Pa. Lateef Kayode Jakande, fondly called ‘Baba Kekere’ and ‘Action Man’. He was born in the Epetedo area of Lagos Island in Lagos State on July 29, 1929. His parents were from Omu Aran, Kwara State. He attended Ilesha Grammar School in 1945, where he edited a literary paper called, ‘The Quarterly Mirror’.
He started his journalism carrier in 1949 with the Daily Service and joined Nigerian Tribune in 1953. He was appointed editor-in-chief of the Tribune by the owner, the late Sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo. He was a prolific writer with astute uprightness. Pa. Jakande founded John West Publications after he left Tribune and began to publish ‘The Lagos News”. He was the first President of the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN)
As advised by the late Chief Awolowo, he became the governor of Lagos in 1979 on the platform of the Unity Party of Nigeria. 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 Lagos State University. Pa. Jakande’s government constructed over 30,000 housing units of immense value cheaply. He also completed the construction of the General Hospital in Gbagada and lkorodu and built about 20 health centres within the state. As a governor of high esteem and reputation, he established 23 local government councils which were later disbanded by the military junta.
Visionary Pa. Jakande also started first of its kind metro line project to facilitate mass transit. The laudable project was myopically halted by the military and his tenure as Governor of Lagos ended when the military forcefully seized power on 31 December 1983. So far, till date, Pa. Lateef Jakande, a Yoruba traditional Chief has an unbeatable record as the best Governor Lagos state ever hard.
Chief Lateef Jakande has received so many awards and recognitions. He is also a member of so many professional organizations.