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The designer of the Nigerian flag, Taiwo Akinkunmi is dead

Taiwo Akinkunmi, the designer of the Nigerian flag has passed on at the age of 87. 

Taiwo Akinkunmi. Photo Credit: The Punch
Taiwo Akinkunmi. Photo Credit: The Punch

Abuja, Nigeria

Taiwo Akinkunmi, the designer of the Nigerian flag has passed on at the age of 87. 

Akinwumi Akinkunmi announced the death of his father in a Facebook post on Wednesday.

He wrote: “Life is indeed transient; I can say boldly that you lived a life with a landmark. Continue to rest, my father! Pa Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi (O.F.R.): Great Man has gone.

Akinkunmi was said to have died after a brief illness in the early hours of Wednesday.

He was born on May 10, 1936, and hailed from Owu in Abeokuta, Ogun state.

In 2021 during the celebration of his 85th birthday, then President Muhammadu Buhari celebrated Akinkunmi for upholding “the values that every citizen should emulate for nation building, which include humility, selflessness, integrity and a keen interest in seeking greater good for country and humanity”.

In 2014, Akinkunmi was conferred with the national honour of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR) by former President Goodluck Jonathan.

President Jonathan also directed that he should be placed on a “forever salary” equivalent to that of a special assistant to the president.

How Akinkunmi designed Nigeria’s flag as an undergraduate

Akinkunmi who was a student abroad in 1959 read about an advert in a newspaper calling for the submission of designs for the Nigerian national flag. During that time, the country was preparing to gain independence from the British.

At that time, he was studying engineering at Norwood Technical College in London and decided to join the competition.

One year later, Akinkunmi’s design came out the best from more than 2000 entries received. He received a reward of £100 for the feat.

That was how the Nigerian flag became—green, white and green.

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