David Ford MLA said: “Sam was committed to the restoration of devolution and played a significant role as Minister of the Environment in the first Assembly. He was somebody who was prepared to play his part in turning Northern Ireland around following the signing of the Good Friday Agreement.
“He will be warmly remembered by those involved in the Assembly and at Fermanagh District Council. He was a true gentleman who was respected by politicians from all parties.
“On behalf of the Alliance Party, I would like to pass on my condolences to his family and friends.”