“Passing of Taiwo Akinkunmi, Creator of Nigeria’s Flag”
Taiwo Akinkunmi: Unveiling Lesser-Known Aspects of Nigeria’s Flag Designer Remembering Pa Taiwo Akinkunmi
Pa Taiwo Akinkunmi, the visionary behind Nigeria’s flag, has passed away. He peacefully departed in the early hours of Tuesday following a brief period of illness.
His passing was shared by one of his children on Facebook, who expressed: “Life is fleeting, but I can confidently affirm that you lived a life of significance. Rest on, my father! Pa Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi (O.F.R.): A remarkable man has bid farewell.”
The Emblem Back in 1958, during his time abroad, Akinkunmi noticed an advertisement in a national newspaper requesting designs for Nigeria’s national flag, as the country’s impending independence from British rule drew near.
From a pool of over 2,000 submissions, his design was chosen.
Originally, the flag featured two green bands flanking a white band, along with a red sun and emanating rays on the white segment.
Although the sun was eventually omitted by the selection committee, Akinkunmi’s design was singled out for its originality and depth.
The green bands symbolize the lush forests and abundant natural resources of the nation, while the white band signifies peace.
The flag was raised on Independence Day, October 1, 1960, replacing the British Union Jack. For his chosen design, Akinkunmi was awarded 100 pounds.
He was later honored with the MON (Member of the Order of the Niger) distinction by President Goodluck Jonathan.
Educational Background and Legacy A native of Abeokuta in Ogun State, Akinkunmi was born on May 10, 1936, and resided in Ibadan.
He received his primary education at Baptist Day Secondary School, Ibadan, and his secondary education at Ibadan Grammar School.
Commencing his career as a civil servant at the Ibadan Secretariat, he ventured overseas to study Agricultural Engineering at Norway Technical College.