Nigeria: Alakija, Adele, Coker… The Who’s Who of Lagos families

By 'Tofe Ayeni
Posted on Friday, 29 April 2022 08:20, updated on Monday, 2 May 2022 10:09

Toyin Saraki United Nations 'Every Woman, Every Child' dinner, New York, America - 25 Sep 2012

Do you know your Ajoses from your Kosokos? Your Ojoras from your Dosunmus? Lagos is a city-state, and by itself would rank as Africa's seventh-largest economy. It contains 22 million people, but it is controlled by a handful of elite families, an aristocracy of power both ancient and modern.

Lagos, located in the southwest of Nigeria, is traditionally home to the Yorubas. But commercial capital Lagos is the most ethnically-diverse city in the country.

Traditional leaders — the Ologun Kutere Ruling House of Lagos

In Nigeria, traditional royal families still hold a significant place in the political landscape. Although a democracy, politicians in Nigeria often go to traditional rulers to gain favour, as many citizens still look towards their kings for support, guidance…. and votes.


Prince Emmanuel Esugbayi Ajose of the Ologun Kutere Ruling House of Lagos was one of the wealthiest entrepreneurs in Lagos during the colonial period. He founded two Methodist churches, and at the time of his death in 1949, he was the vice lay president of the United African Methodist Church Organisation.