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Pa Taiwo Akinkunmi, designer of the Nigerian flag, passes away



Mr. Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi (Order of the Federal Republic), the individual who designed the flag of Nigeria, has passed away.

Mr. Akinkunmi, who was 93 years old, passed away on Tuesday morning after a short period of illness.

The news of his passing was shared through the Facebook account of one of his children.

The post read, “Life is indeed fleeting; I can confidently say that you led a life of significance. Rest on, my father! Pa Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi (O.F.R.): An extraordinary man has departed.”

Pa Akinwumi, originally from Abeokuta in Ogun State, was born on May 10, 1936. He spent most of his life in Ibadan until his passing.

He commenced his professional journey as a Civil Servant at the Ibadan Secretariat and later went abroad to pursue studies in Agricultural Engineering at Norway Technical College.

In 1958, during his stay abroad, Akinkunmi stumbled upon an advertisement in a national daily calling for the submission of designs for the Nigerian national flag in view of Nigeria’s imminent Independence from British governance.

His entry was adjudged the best among the roughly 2,000 entries submitted.

The original design of the flag featured a white band flanked by two green ones, and a red sun with streaming rays was located on the white band.

The sun was eventually done away with by the overseeing committee to produce the present design.

Akinkunmi’s design was selected because of its ingenuity and profundity (the green bands represent the forests and abundant natural wealth of the country, while the white band represents peace).

The flag was officially hoisted on Independence Day (October 1, 1960) instead of the British Union Jack.

Akinkunmi was awarded 100 pounds by the government when his design was selected.