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Modu Sheriff, the father of a former governor of Borno State, Ali Sheriff, has died in a fire incident.

Late Mr Sheriff died in the early hours of Thursday in a fire incident that engulfed his Damboa road home in Maiduguri.

The deceased was the Galadima of Borno Emirate.

Sources close to the family said the aged patriarch of the Sheriffs, who had been managing an advanced-age related ailment, could not make it out of the fire that occurred around 3 a.m.

Maiduguri and other parts of Borno State were a few hours into a 14 days COVID-19 lockdown when the fire incident happened at the former governor’s family home.

The cause of the fire is yet to be established.

Though the family has not issued any statement concerning the passing of the deceased, messages of condolence have continued to flood the social media handles of the bereaved children.

The state government has not issued official condolence yet. But, the special adviser of the state governor on media, Isa Gusau, described the passage of Mr Sheriff as a huge loss to the state.

Mr Gusau said the deaths of late Abba Kyari, former chief of staff to President Muhammadu Buhari who died after contracting the COVID-19 disease, and that of Mr Sheriff who died in a fire incident were, according to Islamic belief, “acts of martyrdom.”

In a statement he posted on Facebook, Mr Gusau said the two prominent Borno personalities died as a result of disasters which he said are signs of absolution by God.

“There is one lesson the wise must learn from the deaths, in one week, of Malam Abba Kyari and Galadima Modu Sheriff, both prominent personalities from Borno State,” he said.

“Kyari died from a plague, while Galadima died from a fire incident.

“We all know the many things often said about personalities because most of the time, we humans like to pass judgment on others. I am also not a saint in this.

“Now, as many of Muslims already know, deaths by plague (epidemic and pandemic) and by fires, are amongst the seven classifications of deaths by shahada (martyrdom), as taught from hadith of our noble Prophet.

Sources close to the family said Mr Sheriff will be buried by 4 p.m. on Thursday.

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