Amb Rupia to be laid to rest in Dar tomorrow

THE  body of  the  former Chief  Secretary,  late Ambassador  Paul  Rupia arrived in Dar  es  Salaam from South Africa on Wednesday  ahead of his burial in the city tomorrow.

The  body  arrived  at the Julius  Nyerere International  Airport (JNIA) Terminal  I in afternoon  and  was received  by members of his  family, relatives  and former leaders including  former Chief  Secretary, Ambassador Ombeni Sefue, former  Foreign Affair  Minister, Bernard  Membe  and various  government  officer  and  mourners .

Speaking shortly before the body arrived at the JNIA Amb Sefue said the late Rupia would be remembered for his great contribution to the country, Africa and the globe at large.

“We have lost a great man who had a great contribution in civil services as well as in the globe. To many of us he was a brother and leader especially to those who served at the Foreign Affairs docket where he was our host when we joined the ministry and we learnt a lot from him,” said Amb Sefue.

He  further said  apart  from  mourning  him, his death is  a big  blow  to those  who served as  Chief  Secretaries including  Marten Lumbanga and Philemon Luhanjo since they have lost an icon and a mentor.

The chairman of the Association of Retired Tanzania Ambassadors (ARTA), Amb James Msekela, said they received the bad news with great sorrow and pain.

He said they have lost their member who was a treasure to the country and a link between the association and the foreign ministry and the government in general.

Several government officers said they will always remember the late Rupia for his exemplary contribution to the country as well as his distinguished services as a civil servant and diplomat.

The late Ambassador Paul, who was a second son of one of the country’s freedom fighters, politician and businessman , John  Rupia, was born in 1936  in  Shinyanga Region.

He was the fifth Chief Secretary of the United Republic of Tanzania, the post he served between 1986 and 1995.

He has died at the age of 86 years old on Friday last week in South Africa where he went for treatment.

And according to the family’s spokesman, Joseph Kahama, the body of the late Amb Rupia will be preserved at the Lugalo General Military Hospital.

The requiem will be held at St Alban Cathedral and the farewell will be held at the Karimjee grounds from 10:45am to around 2pm before heading to Kinondoni cemetery for the burial.

The late Amb Rupia began his professional career in public service in 1963 by joining the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where served in different capacities ranging from Foreign Service Officer, Head of Missions to Principal/Permanent Secretary, the post he served in his last two years in the ministry.

The late Amb Rupia served in the ministry for over 23 years.

Thereafter in 1986 the second  phase President, Ali Hassan Mwinyi  appointed  him to serve in his government as Chief Secretary until 1995  and  upon retirement from the civil service, Ambassador Rupia tried his hand in politics and was elected Member of Parliament for Ukonga Constituency in Dar es Salaam from 1995-2000.

He thereafter, he sat on many boards and special committees in different institutions ranging from education to the church, and banking.

The   late Ambassador Rupia attended his primary school education at St Andrew’s College, Minaki. He later joined The Aga Khan Secondary School in Dar es Salaam. He pursued his higher education at Cuttington University in Liberia, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. Immediately thereafter, he pursued his postgraduate degree in Public Administration at the New York University (NYU) in the United States of America.

The  late  Amb Rupia  who  also  had  the  privilege  to serve  as  the  country’s  permanent representative to the United Nations (UN) has left a widow, Rose Rupia and four children, Peter, Suzan, Pauline and Simon, in-laws and grandchildren.

Related Articles

Back to top button