The body of the Justice Sylvanus Nsofor, Nigeria’s immediate-past ambassador to the U.S., has left America on his final journey back home.
His casket, draped in the Nigerian flag, departed the Dulles International Airport, Washington, on Wednesday morning aboard a Delta Airlines plane.
At the airport to bid him farewell were officials of the U.S. Department of State, and Nigerian embassy officials led by the Charge D’Affaires, Mrs Jane Adams-Abanulo.
A brief departure ceremony for the deceased included a guard of honour mounted by U.S. military service members at the cargo section of the airport.
Nsofor’s wife, Jean, and son, Cross, are accompanying the body that is expected to arrive at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, on Thursday morning.
Representatives of the U.S. consulate in Lagos and officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will receive the body on arrival in Nigeria.
The 85-year-old retired justice of Nigeria’s Court of Appeal died at a U.S. hospital on Dec. 10 after a brief illness.
Born on March 17, 1935, in Oguta, Imo State, Nsofor graduated from the defunct Holborn College of Law, London, in 1962.
He also bagged an LL.M from the London School of Economics in 1964.
Nsofor assumed office as Nigeria’s ambassador to the U.S. on Nov. 13, 2017, succeeding Prof. Adebowale Adefuye, who died towards the end of his tenure.
At a service of songs held in his honour by the Nigerian Embassy in Washington on Tuesday evening, speakers took turns to eulogise Nsofor for his virtues such as discipline, incorruptibility and passion for justice.