he would have turned 72.