President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Tuesday described as “a loss to the nation”, the demise of the Late Ghanaian soldier, Major General Francis Vib-Sanziri, who died on Friday, April 19, 2019 at Eilat, Israel.
He said the late soldier’s “dramatic and unexpected death” was a very big blow to the country, stating that such happenings called for a renewed faith in the Almighty, “because it is He who disposes, and it is He who understands what we, ordinary mortals cannot.”
The President said this when he called at the late General’s residence at the Michel Camp, near Tema to commiserate with his family and find out arrangements for his burial.
Maj. Gen. Vib-Sanziri, 62, until his passing, was the Head of Missions and Force Commander of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force in Israel. He was appointed to that position by the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres in October 2017 to head the Multi-National Force.
President Akufo-Addo who recalled his involvement in the deployment of the late General to Israel, said ever since he (Maj. Gen. Vib-Sanziri) went on that mission, “all the reports that have come to me from Israel, from our own military and from the office of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, spoke of a fine gentleman who has discharged his duties well, he was a credit to our nation.”
He told the family that; “Your grief is not confined to you or your immediate family. The nation of Ghana stands in mourning with you. He was a public officer, a military officer of our state and his assignment was a public one being done to the benefit of the Ghanaian republic, so in his passing, we are all involved in it, and my presence here is to let you know that you have the entire solidarity of the nation with you”
The President assured that family that would be involved in the arrangements that were being made to give Maj. Gen. Vib-Sanziri a befitting send off, saying, “He deserves it for the work he did for our country, he deserves it as a good citizen.”
“I extend to you our deepest condolence of the death of this fine soldier and to let you know that all of us are in full solidarity in this moment and in the preparations that would be made to give him a fitting send off,” he said.
A brother of the deceased, Gregory Sanziri who spoke on behalf of the family told the President that his presence and condolences had brought calm to the family that had been shaken since the late soldier passed away.
He told the President that the family was yet to put a date on when to have the final funeral rites for the late General, and said that information would be communicated to the Presidency when the family makes a determination.
The President was accompanied by Foreign Affairs Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchway, Defence Minister Dominic Nitiwul, Interior Minister Ambrose Derry, the Inspector General of Police David Asante Apeatu, the Chief of Defence Staff, Lt. Gen. Obed Akwa and other senior government officials.