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In life and death, Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande was a man of numerous firsts. And his impression, just as the designation – the main regular citizen legislative head of Lagos State, will suffer as long as the state exists.
"You mean Jakande is living in Ilupeju? I can barely handle it. I thought he lives in Lekki or Ikoyi," is consistently the cease from amateurs going to the Ilupeju home of Alhaji Jakande, prevalently known as LKJ. Brought into the world on July 29, 1929, he filled in as the principal legislative leader of Lagos between October 1979 and December 1983 when he strictly actualized the old Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN).
Until his demise, he was one of the straggling survivors among the gathering of famous Nigerians who served their separate states as first nonmilitary personnel lead representatives. He was Lagos's lead representative for a very long time and three months, having been reappointed briefly in 1983, just for the residency to be shortened by a military upset.
To date, almost 40 years after, his inheritances overrun the whole length and expansiveness of Lagos. Many market people, artisans, merchants, Danfo drivers, Okada riders, and money managers in Lagos probably won't have met him previously, yet his name regularly resounds among them. Any lead representative has not outperformed Jakande's record, be it military or regular citizen, that served a short time later.
Despite straddling the state's political circle like a mammoth, Baba Kekere, as he was affectionately called (a reference to Awolowo Junior), carried on with a friendly and discreet life delighted in the last piece of his life in his one-story working at Ilupeju.
Not at all like numerous legislators who amassed breathtaking abundance and assets in the wake of serving in any way and gaining houses and conspicuous vehicles, LKJ carried on with a humble life in retirement as a lawmaker and quite possibly the best media directors the nation ever created, having begun as a writer, ascending through the positions to turn into the Editor-in-Chief of Tribune papers, and then a paper distributor.
His No. 2 Bishop Street, Ilupeju home was without the stuff expected in a previous lead representative's family, particularly one of such status. Besides a couple of individuals who visited him to request help with getting occupations, the last lead representative's home was never a colony of exercises where individuals crowded.
To his endless credit that he lived long enough to watch his child, Lagos grew immensely consistently. He is satisfied that he had the option to give mass houses to Lagosians and executed free training.
Numerous individuals accept that Lagos State has not done well to value a man who gave his all in the state's assistance, who proclaimed thinking of administration above self and achieved undertakings and projects that straightforwardly contact individuals' existences today.
Tragically, however, like previous presidents and heads of state who had served this country, just last lead representatives who served from 1999 at the beginning of the fourth republic can guarantee admittance to significant assets from the annuity retirement benefits allotted to previous lead representatives. The individuals who served before 1999 were excluded from the services. This is where numerous experts flaw the current harvest of legislators for not enough dealing with the individuals who established the framework for them.
A tribal leader of Afenifere, Yinka Odumakin, noticed that Jakande while alive would not acknowledge the sort of annuity and retirement benefits that the lead representatives apportioned to themselves.
"What they are apportioning to themselves is indecent, criminal, and I don't think individuals like Jakande can take that. I don't have the foggiest idea why previous lead representatives ought not to be given their due and upheld in their mature age tolerably," he said.
Odumakin added: "He (Jakande) stays a reference purpose of administration in Lagos State. He recorded unrivaled accomplishments. No one has fulfilled his guideline. He dependably executed the four cardinal projects of the UPN in his four years regarding instruction, wellbeing, lodging, and most of them.
"The man has a name. He and Samuel Mbakwe of the old Imo State and Abubakar Rimi of Kano State, these were the old legislative heads of the 80s, and I figure we ought to have the option to remember them and give them an unmistakable spot in our public life however that has not been finished."
One zone where Jakande charmed himself to each Lagosian's hearts was in the execution of mass lodging projects across the express, a similar way he fabricated schools and set up numerous notorious undertakings that have become perpetual highlights of Lagos today.
His ease houses are in Ijaiye, Dolphin, Oke-Afa, Ije, Abesan, Iponri, Ipaja, Abule Nla, Epe, Amuwo-Odofin, Anikantamo, Surulere, Iba, Ikorodu, Badagry, Isheri/Olowu, and Orisigun. The houses were assigned to laborers straightforwardly and advantageously for them to pay.
Lateef Jakande's administration assembled the current Lagos State Secretariat, which houses all the state services just as the mainstream Round House, which ensuing lead representatives involved until Babatunde Fashola moved to the Lagos House.
He set out different landmarks upon was the House of Assembly unpredictable, State Television, Lagos Radio, and Lagos State University. He additionally settled the General Hospital on the whole zones in the express, a Teacher Training College and a College of Education, the Water Management Board and Waste Disposal Board.
Additionally, foremost among his accomplishments was the development of various waterworks to guarantee the accessibility of consumable water. Jakande was said to have modernized and expanded the Iju Water Works, which was first authorized in 1915. This raised its daily limit from 159 million to 204 million liters of water each day.
His organization built, restored, and restored the Epe/Ijebu-Ode Road, Oba Akran Avenue, Toyin Street, Town Planning Way, Alimosho-Idimu-Egbe Road, Idimu-Iba-LASU Road, and the new secretariat street, among others.
In the training territory, Jakande's administration brought grade schools up in Lagos State to 812 with 533,001 understudies (against 605 elementary schools with 434,545 students he met in 1979) and optional schools to 223 with 167,629 understudies (against 105 schools with 107,835 understudies in 1979).
His administration developed 11,729 study halls with a limit of 40 youngsters for each class between March and August 1980; by 1983, he had built more than 22,000 homerooms.
In July 1983, two business traveler boats named "Baba Kekere" and "Itafaji" to run the Mile 2 – Marina (CMS) course through the tidal pond were initiated by his administration to check the authority dispatch of the Lagos State Ferry Services. He set up the Small Scale Industries Credit Scheme, which went before the EKO Bank just as LASACO Assurance Company.
His endeavor to revolutionalize rail transportation in the state was subdued when Major Gen. Muhammadu Buhari brought down the nonmilitary personnel organization of Alhaji Shehu Shagari and dropped the Metroline project.
While numerous public authorities who, regardless of boisterous professes to have conveyed "the profits of the majority rules system," are not afraid to surge off to foreign nations at the smallest pardon, including grounds of infirmity, Jakande, history specialists state, didn't for once travel out of Nigeria during the four years he was Lagos State lead representative from 1979 to 1983.
If he went out of Nigeria on different occasions, he did it rather sparingly in an authority limit. He was a man of Spartan propensities, a man of incredible individual order and center who, first as a columnist and later as a lead representative, realized that exhibition was of the quintessence. He dominated in reporting, particularly as a proofreader at the Tribune gathering of papers.
His residency as lead representative was set apart by similar outcomes arranged energy. He avoided the office features, recanted self-aggrandizement, and chose, all things considered, to set about the undertaking of accomplishing specific objectives. He guaranteed free instruction for all young children in Lagos and conveyed on it. He vowed free medical services and got it going. He said he would give reasonable lodging to low and medium-pay workers, and he fabricated more than 20,000 units.
As a lead representative, Mr. Jakande didn't court the picture of an educated person; he was substance to sever to support. He didn't seem to be alluring and would not be expected to rule a discussion. He had his eyes set on the prize—conveying the products to his constituents.
His accomplishments didn't mean nonattendance of pundits. Some doubted the nature of offices at most of the new schools he assembled. Some contended that the medical clinics in the state were unremarkable. Moreover, no pundit could denounce Mr. Jakande of deception as a pioneer or of having two standards—one for himself, the other for the remainder of the state's inhabitants. He guaranteed that individuals from his family went to similar state-run schools and clinics.
He was once asked during a meeting: "Your youngsters went to government-funded schools. How would you feel today that pioneers send their youngsters to another country to class?" His answer was directly forthright: "I feel that it isn't right and unjustifiable for pioneers to instruct their kids abroad while different kids are taught in Nigeria. It isn't reasonable."
Those were the expressions of a man of profound feelings. If you are a president and demand, you are God's blessing to Nigeria, or a lead representative who fights that you are the actual meaning of respected authority, demonstrate it by living the path the more significant part of individuals you dare to administer live.
During his 85th birthday celebration in 2014, Jakande had communicated stun that he never figured he could achieve 85. As indicated by the previous lead representative, arriving at 85 was God's favor for him and his family.