Ambode, Adebule, Obasa mourn former Lagos deputy governor

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, on Sunday expressed sadness over the passage of a former Deputy Governor of the State, Rafiu Jafojo.

Alhaji Jafojo, who was deputy during the administration of former Governor Lateef Jakande in the Second Republic, died on Saturday in his Lagos residence at the age of 80.

Ambode, in a condolence message signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Habib Aruna, said Jafojo’s death was a great loss to the state, adding that his contribution to the development of Lagos will not be forgotten in a hurry.

“Alhaji Jafojo was part and parcel of an administration during the Second Republic that has been widely applauded across Nigeria for achieving several milestones which is still being made reference to.

“He was an astute politician who was very loyal to the course of developing the state and, together with Alhaji Lateef Jakande, they formed a strong partnership and set the template for the development of Lagos State.

“That he was a progressive minded politician was never in doubt. Little wonder he joined the defunct Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN), which was founded by the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, on which platform Baba Jakande and himself rode to emerge as governor and deputy governor of Lagos State in October 1979,” Ambode said.

Awolowo (left), Jakande and Jafojo (right) at a UPN rally in Lagos in the Second Republic.
Awolowo (left), Jakande and Jafojo (right) at a UPN rally in Lagos in the Second Republic.

The governor said that Jafojo, despite his age, continued to contribute his quota to the development of the state and always made himself available for any course that was geared towards moving it forward.

“On behalf of the government and good people of Lagos State, I want to express our heartfelt condolence to the family of Alhaji Jafojo on this great and irreparable loss. He surely paid his dues and Lagosians will always remember him,” Ambode said.

Deputy Governor Oluranti Adebule also described Jafojo’s death as a big loss  to the state considering  his various contributions to the development of the state and his wealth of experience.

Adebule stated this on Sunday when she led a state government delegation, which included the Honourable Commissioner for Home Affairs, Dr AbdulHakeem Abdul Lateef, on a condolence visit to the family of the deceased.

She described the late former deputy governor as a seasoned administrator, grassroots mobiliser and a community leader of repute. The deputy governor stated that Jafojo’s legacy of hard work, selfless service and his genuine commitment  to good governance will forever be in the minds of Lagosians.

Adebule, who was received by the wife of the deceased, Mrs Mosunmola Jafojo, assured the family that the Ambode-led administration would do everything  humanly possible to immortalise him and ensure  that  his ideals for good  governance  is achieved by doubling efforts in the implementation of people’s oriented programmes.

In his condolence message, Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, stated that with the demise of Jafojo, Lagos and Nigeria have lost a great patriot whose penchant for equity and justice was well known.

Obasa, who reacted through a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Musbau Rasak, described the deceased as one of the founding fathers of modern Lagos.

“Papa was a very patriotic Nigerian who was well known for his progressive pro-democratic ideals and (as) promoter of equity and justice.

“Together with Alhaji Lateef Jakande and other members of the 1979-1983 Class, they laid a solid foundation for the development and growth of the state.

“This is the foundation from which subsequent administrations built upon to make the state live up to its sobriquet of Centre of Excellence,” Obasa said.