Lagos State Deputy governor-elect, Obafemi Hamzat, has described his late father, Oba Olatunji Hamzat, Olu of Afowora Sogade, Ogun State, as a great man who committed his life to the service of the people.
The monarch died on Sunday in Lagos during a brief illness related to old age and was buried according to Islamic rites, yesterday.
Hamzat, who spoke immediately after the news of his father’s death was confirmed, said his father served the people till his death.
He also recalled that the late traditional ruler was a frontline politician in Lagos State, in the progressive camp, through which he was elected House of Assembly member in 1979 under the Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) and later as a commissioner.
The late traditional ruler was also an active player in the First Republic, where he was a leading member of the Action Group (AG).
He was a leader in the progressive camp in Lagos with the return of democratic governance in 1999 as a member of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) and the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The deputy governor-elect described his late father as a devoted family man, statesman and committed man of faith who mentored generation of people in different fields of human endeavours until his death.
“I thank God for a life well spent by my father. He was a great man who brought up his children with the time honoured values of hard work, integrity and commitment to service. He impacted positively on many lives till his death. He played important roles in the politics of Lagos State from the days of Action Group.
“In the Second Republic, he was a chieftain of UPN and was at the fore-front of progressive politics in Nigeria and Lagos in particular.
“He was called upon to be the king of his community in Ogun State much later in his life. He served the community well. His reign brought development and progress. We will miss him and his father figure role,” he said.
Governor-elect, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in a statement by his Media Aide, Gboyega Akosile, recalled the service of the late monarch to the people of Lagos where he was a frontline politician and lived most of his adult life.
He urged the present generation of leaders to emulate the late monarch.
“While I extend my condolences to my brother, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat and the entire family, I must implore them to be comforted with the worthy life of our father and leader, Oba Olatunji Hamzat. He was a political leader of immense stature in Lagos and he played politics of service to the people as a House of Assembly member in 1979 and as a commissioner.
“He was a leader of men and women who came under his political tutelage in Lagos. He was for the progressive ideals and stood firmly for the welfare of the people as against that of selfish and personal aggrandisement.
“He was also a decent man who raised quality children and mentored a lot of young people. It is very sad that he had to go at a time like this when his wise counsel will be most needed. We are inspired by his example of selfless service to Lagos to continue to work to impact positively on the lives of Lagosians,” he said.