President Zillur Rahman no more
President Zillur Rahman died at a Singapore hospital Wednesday, family sources said. He was 84.
Doctors at Mount Elizabeth Hospital declared Rahman dead at 4:47pm Bangladesh time, according to Mahbubuzzaman, the Bangladesh ambassador to Singapore.
The president’s only son, daughters and close relatives were present at the hospital at this time.
“The president’s body will be brought by a special flight of Biman around the noon tomorrow (Thursday),” Md Shiplu Zaman, assistant press secretary to the late president, told The Daily Star.
Rahman was admitted to the facility on March 10 as he was flown to Singapore by an air ambulance for critical lung infection a day after he was rushed to Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in Dhaka.
A veteran politician, who celebrated his 85th birthday earlier this month, was installed as the 19th President in 2009 after Awami League was elected in the landmark December 2008 general elections.
A lawyer by profession, Rahman was a close associate of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and is regarded as a key figure in consolidating the ruling Awami League's unity at different times after 1975 coup when Sheikh Mujib was killed along with most of his family members.
Acting president and parliamentary speaker Abdul Hamid Advocate has announced a three-day state mourning at his death.
Speaker Abdul Hamid became the acting president on March 14 to discharge the function of President in accordance with the Constitution.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Leader of the Opposition in the parliament Khaleda Zia and Speaker Abdul Hamid expressed deep condolence at the death of the president.
They prayed for the salvation of his departed soul.
As the news spread, condolences poured on different social networking websites and blogs. Most of such posts said the country lost an honest and dedicated politician.
With a report from state news agency BSS.