Good night Baba Jakande

WE are in deep mourning as death took one of the most dependable Awoists, Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande on Thursday at the ripe age of 91. Papa LKJ was the last of the UPN Governors Awolowo sent out in the second Republic to convince this impossible country that progressive governance was a possibility.

I was at his 90th birthday in company of Chief Ayo Adebanjo and Oba Oladipo Olaitan who served faithfully as adviser to Jakande in his memorable years as Lagos governor and we shared the company of his colleague in Borno, Mohammed Goni whose government I benefitted from the generosity of Lagos under Jakande.

Apart from being a star performer in implementing the five cardinal programmers of the UPN, Chief Jakande was faithful to Lagos and Lagosians. He reclaimed the whole of Lekki scheme without allocating a plot for himself. He constructed a dual carriage way from Lekki to Epe without the burden of a toll gate on the people. Those who came to profiteer after him added a lane after 40 years to the solid ones LKJ built and toll gates sprang up everywhere.

Awo must be in an exceptional mood that a worthy disciple has come home to join him. The impact of Baba Jakande is everlasting and I’m pained that COVID-19 prevented me from seeing him in his last days on earth as he was such a great inspiration. We can never forget him.

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