NGX Group, LCCI, Cardoso, corporate leaders honour late Ogunbajo

Nigerian Exchange Group, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr Olayemi Cardoso and other leading corporate figures in the Nigerian economy on Friday, 8 December paid tribute to late prominent corporate lawyer and philanthropist, Chief Christopher Ogunbanjo, CON.

This was done at an Afternoon of Tributes organised by NGX Group and LCCI in Victoria Island, Lagos to eulogise and honour the memory of Ogunbanjo. In his tribute, the apex bank governor eulogised the late Ogunbanjo not only for his strides in the corporate world but also his life as a father and grandfather.

Cardoso said, “Papa was a remarkable individual whose life and legacies transcend a myriad of fields. In particular, his contributions to the organised private sector in Nigeria was not only a life of achievements, it was also one that charted the way forward for multiple generations, inspiring them to elevate and aspire to be like him.”

“Through his efforts, the foreign currency decree of 1985 was promulgated, laying the foundation for a more robust and internationally connected financial system. I recall quite vividly that Chief Ogunbanjo was part of a group of forward-looking businessmen who in the late 1960s championed local equity participation in foreign firms operating within Nigeria,” said the CBN Governor whilst recalling Ogunbanjo’s achievements.

Representing the Chairman of the NGX Group, Dr Umaru Kwairanga was the NGX Group Chief Executive Officer, Oscar Onyema, who said, “As we reflect on his remarkable journey, we remember that he was a force behind the growth of many Nigerian companies. A true legal luminary, his influence reaches far beyond the boardroom.

Paying tribute to the late lawyer was also Alhaji Aliko Dangote, the President of Dangote Group, who described him as a champion of industrialisation in Nigeria and “That is the reason most of us are here today. I have worked with him closely. I and Abimbola (Ogunbanjo’s son) worked tirelessly to ensure his vision for NGX is sustained. I completed my tenure as president and handed over to Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede and he handed over to Abimbola. We are going to miss him.”

In his comments, billionaire businessman and Founder of BUA Group, Alhaji Abdul Samad Rabiu said, “He was an astute businessman and a philanthropist. He gave back to society, that was very important to him. I want to express my sincere condolences to the family and the business world.”

The incoming president of LCCI, Gabriel Idahosa, in his welcome address said that the late Ogunbanjo embodied dedication and service to country whilst the outgoing president, Dr Michael Olawale-Cole expressed confidence that Chief Ogunbanjo was resting in peace in the bosom of the Lord.

Chairman of Coronation Group, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede and former President of the National Council, Nigerian Stock Exchange said it was a privilege to pay tribute to the man whose name and signature are on the founding inaugural memo and articles of the exchange. “He put food on the table for many stockbrokers, many bankers but most importantly, millions of investors who benefited from his work during the privatisation program.

“The privatisation program was very much stimulated by his efforts and is certainly, alongside with the establishment of the exchange, the defining moment in the building of the Nigerian capital market. He not only made those contributions, he went on to chair several companies, to be an active investor in several companies and therefore put his money where his mouth is,” Aig-Imokhuede added.

The former Chairman of NGX Group, Bamofin Abimbola Ogunbanjo, eulogising his father said, “I would not be far from the truth to say that chief acquired his impressive credentials on the actual battleground of corporate law practice, in company boardrooms, and right here in the Lagos Chamber of Commerce where he stood out as a respected voice of the organised private sector.”

Other dignitaries in attendance were the Chairman of Zenith Bank, Mr Jim Ovia, Group Chief Executive Officer, FCMB Group, Ladi Balogun, Chief Executive Officer, NGX, Mr Temi Popoola, former Presidents of the LCCI, representatives from the Nigerian Bar Association, as well as family members of the deceased

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