HISTORY FOCUS (104) – ADMIRAL ADEKUNLE LAWAL
Admiral Adekunle Shamusideen Lawal was born on 8 February 1934, in Lagos Nigeria. He was appointed the military governor of Lagos State, Nigeria in July 1975, after the coup that brought General Murtala Muhammed to power. Admiral Lawal held the position of Lagos State Military Governor until 1977. He received a transfer to Imo State and became the State’s governor in 1977. Admiral Adekunle Lawal held this position until July 1978, after which he resumed his career in the Nigerian Navy.
Admiral Adekunle Shamusideen Lawal started his early education at Holy Cross Cathedral School, Lagos, Nigeria and St. Peter’s Faji School, Lagos Nigeria. His secondary education was completed at the Methodist Boys’ High School in Lagos, after which he went on to receive his Advanced Level Certificate of Education (A’Levels) in three subjects. Admiral Adekunle Shamusideen Lawal worked with the Ministry of Works and Survey in Kano, Nigeria. He then attended the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria, from where he graduated in 1963 with Bachelor of Science (Engineering) Honors. Admiral Adekunle Lawal also earned a CMarEng and FIMarEng (Chartered and Fellow of the Institute of Marine Engineering). His additional professional naval designations include FSS and PSC.
Admiral Adekunle Shamusideen Lawal joined the Royal Nigerian Navy in September 1963 as a sub-lieutenant. In 1964 he was promoted to lieutenant. In March 1964 he attended a marine engineering course with the Royal Naval Ships in Rotterdam, Holland. In 1966 he was promoted to lieutenant commander. From 1969 to 1971, Admiral Adekunle Shamusideen Lawal attended the Defence Naval Staff College in Wellington, India, where he received his M.Sc.Eng. (Masters of Science in Engineering). He was Chief of Material (Engineering) in the Nigerian Navy from 1972 to 1978 and was a member of the Supreme Military Council S.M.C. from 1972 to 1975 during the administration of General Yakubu Gowon. He was also appointed to the Board of Directors of the Nigerian Port Authority as a full Board member from 1972 to 1975. Admiral Adekunle Shamusideen Lawal served as the Chief Engineer on numerous naval vessels including the NNS Ogoja, NNS Beecroft and the NNS Nigeria during his time with the Nigerian Navy.
Admiral Adekunle ShamusideenAdekunle Lawal was appointed governor of Lagos State in 1975. As the governor of the most heavily populated state in Nigeria, one of the major challenges faced by his administration was managing the chaotic traffic problem in the state. During the World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture, he implemented an odd-even rationing traffic system to ease congestion in the state. Car owners whose license plates begin with even numbers were not allowed on most streets on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and those with odd numbers on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Admiral Adekunle Shamusideen Lawal voluntarily retired from the Nigerian Navy as an admiral in 1979, and after an illness he died in November 1980. He is survived by his wife Mrs. Taiwo Adefunmilayo Lawal (née Adesanya), whom he married in Lagos in 1965, and his six children.
Sources: Wikipedia and Google