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Dele Alake: Meet Nigeria’s new Solid Minerals Minister

Henry Dele Alake, a Nigerian journalist, activist, technocrat, and politician, is influential in the country's political landscape.

Henry Dele Alake, a Nigerian journalist, activist, technocrat, and politician, is influential in the country’s political landscape. Born on October 6, 1956, in Ekiti State, the late MKO Abiola mentored him, and his contributions to journalism and democracy in Nigeria are well recognized.

With an estimated net worth of $2 million, Alake has an impressive resume that includes serving as Commissioner for Information and Strategy in Lagos State from 1999 to 2007 under Governor Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. Despite being married, there is limited information about his wife in the public domain. His son, Olatunbosun Alake, is the Special Adviser on Innovation and Technology to the Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwoolu.

Alake’s educational background began at Surulere Baptist Primary School in Lagos from 1961 to 1967. He later attended Christ’s School Ado Ekiti, earning the West African School Certificate. In 1974, he obtained the General Certificate of Education while pursuing his Higher School Certificate course at Igbobi College, Yaba, Lagos. He graduated with a BSc in Political Science from the University of Lagos, Akoka, Lagos, in 1978. He earned a master’s degree in Mass Communications in 1981 from the same institution.

Alake’s journalism career started when he served at the Ogun State Broadcasting Corporation (OGBC) as part of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) program. Afterward, he worked at the Lagos State Broadcasting Corporation (LSBC) as Senior Sub-Editor, Current Affairs Officer, and Principal Current Affairs Officer. Alake played a role in establishing Lagos Television (LTV 8) and later joined the Concord Press as a writer and editor. He became a columnist in the National Concord, editor of Sunday Concord, and editor of the National Concord.

Drawn into politics during the 1993 presidential campaign of his mentor, MKO Abiola, Alake faced terrorization and oppression due to his outspoken stance against the annulment of the election by General Ibrahim Babangida. He joined forces with patriots in exile, such as Senator Bola Tinubu and Lt. Gen. Alani Akinrinade (Rtd.), to fight for democracy restoration. Upon returning to Nigeria in 1995, Alake served as Special Adviser on Information and Strategy to Governor Bola Tinubu in 1999. He later became the State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, a role he held until 2007.

In 2010, Alake expressed interest in contesting the senatorial seat of Ekiti Central in Ekiti State, but intra-party conflict forced him to withdraw. In a recent development, he refuted a news story wrongly associating him with an attempted murder by a traditional ruler.

A former vice-president of the Nigerian Guild of Editors, Alake is affiliated with organizations such as the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and the West African Union of Journalists. He has received numerous awards for his exemplary service in journalism, including the ECOWAS International Gold Award in 2000. In August 2023, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu appointed Alake as Minister of Solid Minerals Development of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Dele Alake’s biography highlights his commitment to journalism, activism, and political service. From his early education to his current ministerial role, his life and career represent a dedication to the cause of democracy in Nigeria.