Titans, Colleagues Celebrate Herbert Wigwe’s Professional Legacy, Pay Glowing Tributes

Titans, Colleagues Celebrate Herbert Wigwe’s Professional Legacy, Pay Glowing Tributes
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As the events to celebrate the life and legacy of the group CEO of Access Holdings PLC, Herbert Wigwe, began on Monday, corporate titans, colleagues and friends have celebrated the professional legacy of the phenomenal leader, banker and entrepreneur.

Some of the speakers were Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Chairman Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun, Finance Minister Wale Edun, Access Bank GMD Roosevelt Ogbonna, Herbert’s high school mate-Henrietta Ugbo, CBN Governor Olayemi Cardoso, Nigerian politician, Ibrahim Dakwambo, Herbert’s professional colleague Cathy Echeozo, Group CEO GT Holdings Segun Agbaje and Wigwe’s longtime business partner Aigboje Aig-Imokuede. 

Titans, Colleagues Celebrate Herbert Wigwe’s Professional Legacy, Pay Glowing Tributes

Others include MD, Access Bank, Ghana- Dolapo Ogundumu, CEO of MTN- Karl Toriola, President, CIBN Ken Opara, Co-founder of Aluko & Oyebode, one of the largest integrated law firms in Nigeria, Gbenga Oyebode, CEO, FMDQ Group Plc Bola Onadele Koko among others.

Speaking at the event, Nigerian politician, Ibrahim Dakwambo, while describing Wigwe, labeled him a risk taker “who would stop at nothing to get what he wanted.” 

Dakwambo said that tenacious quality got him (Wigwe) to the admirable height he attained in the course of his lifetime.

Also, the group CEO of GT holdings, Segun Agbaje, described him as a friend who was always ready to give a listening ear when needed.

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He also noted that Wigwe managed being a friend and a competitor so well that all could not help but admire.

Furthermore, renowned Nigerian lawyer Gbenga Oyebode said Wigwe’s fearlessness has birthed an indomitable legacy that would leave on after him.

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He further assured the deceased family that all the dreams and yet to be accomplished aspirations will be brought to reality by his friends 

On his part, the Chairman of the Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote said he was a man who broke records and pushed boundaries. 

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“He said he was a pillar of strength and support for me and my family. He was proud to be part of my success story and I am proud to call him a dear friend. it will be impossible finding another Herbert. His courage was second to none and was really fearless, not scared of anything. 

“We shared a common principle of perseverance. Bidding farewell to a brother, mentee and friend is indeed a hard task for me. I am consoled that Herbert had run a successful race and has gone to a better place.

“Tò immortalize my beloved friend, brother and mentee, I have decided to name our major refinery and petrochemical road, out of the 120km, the biggest road will now be named Herbert Wigwe”

He also spoke on the courage he (Wigwe) exhibited in achieving feats with extraordinary outcomes.

Born in August 1966, Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe began his career at Access Bank in 2002 as the deputy managing director, and in 2014, he was appointed group managing director and managing director (GMD/CEO). 

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Prior to becoming a chartered accountant, he served as a management consultant for Coopers & Lybrand and as an executive director overseeing institutional banking at Guaranty Trust Bank.

Also, Wigwe held positions as Chairman of Access Bank (Ghana), Access Investment & Securities Limited, Central Securities and Clearing System (CSCS), and Access Bank (UK) Limited. At the time of his death, he was the Chairman of Unified Payments Services Limited. 

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He was on the advisory boards of Friends Africa and the Nigerian Mortgage Refinance Company.

The late Access Bank GCEO was named 2016 Banker of The Year by both The Sun and Vanguard newspapers.

Wigwe earned a B. SC. in accounting from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka; a Master’s in banking and finance from the University College of North Wales, now Bangor; a Master of Science in financial economics from the University of London; and an Executive Management Programme certificate from the Harvard Business School. 

In addition to being an Honorary member of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, he was a Fellow of the Institute of Credit Administration and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria.

Wigwe, his wife and son were on their way to watch the super bowl game when their Helicopter that was headed to Las Vegas, crashed near a border city between Nevada and California which led to their demise on February 9.

According to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, no survivors were located after a helicopter crashed in the Mojave Desert in California.

Chioma Kalu

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