t was another day of honour – although posthumous – for Chief Ganiyu Oyesola Fawehinmi (SAN), who died nine years ago.
Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode unveiled a 44-foot statue of the legal luminary at the ‘Liberty Park’, in Ojota to “symbolise the phenomenon that the rights activist represented in his life time.”
The statue was also unveiled to mark the 80th posthumous birthday of the late icon as an affirmation of Ambode’s administration’s commitment to celebrating personalities whose actions helped to define the fortune and spirit of the state positively over the years.
The governor recalled that Fawehinmi led the struggle for attainment of human rights and dignity especially during the military regimes which dehumanized many Nigerians.
He said the late human rights activist would continue to remain a hero and role model for many till date.
“We celebrate the invaluable contribution and personal sacrifices of Chief Gani Fawehinmi in the campaign for human rights and dignity, especially in Lagos State where he spent the greater part of his life.
“Chief Gani Fawehinmi loomed large in the minds of the people, especially the underprivileged and vulnerable masses for whom he was ready to lay down his life. In the hallowed corridors of the Law Courts where he fought many battles, he was revered as a titan. Also his acts of philanthropy were borderless. He remains a hero and role model to many till date,” Ambode, represented by Deputy Governor Idiat Adebule, said.
He added: “Although Chief Gani Fawehinmi is no longer in our midst; like all great men, he lives on in our hearts and memories. We will continue to keep his ideals alive and pass it on to the next generation. He will continue to inspire us as we forge ahead with the missing of building a better society. This monument stands as a testimony of his strength and courage.”
The event was well attended by members of the human rights movement and Fawehinmi’s family including his widow, Alhaja Ganiyat Fawehinmi; Chief Femi Okurounmu, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, Jiti Ogunye, Debo Adeniran, Senator Tokunbo Afikuyomi, Declan Ihekaire, Nelson Ekujumi, Dr Yunusa Tanko, among others.