Lateef Kayode Jakande, former chair of the Executive Board of the International Press Institute (IPI), passed away on February 11 in Lagos, Nigeria. He was 91.
Jakande, a former journalist and governor of the Lagos state, was a member of IPI Executive Board between 1961 and 1968, Vice chair of the Board from 1968 to 1972 and then the chair from 1972 to 1974. He was the first African to lead the IPI Board.
“Lateef Kayode Jakande was a great asset to journalism and journalists’ rights in Nigeria. He set up institutions that have contributed to strengthening journalism and training younger generations to become professional journalists”, IPI Executive Director Barbara Trionfi said. “I feel very privileged to have had the opportunity to meet Mr. Jakande in person and discuss his vision for journalism in Nigeria. His contribution to IPI in different roles on the Executive Board during the early years of the network will always be valued by the membership.”
Born in 1929, Jakande jumped into the field of journalism in 1943 when he began editing The Quarterly Mirror while he was still studying. He went on to embrace journalism as a full-time career when in 1949 he joined the Daily Service newspaper and a few years later moved to Nigerian Tribune. He became the editor-in-chief of The Tribune in 1956 and left in 1975 to set up his own publication business that published The Lagos News.
Jakande became the first president of the Newspaper Proprietors Association of Nigeria. Later as the governor of Lagos, he established Radio Lagos, Lagos Television and was also instrumental in setting up the Nigeria Editors’ Guild, the National Union of Journalists’ and the National Institute of Journalism.