Late Jakande was the Minister of Works under the Sani Abacha military regime
The first civilian governor of Lagos State, Alhaji Lateef Jakande passed on in the early hours of Thursday 11th February 2021 at the age of 91. Here are 10 things you need to know about him:
- Late Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande was born in the Epetedo area of Lagos Island on 23 July 1929.
- He studied at the Lagos public school at Enu-Owa, Lagos Island, then at Bunham Memorial Methodist School, Port Harcourt (1934–43). He studied briefly at King’s College in 1943 and then enrolled at Ilesha Grammar School in 1945, where he edited a literary paper called The Quarterly Mirror.
- In 1949 Jakande began a career in journalism first with the Daily Service and then in 1953 he joined the Nigerian Tribune. In 1956 he was appointed editor-in-chief of the Tribune by the owner Chief Obafemi Awolowo. His editorials were factual and forthright and were treated by the colonial powers with respect.
- After leaving the Tribune in 1975, Jakande established John West Publications and began to publish The Lagos News. He served as the first President of the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN).
- During his administration, he introduced housing and educational programs that targeted the poor, built new neighborhood primary and secondary schools, and provided free primary and secondary education.
- Among his achievement is the Lagos State University, a citadel that has become a fountain of knowledge that has produced stalwarts in different fields of human endeavors.
- Jakande’s government constructed over 20,000 housing units called ‘Jakande estate’ that gave a number of Lagosians the opportunity to own their own houses. The schools and housing units were built cheaply but were of great value
- READ ALSO: BREAKING! First civilian governor of Lagos, Alhaji Lateef Jakande dies at 91
- A man of clear vision, he also started a metro line project to facilitate mass transit within the Lagos metropolis. This project, if allowed by the military government that ousted his administration, would have made the perennial traffic gridlock that characterizes the state today none- existent.
- After the military take-over in 1983, Jakande was charged, prosecuted and convicted of treason, although later he was pardoned. After being freed, he accepted the position of Minister of Works under the Sani Abacha military regime, which earned him some criticism.
- Much later, Alhaji Jakande continued to play vital roles in politics because he believes that it is only through quality government that the masses can have a better life. Therefore, he became a senior member of All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) when the UNPP and APP merged. He was the first chairman of the Action Party of Nigeria (APN) when it was formed in November 2006.