Meet TPL Remi Makinde, an Excellent Philanthropist

Meet TPL. JACOB ADEREMI MAKINDE

Tpl. Jacob Aderemi Makinde simply referred to as ‘Remi Makinde was born on Friday, 21st of July, 1939 in Ikire. His parents were Mr. Abraham Satoye Makinde and Madam Julianah Taiwo Makinde both of blessed memory.

He, ‘Remi Makinde attended St. John’s Anglican Church Primary School, Ikire from 1946 – 1953 and Olu-Iwa College now Adeola Odutola College, Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State from 1954 – 1958. He emerged as the best student in his class in 1958. His name is still on the Honours Board of the College till today.

He later attended the Federal School of Surveying, Oyo; the Technical College, Ibadan (now called The Polytechnic, Ibadan). He proceeded to the University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia in March 1970 where he qualified as a Town Planner in December, 1971 (two academic years).

In December, 1966 when he graduated from the Technical College, Ibadan, he was the President of the Students Union and yet won seven (7) of the Scholastic prizes of the College out of 8 prizes. He was certainly a brilliant student.
As a result of his leadership style, there was no student demonstration during his regime. All thorny issues were resolved amicably through dialogue with the College Authorities

He rose through the ranks in the Public Service in Lagos State as a Town Planning Officer Grade II in December 1971 to become the Director of Town Planning Services in the State in 1987 and held the post till he retired at the mandatory age of 60 in July, 1999.

He then set up his private Consultancy Service – FRONTLINE CONSULTANTS which deals with Land Management issues including Town Planning and housing development. His Firm also deals with Staff Development Matters and Capacity building for various arms of Government and Corporate Organizations. He has been involved in Staff Training at the State and Local Government Levels in Lagos, Ogun, and Osun States, and also in the Training of Legislative Aids in the National Assembly, Abuja Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

SOME OF THE POSITIONS HELD

He was a School Prefect in his final year in Secondary School. He was the President of the Students Union in the Technical College, Ibadan in 1966. He held several positions in the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP) for 22 years, including the National Assistant Secretary, the Publicity Secretary, the Chairman Membership Committee and others before emerging as the National President of the Institute from 1994- 1996 (two terms). This was the 1st time in the history of the Institute that someone was elected as President without any opposition. He was the 5th National President of Ikire Progressive Union (IPU) from September 2002 – January 2010 when he voluntarily retired. During his regime, the Ikire Town Hall now nearing completion was started.

HIS WORKS SINCE RETIREMENT

This firm – Frontline Consultants has executed many projects including the Victoria Garden City (V.G.C.), one of the best Housing Estates in Nigeria today in terms of aesthetics, privacy, security, identity, continuous maintenance and sustainability for HFP Engineering Nig. Ltd.

Other projects include Mayfair Gardens Housing Estate also in Lekki Peninsula, and the Victoria Court Cemetery, the 1st private cemetery in Nigeria located in Lekki Peninsula also for HFP Engineering Nig. Ltd., the Master Plan for Bwari – a Satellite Town in the Federal Capital Territory jointly executed with Molaj Consultants, the Urban Renewal and Flood Intervention Studies for Ife East Local Government sponsored by Urban Development Bank of Nigeria Plc., the Development Plan for Ore, Ondo State which the Firm won at the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing after a kin competition with many other Consultants.

His Firm consults for renowned companies like HFP Engineering (Nig.) Ltd., the UAC of Nigeria Property Development Company (UPDC), PZ Cussons Plc and Nutricima Company Plc., Day Spring Property Development Co Nig. Ltd., First Marina Property Development Co Nig. Ltd. and several individuals.

MERIT AWARDS
His Firm – Frontline Consultants was adjudged the best outfit for Human Resources and Staff Development Matters in Osun State in Year 2000 and he was given a Merit Award for Excellence by the then State Governor – His Excellency, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola in Year 2004 for Excellence in Community Development during the 13th Anniversary celebration of the creation of Osun State.

The popular and very special Engineering Magazine- the Construction and Engineering Digest after careful studies selected 50 Nigerians for the National Hall of Fame in the Construction Industry in year 2011, Tpl. Remi Makinde happened to be one of those selected and honoured in Abuja with our Nation’s Vice- President, His Excellency (Arc.) Namadi Sambo then as the Special Guest of Honour.

As an individual, he is a recipient of nearly one hundred (100) merit awards of excellence in his chosen profession which is Urban and Regional Planning from several Universities and Polytechnics in Nigeria, in Christian communities including Oke-Osun Diocese, Anglican Communion where he is a Patron of the Women’s Organisation, and a Patron of the Diocese, the Bible Society of Nigeria where he is a life honorary member, and by Ikire Community, the Rotary Club of Gbongan and the Rotary Club of Osogbo both in Osun State to mention a few. He is also a member of the Rotary Club of Ikire.

CHRISTIAN SOCIETIES

He belongs to five (5) Christian Societies (2 in Ikire, 2 in Lagos and the fifth one at the Diocesan level in Oke Osun).
In Ikire, he is a foundation member of Young Men Christian Association of St. John’s Anglican Church founded in 1963. He is also a foundation member of Progressive Christian Movement (PCM) founded almost 25 years ago.
In Lagos, he joined the Young Men Auxiliary Association (YMAA) in 1983 of St. Paul’s Church, Breadfruit Lagos – the mother Anglican Church in Nigeria and due to his performance, he became the Secretary from 1985 to December, 2005 (20 years) when he voluntarily requested for relief.

He is a member of Christ Inner Circle (C.I.C.) of Oke-Osun Anglican Diocese which has continuously been giving a leverage to the Diocese in the past 25 years. He is a Synod delegate representing Ikire Archdeaconry as a nominee of the Lord Bishop and has been playing his role as a leader in this Archdeaconry and the Diocese tirelessly.

This is evidenced by the award given to him by the pioneer Bishop of the Diocese, Rt. Rev. A.O.Awosan and also the immediate Past Lord Bishop of Oke-Osun Anglican Diocese Rt. Rev. N. O. Fasogbon on April 9, 2005 for the “Special Merit Award for the Development and Growth of Oke-Osun Diocese” and in April, 2010, he was also awarded “the Grand Commander of Inter Religious Peace” by Rt. Rev. N. O. Fasogbon. He is always ensuring fairness to all every time.

During the celebration of the Silver Jubille of Oke-Osun Diocese in 2018, he was also given a merit Award for his contribution to the growth of the Diocese. In that same year (2010), he and his wife, Mrs Comfort Olu Makinde were appointed as a Patron and a Patroness of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Lagos Island Chapter in recognition of their contributions to the growth of Christianity in Nigeria.

Tpl. ‘Remi Makinde is happily married to Mrs. Comfort Oluyemisi Makinde and they are blessed with beautiful children all of whom are by God’s grace University graduates in various fields including Urban and Regional Planning, Architecture, Estate Management, Finance, Science and so on.

He and his wife have visited most of our nations State capitals and also the holy land of Israel, Palestine and Egypt. Both of them have also attended World Urban Forum (conferences on Urban Management) in China, Brazil and Italy and have spent their holidays in Whispering Palms in Iworo Badagry, Lagos State, Nigeria and in Europe, in United Arab Emirate (UAE), and United States of America including the Disney world in Los Angeles and Florida. They are therefore well exposed to the goings on in developed world.

He was the pioneer Chairman of Irewole Local Government Town Planning Authority (1978-1979) now split into three (3) Local Governments (Irewole, Aiyedaade and Isokan). During his regime, the Authority acquired parcels of land and prepared Development Schemes for them in Ikire, Apomu/ikoyi, Gbogan, Ode-Omu and Orile-Owu. These parcels of land are now being administered by the respective Local Governments for whom they now generate income. He served as chairman without receiving any salary or honorarium, he gave a free service.
During that same period, he was the Vice-Chairman of the Land Use and Allocation Committee for the Local Government and also the State level for the then Oyo state.

He is highly respected by all and sundry in and around his home town, Ikire as he gives and continues to give selfless service to the Community.
He is a pioneer member of Rotary Club of Ikire (Club number C0000 83258).

Politically, he is absolutely neutral as no political party has succeeded in dragging him into politics, but this has not stopped him giving off his best in the interest of his people and advice to all party leaders in Ikire to shun violence in the interest of the community.
He has been very helpful to most of those who came his way in form of financing their education, finding jobs for the unemployed and contributing his limited time, talent and treasure to the development of the community.

During his 80th birthday celebration, TPL Remi Makinde spoke about his saddest and happiest day at work.

He recounted, “MY SADDEST DAY AT WORK – While in service, as you expect, there would be ups and downs, but if the people you are working with and working for, love and appreciate your work, whatever the problem you may face will be secondary and surmountable.
The saddest time I think I experienced at work was in 1991, when a file in which I made recommendations for the employment of two (2) Town Planners got missing.

“The Lagos State Government had in place then a policy of offering automatic employment to National Youth Service Corps members who won merit award. Two Town Planners were involved. The file recommending their appointment was sent to the then Military Governor via our Permanent Secretary and the Honourable Commissioner. But the file got missing in the office of the Director of Personnel Management, who was to raise the memo to the Governor. Records showed that it entered there, but never came out. All physical searches did not yield any fruit.

“However, by God’s grace, that file was found in an unusual place with the knowledge of the Director of Personnel Management in that unusual/abnormal location. I am happy to say that today, those two Town Planners are now Deputy Directors in the Lagos State Public Service. They are today great assets to the system where they are working”.

He continued, “MY HAPPIEST DAY AT WORK – I have certainly had many happy days in life, but the one I count as my happiest day was when I turned 70 and the Lagos State Chapter of my great Institute- the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP) decided to celebrate the occasion with a Public Lecture for me. There has never been anything like this before. I was informed just a few days to the day by the Chairman of the Chapter, fellow Moses Ogunleye. It was a pleasant surprise as about 500 to 600 guests from all works of life were invited from all over the country to grace the occasion in Lagos Television Channel (LTV) 8 Hall to listen to the public lecture by Barrister Tunde Otubu, a top lecturer from the University of Lagos, Department of Private and Property Law. The lecture was published and made available to all present. The title of the lecture was “LAND USE ZONING IN A CHANGING URBAN ENVIRONMENT”. There are displays by Lagos State Council of Arts and Culture. Lunch was served to all who attended the occasion at no cost, I mean no cost to me.
Hitherto, I had planned to mark the occasion with a quiet thanksgiving.
I am eternally grateful to all my colleagues young and old of our great Institute.

“The Lord God Almighty will honour all of you too. Today, as I am 80 good years by Almighty God’s amazing grace, loving kindness, mercy and faithfulness, I worship Him and I give Him all the glory, honour, praise and adoration. I thank all of you for your support, your prayers and assistance before and now to make me enjoy this day.

“May all of you receive the grace of Almighty God to make you age gracefully in good health, happiness and prosperity. God bless you bountifully in Jesus name. Amen, he concluded.

TPL Makinde died after a brief illness on Sunday 25th April, 2021 and would be forever remembered for a life well spent and his philanthropy.

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