For the first time in the history of Lagos State, the citizenry witnessed a different scenario when the incumbent governor, Akinwumi Ambode, lost out in the primary conducted by his party, All Progressives Congress.
Many were shocked by the party’s decision not to field Ambode ,despite his tremendous achievements.
Following Sanwo-Olu’s emergence, many began to literally dig into his persona. But those who know him better describe him as very cerebral and one of the few intelligent politicians the state has produced in recent times.
Society Watch gathered that since he won the governorship primary, he has been showcasing his intelligence to the chagrin of those who had earlier doubted his intellectual capacity.
In fact, he ihas become the most popular candidate in Lagos State ahead of 2019 governorship election.
A source disclosed that the upwardly mobile politician, otherwise known as BOS , would be the best prepared and fully loaded as he has been involved in the government since 2003.
His appointment as the Acting Commissioner for Economic Planning & Budget less than a year after he joined the trail-blazing administration of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as Special Adviser on Corporate Matters in 2004 took the political circuit unawares.
Many were said to have wondered what gave him the edge over others in the reckoning of Tinubu.
He chose to prove his mettle on the job by rolling up his sleeves and bringing his expertise in finance and management notched in over two decades in the private sector to play.
Since then, his has shown the world that he is indeed a man to be trusted with leadership quality.
He believes in the word of the legendary philosopher, Archimedes of Syracuse, that ‘Give me a place to stand, and I will move the earth’,
In 2006, he was Commissioner for Commerce & Industry and later appointed the Commissioner for Establishment, Training & Pensions. He was later appointed the Managing Director of the Lagos State Property Development Corporation by Ambode in 2016.
One of the flagship interventions of the LSPDC under Sanwo-Olu’s watch was recommencement of work on the abandoned 122-unit Lekki Apartments, which is currently near-completion.
Born into the illustrious Sanwo-Olu family of Lagos Island on June 25, 1965, Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu has grown to become a symbol of integrity, hard work, diligence, selflessness and empathy that are second nature to his worthy family.
The highly intelligent man has been fully involved in the best of two worlds; he is a private sector tested hand and a public sector reformer. His experiences straddle the two distinct, but connected pillars of every great economy.
Unknown to many, he has a very enviable banking career ,where he rose to the position Deputy General Manager (DGM) at the First Atlantic Bank (now part of First City Monument Bank). Babajide served as financial advisor and investment Banker to several blue chips and multinational companies and initiated many impactful transactions that created multiple positive effects on the economy.
Beyond the interesting highlights of his banking career, he also supervised notable Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE)-led privatization projects, such as concession of the Aluminum Smelter Company (ALSCON), National Arts Theatre, Lagos International Trade Fair Complex, acquisition of Ikoyi Hotels Limited and the Federal Government Debt Conversion Programme.
Without any doubt, he left the private sector with countless skills that differentiated him in the public service, but liquidity management and investment policy articulation could be considered his most valuable takeaways from the banking sector.
His role as a treasurer at Lead Merchant Bank between 1994 and 1997 and later Head, Foreign Money Market at United Bank for Africa and Treasurer at First Atlantic Bank, made him central to institutional survival and adroit at resources utilization.
Prior to his banking career, he worked (Post – NYSC) as a Seismic Surveyor with United Geophysical Nigeria Ltd (a seismic data acquisition company) in a role which took him round the whole Niger Delta and Lake Chad region prospecting crude oil for Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC)and NNPC between 1989 and 1991.
He is an alumnus of the prestigious Kennedy School of Government, London Business School and the Lagos Business School. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Surveying & Geo-Informatics and a master’s of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Lagos.
He has attended several high-profile training and leadership courses at some of the leading institutions in the world, especially in Europe, USA and Asia. He also boasts membership of the Nigerian Institute of Directors (IOD), Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM), and Fellowship of Nigeria Institute of Training and Development (NITAD).
‘’It is unexpected that Babajide’s enterprising career in the private sector, defining roles in public service and selfless contributions to the society would not have attracted international recognitions and accolades at home. But as a man attired in modesty, these awards and laurels are encouragements that keep him on the path of service to God and humanity,’’ a source added.