This book focuses on the Servant Leadership practice as exemplified by Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola of Lagos State, Nigeria. Lagos State is the most populated (about 21 million people) in Nigeria. Trasformational strides have been witnessed by the people of Lagos State which are showcased in this book. Dr Ekundayo, John, did his PhD, on the Governor’s leadership style conducting both quantitative and qualitative research studies spanning three years. The outcome is the production of this book.
OUT OF AFRICA: FASHOLA-Reinventing Servant Leadership To Engender Nigeria’s Transformation “Fashola is not a politician; I meant it, I call him a mechanic. He approaches things in a clinical...mechanized fashion. In other words, he diagnoses the problem, and then goes into it like a skilled mechanic looking at the pieces...the ones that work he puts them back, and those which do not work, he sets out to eliminate them and transform them, because he is not a politician…” -Prof Wole Soyinka, Nobel Laureate, renowned social critic and political analyst He is a good example of what a focused leader is all about. I am very impressed with work of Governor Fashola. I do not know him personally but I am impressed with his output. And he is not loud and does not go about advertising what he is doing. He allows the public to appraise it. And again he gives the impression that there is a need to have competition in the economy; competition in the sense that he is not a member of my party but I am very impressed with what he is doing here (Lagos State)…And Governor Fashola is a good trailblazer; he is showing a lot of good examples in Lagos State and in Nigeria as a whole. - Dr. Ken Nnamani, former Senate President of Nigeria and a chieftain of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) We need leaders, leaders who will place their national interests above their personal interests. We need leaders, leaders like you (Fashola)....Lagos used to be called the centre of dirty and rubbish, but today it is the centre of cleanliness and decency…I am seeing the kind of leadership that I want…Leaders, not rulers. - Ambassador (Dr) Yusuf Maitama Sule, former Nigeria’s Permanent Representative at the United Nations This book is written on Fashola whose administration is transforming Lagos, once infamous for gross urban decay, into a modern, beautiful and functional city. This has been made possible by his new style of governance based on the initiative and pursuit of a knowledge–based approach to critical reforms which span resource mobilization, local government reform, innovative and inclusive approaches to planning principles, transportation, provision of educational facilities and health-care delivery and partnership building. All these have resulted from Fashola’s servant leadership style which is fully discussed in this well researched and structured 18 chapter book by the author. -Emeritus Prof Michael Filani, Former Deputy Vice Chancellor (Administration), University of Ibadan, Nigeria; and President, Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, Nigeria. The Fashola blood…he carries a very positive attitude-the can-do spirit...For example, from the physical, visible perspective, he is making changes that will please a whole lot of people…He is so large hearted and he is a strategist. -Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi, Chairman of Juli Pharmacy Plc, Group Chairman, former Minister of Health and Social Services, Federal Republic of Nigeria Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, the subject of this lucidly written book, is his own best witness as exemplified by his following words: 'The buildings will come down in 20 or 30 years' time. It is the institutions, the policy underlying it that will remain and once those policies are there, whoever is there in future can erect another building’. When a statesman makes institutions the fulcrum of his administration, he erects imperishability. Like Awo, Fashola will be remembered and celebrated; long after many a Nigerian Head of State had been forgotten. He has written his name in gold for posterity to savour'. -Dr Femi Orebe, Columnist, The Nation on Sunday. I am here for just a month; and I have been on a lot of African postings. I am struck arriving here in Lagos seeing the energy you have here in the sense of optimism and the hope that you have about the future. I think that people who had been here before me spoke that Lagos has been developing in the past year or two… (sic) -Robin Gwen, British Deputy High Commissioner, Nigeria I am speaking from the bottom of my heart. Fashola has performed; forget about partisan politics. Here is one person that has performed. People had given up on Lagos that it would not work, but he has made it work -Gov Aliyu Babangida, Governor, Niger State (PDP Chieftain) The Southwest longed for an alternative and the ACN answered their call. The people fought for their freedom, policed the polls; they watched the electoral process very critically. The ACN triumph in the southwest is a phenomenon with many causes. One of them, surely, is the spectacular success of Governor Babatunde Fashola in Lagos State. Fashola’s achievements were/are there for everyone to see. Lagos has become an indelible, incontestable advertisement for Fashola and the ACN. It has also given us a positive example; it has shown us that we could make things work in Nigeria. It has shown us that we are not a doomed country and land of the impossible. Fashola’s Lagos story goes beyond Lagos; it has become a parable, a symbol and an article of faith. I hope someday soon Fashola will have the opportunity to repeat at the national level the feats he has so spectacularly achieved at the state level. And when that time comes, let no one thwart the chance with the incubus called zoning or such like geo-ethnic atavism. With people like Fashola and a handful of equally competent others from different parts of the country, the long-deferred Nigerian renaissance will be within our reach. -Prof ‘Niyi Osundare, International acclaimed author, poet, professor of English and a social critic (based in New Orleans, USA)
John M. O. Ekundayo is an engineer turned organizational management and leadership researcher and consultant. He is a native of Ido-Ekiti, Ekiti State and attended Oyemekun Grammar School, Akure where he passed out with a Grade One Distinction in 1980. The same year, he was admitted to read Civil Engineering graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in 1985 from the then University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University), Nigeria, and practiced civil and building engineering in Nigeria for about two decades. He thereafter enrolled and graduated with a Master’s degree from Monash University, Melbourne, Australia specializing in Organizational Leadership in 2009. Wanting to satisfy his quest for further education, he proceeded to do his PhD (Management) by Research and graduated from one of the first private universities in Malaysia, Universiti Tun Abdul Razak, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in July 2012. The University is named after the 2nd Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tun Abdul Razak and presently has the Chairman of the Board of Trustees as Tun Najib Razak, the 6th Prime Minister of Malaysia, who incidentally is the first son of Tun Abdul Razak. John Ekundayo is married to Mary Anike Ekundayo and the union is blessed with children. He is a Registered Engineer with the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) and also a Corporate Member of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (MNSE). He loves singing, reading, writing, and mentoring young minds in order to raise leaders with vision, value and virtues. Dr John Ekundayo can be contacted through his email: firstname.lastname@example.org