David Kolawole-Vaughan otherwise known as DAKOVA, was one of the very few Nigerians who saw early the potential that fashion portends. He wasted no time in diving in and was one of the most influential designers in the 1990’s Nigeria long before he obtained his business administration degree from the University of Lagos (UNILAG) in 1998. The Chief Executive Officer of DAKOVA Exclusive Fashions Ltd, which he set up in 1986, has put on many different caps in his sojourn through life.
He has set up a nightclub, Aristotle Champagne Lounge in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), has been an aide to a serving minister, an aspirant for the Senate from Lagos Central Senatorial District, director of mobilisation for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and presidential campaign in Lagos all for the 2015 general elections.
He has also been a magazine publisher and head of projects for the Fashion Designers’ Association of Nigeria (FADAN). But his most fitting cap has been the fashion designer one for which he himself has boasted that it becomes him. With over 105 fashion shows and exhibitions to his credit and a vast clientele in his heydays, there can be no argument with his boast.
What is clear for everyone to see however is that he has had more than his fair share of disaster. Dogged by controversy in Abuja, he had no choice than to shut down his nightclub and return to Lagos and the fashion business he has ruled with many awards to his name. The return was also on account of the dwindling political fortunes of the PDP, some would add. But no sooner had he returned to his turf than his 82 Brickfield Road, Ebute Meta factory and residence was engulfed in a mysterious fire that consumed the entirety of his life’s work only the year before last. He would have to be a phoenix to come back from the ashes of that one.