By Muyiwa Olayinka
For the younger generations that were not born during the second republic, many of them may not know or familiar with Alhaji Lateef Kayode Jakande, popularly known as LKJ. LKJ was was an associate and a faithful disciple of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. He was an Awoist and deeply committed to Awo’s ideals and principles.
He was jailed along with Awo in the infamous treasonable felony, a ploy to send Awo to political Siberia. But God has a way of rewarding a just man that was committed to his principles. Awo was left off the jail term or is it the gulag and went to serve the military regime of General Gowon as the Vice Head of state, a position that was alien to military tradition.
Awo along with others successfully prosecuted the civil war and did not commit Nigeria into debt.
If you live in Lagos, you must have heard of Jakande housing estates. These estates were built by LKJ and were mostly owned and inhabited by the masses in Lagos LKJ made many masses to become landlords and landladies in Lagos. The allocations were transparently done. LKJ was a communist that loved the masses with all his heart unlike all these modern day “Awoists” that are pretenders.
They build estates masses could not afford.
They build markets ordinary people cannot afford yet they claim they are Awoists just by wearing Awo’s horn rimmed glasses and his self styled cap.
Infact in the vaunted “Lagos Master Plan”, there is no room for the masses. The former governor was paying some masses “stipends” to relocate from Lagos. He arrogantly concluded Lagos is not meant for the masses.
Another ex governor is the landlord of Lagos and he calls himself lion of Bourdillon, the bullion van man. He wears Awo’s horn rimmed glasses but he’s a mercantilist politician that is ready to trade off his people interest for his selfish ambition.
Those that abolish history in our curriculum has done a great damage and has deprived the younger generation the great exploits of some of the labours of our heroes’ past. LKJ is one of our heroes, an angel that has gone home to meet his creator.
LKJ was a great lover of the masses, he’s not pretentious and he was deeply committed to his Islamic beliefs. I use to tell many that it’s not about religion, it’s about sincerity of purpose and exhibiting pure heart to serve mankind. LKJ has done his bits, he has run a good race and gone to join his creator at the full ripe age of 91.
“Baba Kekere” is not without a blemish, he submitted himself to frailty of man when he refused to leave the late googled General Abacha’s evil government. You can accuse him of being stubborn and rigid to his belief but you can never accuse him of corruption and self enrichment.
For four years in office as the first executive and elected governor of Lagos, he did not live in a government house but was operating from his private Ilupeju home. He built Alausa the current seat of power in Ikeja, and never occupied any of the imposing buildings for a day. He built Lagos State University (LASU), Lagos TV Ikeja, constructed Lekki expressway to mention a few of his legacy projects before the shylocks and bourgeois in Lagos improved, enlarged the road and put a toll gate there.
Yes I’m talking about the Lekki expressway that houses the toll gate that sulked the blood of innocent Nigerian youths that were slaughtered and mowed down like rams by “unknown soldiers” on the dark night of October 20, 2020.
May the soul of the real builder LKJ, of Lagos rest in perfect peace. And when LKJ gets to heaven, please tell the late sage Awo that the remnants of the so called followers left in Nigeria are criminals, devilish and pretentious that are not committed to his ideals. They are wolves in sheep’s clothing, ready to sacrifice the Yoruba race over a plate of porridge.
Sun reee omo Yoruba rere, the great lover of the masses