Nigeria’s Vice President, Kashim Shettima has expressed deep sadness over the passing of Alhaji Usman Baba-Patigi, a Nollywood actor, fondly known as Samanja.
Shettima revealed this via his verified Facebook page, on Sunday.
Reacting, the vice president said, ”I am deeply saddened by the passing of Alhaji Usman Baba-Patigi, fondly known as Samanja.
”His presence on TV and radio brought joy and laughter to various generations of Nigerians.
”Through humor and sincerity, he explored our diversity and mirrored our society to remind us of our shared values and humanity.
”Like millions of other Nigerians, I am grateful for the enduring memory he created and the legacy he left behind after decades of contributions to arts and society.”
Shettima described the deceased as a pan-Nigerian ambassador and a patriot extraordinaire.
He added ”May Allah repose his soul and grant his loved ones the strength to bear this loss. Ameen.”
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Samanja died aged 81.
This was disclosed by a theater consultant, Husseini Shaibu, on Sunday via his Facebook page.
The cause of his death is yet unknown.
Shaibu said, “I have been reliably informed that light has dimmed on the veteran actor, Usman Baba-Pategi, popularly known as Samanja Mazan Fama.
“The actor who rode to national prominence in the 80’s playing Samanja in the defunct NTA drama series (about life of Soldiers in the barracks), titled ‘Samanja’, reportedly passed on around 12 midnight on Sunday.
“The last time I saw Samanja was in Lagos in 2019, when he was awarded the Fellowship of Theatre Arts (fta) by the Israel Eboh led National Association of Nigerian Theatre Arts Practitioners.
“Journey Well Sir…. Good Night Samanja!,” he said.