Former president Olusegun Obasanjo Thursday expressed shock over the death of his erstwhile presidential adviser on women affairs, Mrs. Titilayo Ajanaku, describing her as a woman of great substance.
Obasanjo in a statement by his special assistant on media, Kehinde Akinyemi in Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital, said Ajanaku’s loyalty and commitment to women development was exemplary and worthy of emulation.
The former president recalled how Ajanaku and other Nigerians visited him in 1998 and persuaded him to contest for the presidential election.
Ajanaku, the first chairman of Abeokuta local government, Ogun state died at the age of 73.
Obasanjo described the deceased as a woman who would do everything in her capacity to uplift, improve and advance the cause of women, saying, this largely formed reasons for her been appointment as his women adviser, the position she served creditably well.
The former president, who also wrote a personal condolence letter to the Head of the Ajanaku family, stated that Ajanaku played a prominent role in his decision to contest for the post of president in 1998.
“I remember vividly one of my memorable encounters with Chief (Mrs.) Titi Ajanaku, when she accompanied a group of politicians led by Chief S. M. Afolabi of blessed memory to my Abeokuta residence to persuade me to contest as President of Nigeria.
“It was partly their persuasion and that of other groups alike that later yielded my final submission to contest for the office of the president of Nigeria.
“In her lifetime, Chief (Mrs.) Ajanaku had a genuine desire to contribute her quota to building a better society through advocacy for fundamental human rights and service to humanity. She was an activist dedicated to the cause of protecting the rights of women within the context of culture, policy and law. An advocate of gender balance, she remained mindful of those fundamental responsibilities of women which remain critical to family life and family stability,” he said.