Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Cllr Tayo Situ, the Mayor of Southwark
My friend and colleague, and our Mayor of Southwark Cllr Tayo Situ died yesterday after a brave fight against cancer. His death is a grievous blow to his family, all those who knew him and to our borough of Southwark.
Tayo was one of life's truly gentle men. His life was informed by his religion and his devotion to his family and community. Even before his election as a councillor for Peckham Ward in 2002 Tayo was a respected community leader, and an effective representative of the Nigerian community in London and the United Kingdom.
After our election victory last May I discussed with Tayo what role he might take on in the new administration, and persuaded him that it would be an honour for his Labour colleagues if he were to become the new Mayor and First Citizen of our borough. He agreed, and I know from every conversation which I had with him since last May that he regarded it as a great privilege to be the Mayor of Southwark, and undertook the role with genuine pride and dignity. He met people and took part in events which he thoroughly enjoyed - and which showed him to be a great representative for our community and borough.
Tayo was also delighted to have seen his son, Michael, elected as a councillor in Livesey Ward last year.
He will be greatly missed by us all.