Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, the Lagos State governor, on Wednesday said that the contributions of the late elder statesman and legal luminary, Dr. Tunji Braithwaite, to the emancipation of the masses and constitutional development in Nigeria will remain indelible.
Governor Ambode, who paid a condolence visit to the family house of the Braithwaites in Victoria Island, Lagos, in the company of some members of the State Executive Council (SEC), including the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mr. Tunji Bello; Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Samuel Olukunle Ojo, and others, said Dr. Braithwaite consistently fought for the masses throughout his life time, and so deserved to be celebrated for a life well spent.
The governor, while commiserating with Braithwaite’s widow, Grace, and the children, said the late icon paid his dues, assuring that the state government would continue to celebrate the ideals he stood for during his lifetime.
Ambode said he was following the footsteps of the late Braithwaite in using his position as the governor to work for the masses and the majority, so as to make life meaningful to the generality of the people.
He said: “I want to clearly state here that whatever it is that we are doing even as a government or as a party, they are the things that the late Dr. Braithwaite stood for. If there was anybody that was always on the side of the masses, such person was the late Dr. Tunji Braithwaite. He believed, confessed and fought for the masses throughout his life time.
He said: “No matter the side he was on, the political divide, his message was consistent, constant and he was always thoroughbred and that is why I have come here not only to console the family but to say that everything that I’m also doing is on the side of the masses and is on the side of the majority which he also believed in, which he confessed, which he stood for notwithstanding whatever trepidations or challenges on his way.”
Ambode stressed that he was happy to note that the late Braithwaite also lived a Christian life till the end, just as he recalled his contribution to the upliftment of the body of Christ and advancement of evangelical works.
He said: “I was just sharing with Mama (Braithwaite’s widow) some of the legacies that the Braithwaite family put in place in the Anglican Church in Epe and the things they continued to do. My prayer is that wherever he has left his sermons, we the younger generation will continue to take on that and also ensure that the philosophy of what he believed in would not die
“I want to console with the rest of the family and they should be assured that the name Braithwaite will never die. I believe strongly that anytime we are reading legal matters or any other issue that relates to constitutionalism in Nigeria, Braithwaite’s side of the story will remain indelible.
“Once again, on behalf of Lagos State, I want to say that this is something that thoroughly touched us; we are concerned about it and we would like to take deeper part in whatever you want to do to honour him because this is a great loss to Lagos and this is a great loss of a great man of Lagos and we intend to celebrate him.”
Dr. Omowunmi Braithwaite, the first daughter of the late politician, who responded on behalf of the family, thanked Governor Ambode for finding time to commiserate with them in this trying moment despite his busy schedule.