Lateef Jakande

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Lateef Kayode Jakande
Governor of Lagos State
In office
October 1979 – December 1983
Preceded by Ebitu Ukiwe
Succeeded by Gbolahan Mudasiru
Minister of Works
In office
November 1993 – August 1998
Personal details
Born (1929-07-23) 23 July 1929 (age 85)
Lagos State, Nigeria
Occupation Journalist

Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande, (born 23 July 1929) was a journalist who became governor of Lagos State in Nigeria from 1979 to 1983, and later was Minister of Works under the Sani Abacha military regime (1993–98).[1][2]


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.[1]

In 1949 Jakande began a career in journalism first with the Daily Service and then in 1953 joining 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.[1] 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).[3]

Governor of Lagos State[edit]

Encouraged by Awolowo, he ran for election as executive governor of Lagos State in 1979, on the Unity Party of Nigeria platform, and was elected.[4] His administration was effective and open. He introduced housing and educational programs targeting the poor, building new neighbourhood primary and secondary schools and providing free primary and secondary education. He 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.[1] 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.[3]

Later career[edit]

After the military take-over in 1983, Jakande was charged, prosecuted and convicted of treason, although later he was pardoned.[1] After being freed, he accepted the position of Minister of Works under the Sani Abacha military regime, which earned him some criticism. He claimed that he had accepted the post under pressure from M. K. O. Abiola and other progressive leaders.[5] In a later interview, he said he had no regrets about the decision to serve.[6] However, his association with Abacha handicapped his career in politics after the restoration of democracy in 1999.[7]

Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande became a senior member of All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) when the UNPP and APP merged. In June 2002, he was "suspended" by a faction of the ANPP loyal to Chief Lanre Razaq.[8] Jakande was the first chairman of the Action Party of Nigeria (APN) when it was formed in November 2006. In May 2009, he was reported to be engaged a struggle for control of the party with his former ally, Dr. Adegbola Dominic.[9]

Many prominent people attended his 75th birthday celebration. At this event, Governor of Lagos State Bola Ahmed Tinubu said Jakande was worth celebrating for his life of consistent commitment to public service. Imo State Governor Achike Udenwa said Jakande's life and times epitomised "resilience, positive audacity, bravery and bravado, and a knack for excellence."[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Lai Olurode (21 July 2009). "Lateef Jakande at 80". The Guardian. UK. Retrieved 23 December 2009. [dead link]
  2. ^ "His Excellency Alhaji Lateef Kayaode Jakande, Governor of Lagos State". Library of Congress Pamphlet Collection - Flickr. Retrieved 2014-05-11. 
  3. ^ a b "Lateef Jakande at 80 (2)". The Guardian. UK. 4 August 2009. Retrieved 23 December 2009. [dead link]
  4. ^ "Lagos State Cabinet". Library of Congress Africa Pamphlet Collection - Flickr. Retrieved 2014-05-12. 
  5. ^ OLUWOLE FAROTIMI (23 July 2009). "I have no regret serving under Abacha – Jakande". Daily Sun. Retrieved 23 December 2009. 
  6. ^ Soyombo Opeyemi (28 August 2009). "The 'No Regrets' Comments of Alhaji Lateef Jakande". Daily Independent (Lagos). Retrieved 23 December 2009. 
  7. ^ Diran Odeyemi (16 February 2004). "COMPARING NOTES: BETWEEN LATEEF KAYODE JAKANDE AND OLABODE IBIYINKA GEORGE". NigeriaWorld. Retrieved 23 December 2009. 
  8. ^ Tunde Alao and Yewande Otinuga (24 June 2002). "My suspension a huge joke, says Jakande". The Guardian. UK. Retrieved 23 December 2009. 
  9. ^ DURO ADESEKO (23 May 2009). "Jakande in messy fight over party ownership". Daily Sun. Retrieved 23 December 2009. 
  10. ^ Clifford Ndujihe (23 July 2004). "Eminent Nigerians honour Jakande at 75". Online Nigeria Daily News. Retrieved 23 December 2009. 

External links[edit]