The newly reconstructed stadium at Onikan, Lagos, is to be known as Mobolaji Olufunso Johnson Arena, the governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has announced.
Sanwo-Olu pronounced this yesterday during a ‘Day of Honour’ event organised to celebrate the exit of the first Military Governor of Lagos State, Brigadier-General Mobolaji Johnson.
Paying glowing tributes to the late Johnson, the governor described him as a man who saw the future and worked hard to achieve the Lagos of the dreams of its residents.
The late Johnson passed away in his Ilupeju country home on October 30, 2019, at the age of 83.
Sanwo-Olu said the late Johnson’s selflessness in service and excellent achievements had been a source of inspiration to successive administrations in Lagos.
Describing the former administrator as a quintessential manager of resources and people, Sanwo-Olu said the late Johnson’s personality symbolised integrity, humility, fairness and justice.
He said, “He never threw his weight around, though he was a man of power. As a man of authority, he was never authoritarian. Though a soldier, he never ruled with an iron hand; he was compassionate.”
The late Johnson’s administration, Sanwo-Olu said, started the construction of Ikorodu and Mushin General Hospitals. He added that the former administrator also modernised the Lagos Island General Hospital and expanded its facilities.
Aside building the maternity annex at the Onikan Health Centre and an additional ward at the Igbobi Orthopedic Hospital, Johnson, the governor said, also established five new Government Colleges in each of the five divisions of the state.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, also spoke glowingly of the deceased, describing him as “a servant leader and a man of incorruptible character”.
Tinubu said, “I salute a courageous officer who never compromised the rules of the military despite becoming a state administrator at a young age. He put the people at the cornerstone of his administration and economic policies. Having met 10,000 Pounds in the treasury of the state when he assumed office, the late Johnson deployed his ingenuity and talent to set the pace for the state’s modernisation and development.”
The Asiwaju recalled that when 10 state administrators were arrested for corrupt practices when General Murtala Muhammed took over as Head of State in 1975, only the late Johnson was the military governor absolved of corruption.
A former governor of Ogun State, Aremo Olusegun Osoba, in his tribute, recalled that all the late Johnson’s children attended public schools and rode in public transport despite their father being the reigning military administrator.