By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Lagos state Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has constituted a special committee with the responsibility to organise a befitting Eight Day “Fidau” prayers session for the soul of late first civilian Governor of the state, Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande, fondly called “Babakekere.”
He died last Thursday at the age of 91 and laid to rest on the second day, Friday, at Volts and Gardens Cemetery, Ikoyi, amid eulogies and prayers.
The state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, revealed this on Tuesday, while speaking with Vanguard on preparation to hold the prayer event.
According to Omotoso, “Mr Governor has set up a special committee, headed by the Chief of Staff, CoS, Mr.Tayo Ayinde, which I’m also a member.
“The committee will be liaising with the family of the late politician and firmer governor to organise a befitting With Day “Fidau” according to Islamic rites.
“We will give more details on the planned event as soon as all arrangements are concluded. We are fully in touch with the family members.”
Recall that Sanwo-Olu had earlier last Sunday, met the widow, Alhaja Abimbola Jakande, children and relatives on a condolence visit and the Third Day “Fidau” organized for the deceased at the family’s residence in Ilupeju area of the state.
In the entourage, include: Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Folasade Jaji, Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Tayo Ayinde, Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, Head of Service, Mr. Hakeem Muri-Okunola; Attorney General/Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyo Onigbanjo,
Sanwo-Olu, in his remarks, said that, “Lateef Kayode Jakande, LKJ, scored several firsts in infrastructural developments that even subsequent governors have not been able to match in Nigeria.
Speaking with newsmen after the event, Sanwo-Olu, said, “We are here to give Glory to Almighty Allah for giving him many years on earth. No matter how long you stay on earth, you don’t want to lose your loved ones, especially people that had been tremendous, that had been outstanding in our environment.
“But to have lived for 91 years, we believe the Almighty Allah had been gracious to him. And he was not a man we had to be carrying from one hospital to another, it wasn’t that he was terminally ill, it wasn’t that he had illnesses or diseases that we could not treat, at the right time and at the right age, he was called up to Almighty Allah and that is the testimonial that he had lived a good life and he had been at peace with humankind and also with his creator the way he left us peaceful and that reflects what LKJ had been to each and everyone of us.
“Me personally, growing up I remember how he came to power in 1979, as the first civilian governor of Lagos State from 1979 to 1983, the quality, what he stood for, what he had done still stands 40 years and beyond.
“His tenacity, his human kindness, his love for the poor, his genuine empathy, his resolve to ensure that the people he govern over get the very best, are the testimonials that we all still remember today and are very fresh.
“Alhaji Jakande scored several firsts that even subsequent governors have not been able to match and I say here with all sense of humility that indeed he has been a builder of our time, a man that laid the foundation of a Lagos that all of us are attempting and are trying to develop and put layers on and his exist cannot be easily quantifiable.
“We can only take solace in the fact that he had lived a good life, he had been a very decent man, he had been a very humble man and he had reflected what true humanity is all about. It is a source of inspiration to all of us, it is a clarion call for all of us that are in position of leadership now to think and reflect on how also would be remembered after our time.”