Malam Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, made this known in a statement in Abuja on Monday.
In the letter, written in Hausa language, the president told the bereaved wife, Hajiya Hauwa, the children and the entire family members that the loss of Funtua was not theirs alone, but that of the entire country.
He said: “Malam Isma’ila was of great assistance to me and my administration. He helped in many ways to strengthen the government and the country before his ultimate demise.”
The president recalled that Funtua, in his active politics, served as a minister.
”He was also a businessman and contractor who built several government buildings in Abuja.
“He was a director of Funtua Textile Mills for 30 years and chaired the Zamfara Textile Company. He was also a life executive member of the board of the International Press Institute (IPI).
“Nigerians of all shades and backgrounds have nothing but kind words for him.
“The late Isma’ila was reputed throughout his life for his kindness, generosity and support for public causes, the big and the not-so-big,” he remarked.
Buhari urged all those left behind by the deceased not to allow division in their ranks.
He prayed Allah to forgive the departed and grant him Aljannatul-Firdaus (paradise).