…Michael Otedola was the second executive governor of Lagos State
Sir Michael Otedola was the second executive Governor of Lagos. He was born on this day in 1926. Nigeria Today presents his profile for education and in hope that his life could inspire you. Biodun Busari writes.
The historic legacy of Sir Michael Otedola as the ninth governor of Lagos State was astounding. He contested for the governorship seat of Lagos State under the defunct National Republican Convention (NRC) and won, thereby becoming the second executive governor under the botched third republic.
He was a veteran journalist, public relations expert and astute politician. Though he had a brief stay as the helmsman in Lagos from January 1992 to November 1993, his desire to transform Lagos to an excellent city chronicled the name “Centre of Excellence” till today.
Born on the 16th July 1926, Sir Otedola died on 5th May, 2014 at the ripe age of 87.
Sir Otedola hailed from Epe town and won a scholarship to study Journalism at Regent Street Polytechnic, London. After his graduation in 1958, he worked as a teacher and later a reporter at the St. Pancras Chronicle, London. His career blossomed as he became a reporter, then sub-editor at The Guardian and The Times in England.
His return to the country in 1959 offered him an opportunity to become an Information Officer in the Western Nigeria government.
He was later appointed the Editor of the Western Nigeria Illustrated. Two years later, he ventured into public relations, serving Western Nigeria Television/Western Broadcasting Service from 1961 to 1964. And later on with Mobil Oil Group of Companies from 1964 to 1977 continuing as a consultant to Mobil after leaving the company.
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He parlayed his passion for excellence into politics and became Lagos State Governor from 1992 to 1993 under the aegis of one of the two parties allowed by then Military President, General Ibrahim Babangida, National Republican Convention (NRC). He left office when General Sani Abacha came into power.
His administration facilitated establishing the Yaba College of Technology campus in Epe, his home town.
After leaving office, he resumed his career as a writer. He also thrived as a consultant to a wide spectrum of businesses and organisations, and becoming a philanthropist along the way out of his liberal personality.
In February 2010 ThisDay newspaper recognised him as one of the 15 distinguished Nigerians who had won Lifetime Achievement Awards.
He is the father of the billionaire oil magnate, Femi Otedola, who became the owner of Nigerian oil giant Zenon Petroleum and Gas Limited.
The Michael Otedola College of Primary Education was named after him after his departure as a tribute to his exceptional life.
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