A shareholder of Media Trust Limited, publishers of the Trust titles, Malam Wada Maida died on Monday at the age of 70.
Tributes A former General Manager/Managing Editor at Peoples Media Limited, Abdulazeez Abdullahi, described Wada’s demise as a huge loss not only to his family but to all those who knew him over the years.
“Nigerian journalism has again lost another of its strong pillars particularly here in the North. Despite his status nationally, he was very down to earth and unassuming. I will forever remember his fatherly counsel and guidance while working closely with him at Peoples Daily Newspaper. “It is to his singular credit that the paper is still on the newsstands today despite the challenging business environment. May Allah have mercy on him and forgive his shortcomings,” he said.
Also, a former Chief Operating Officer of the organisation, Malam Ali M. Ali, said, “A father is gone. Late Malam Wada Maida was a mentor, a father and a boss all rolled into one. Few matched his grace and gentle disposition.
For the years I headed the management of Peoples Media Limited, I reported directly to him as Chairman of the Board. He was always graceful never losing his cool even in the face of provocation.
“Soft spoken and gentle, he was a teacher in the boardroom as he was in the newsroom. Our path crossed in 1991 after he was elected President of the Guild of Editors. My career had only started a year earlier in the Triumph. Even then, he was already an icon having gotten to the editorial top of the News Agency of Nigeria as Editor-in-Chief.
“Effortlessly scholarly without being gaudy, he was the sort of mentor that would nudge you in the right direction imperceptibly without claiming credit. He had an incredible control of his emotions.
“I never saw him angry even in the face of provocation. With his death, the tribe of veteran journalists of Northern extraction has been further depleted. I had thought that with the passage of Ismaila Isa Funtua last month Wada was going to step into his shoes as a bridge builder but that was not to be.
“May Allah grant him eternal rest. Adieu my chairman,” he said. Daily Trust recalled that in June 2019, Maida was elected to the Executive Board of the International Press Institute (IPI), a global network of editors, media executives and leading journalists for press freedom.
The election was conducted at the last IPI World Congress in Geneva, Switzerland. Late Maida attended Rafindadi Primary School, 1958 – 63; Government College, Katsina, 1964-68; London School of Journalism, 1970; Nigerian Institute of Journalism, 1971-72; Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi, 1972-73; Aberdeen College of Technology, UK, 1975-77 and Pacific Western University, 1991.
He worked as Information Officer, Press, Kaduna State Ministry of Information, 1971-78; Editor, News Agency of Nigeria, 1978; Zonal Editor, 1978-81; Foreign Correspondent, 1981-84; Chief Press Secretary to Head of Federal Military Government and commander-in-Chief, 1984-85. Between 1985 and 1994, he was Editor-in-Chief, News Agency of Nigeria before he became the managing director of the media outfit.