Welcome to Temmy Balogun’s Blog , Its a motivation monday and am delighted to share with you this outstanding article about a Nigerian pacesetter whom I believe deserves more recognition than presently being given.
Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande is a visionary icon who went a long way to proof possible what people saw as impossible many years back. He made a great use of his position as a governor to change the faces of important sectors in Lagos; a state which is now well known across the globe as a commercial city and face of Nigeria.
His administration changed the face of education,health,water system, and housing in Lagos state. He gave a proper definition of true governance through his actions and laid an everlasting foundation which can never be overuled out.
Today our spolight is on how his legacy changed the Lagos education system from running shifts in teaching youths many years back by reshapening it to a normal and acceptable system across the world.
Sincerely speaking i was overwhelmed when i stormed on Alhaji Jakande’s legacy documentary on Television Continental today! I have always known that he made a great impact in Lagos state’s educational sector but i never imagined the system as at when he resumed office as a governor was nothing to write whom about but the documentary i watched gave me a true picture. I know many out there will be very surprise just like i was to know that the Lagos state primary and secondary education of today was changed from being very unconducive to what we have today by an Icon, who isn’t well celebrated in my opinion after reading the article below.
Relax and a little part of Lagos state history you’ve missed and kindly drop your comments below….
Alhaji Lateef Jakande was born in the Epetedo area of Lagos State 29 July 1929 .His both parents are from Omun Aran Kwara State. 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, Lagos 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 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).
Life as a Governor
He ran for election as executive governor of Lagos State in 1979, on the Unity Party of Nigeria platform and defeated his opponents, Adeniran Ogunsanya of NPP and Sultan Ladega Adeniji Adele of National Party of Nigeria and was subsequently sworn in as governor.
According to the commentators on his administration documentary the main thing that stood his manifesto out and gave him a edge over his opponnent was his promise to ‘abolish the shift educational system‘ in Lagos as at that time. Many were said to have being taken aback by this idea.
According to his Chief Press Secretary Mr Bayo Osiyemi, Alhaji Jakande worked very hard to make sure his goals for Lagos state were met. He recalled that as much as himself and some others believed in Alhaji Jakande’s goals, some others never saw the possibility of him achieving this set goals.
Unlike most politicians of today Alhaji Lateef Jakande started working on achieving his promises immediately after resuming office.
The primary and secondary school as at when he resumed office was run based on morning, afternoon and evening shifts as there were just few school buildings and facilities available for students interested in education.
Another commentator made it known that Alhaji Jakande achieved his goals of eradicating the shift education system by building schools, he further explained that it got to the point where he launched like 10 schools a day. Isnt this awesome!
His administration created enough schools for youths and gave many the chance of becoming what they have dreamt to be. His free educational system was enjoyed by many who are today doctors, lawyers, engineers among others.
He introduced housing and educational programs targeting the poor and established the Lagos State University. Jakande’s government constructed over 30,000 housing units. The schools and housing units were built cheaply, but were of great value.Some of the housing units include low cost estates in Amuwo-Odofin, Ijaiye, Dolphin, Oke-Afa, Ije, Abesan, Iponri, Ipaja, Abule Nla, Epe, Anikantamo, Surulere, Iba, Ikorodu, Badagry.
To fund some of the projects, Jakande increased the tenement rates and price of plots of land in affluent areas of Victoria Island and Lekki Peninsula and the processing fees for lottery, pools and gaming licenses. He also completed the construction of the General Hospital in Gbagada and Ikorodu and built about 20 health centres within the state. As a governor, he established 23 local government councils which were later disbanded by the military. He also started a metroline project to facilitate mass transit. The project was halted and his tenure as Governor ended when the military seized power on 31 December 1983.
Alhaji Lateef Jakande who is presently age 87 is proud of his achievements and very happy about what Lagos become today. When asked what he would like to be remembered for he said ‘Service to the people’ This is a statement i regard as priceless!
Reading through this article many will agreed with me that he deserves more recognition than presently given and i believe also this will inspire individuals to always stand for things that help make peoples lives better in any position occupied and history will never rule such individuals out.