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Access Bank CEO Herbert Wigwe, Wife and Son Laid to Rest

Last month, Mr Wigwe, his wife and son were among six people who were killed in a helicopter crash in California.

Herbert Wigwe, the co-founder of Access Bank, one of the largest banks in Nigeria, has been buried in his hometown Isiokpo in Rivers State.

Last month, Mr Wigwe, his wife and son were among six people who were killed in a helicopter crash in California.

The burial comes after one week-long funeral rites that took place in the country’s commercial hub Lagos.

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Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, attended the burial, along with other prominent dignitaries.

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Mr Dangote has said he would name the road leading to his oil refinery after Mr Wigwe.

“I feel very helpless because I could not prevent the tragedy that befell my friend, brother, and mentee – a very loyal friend for that matter,” he said, a few days prior at the memorial.

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Tributes have also poured in from around the world.

“France has lost a great friend in Herbert Wigwe,” said a representative for French President Emmanuel Macron at the memorial on Wednesday.

Nigeria’s Vice-President Kashim Shettima mourned Mr Wigwe, saying: “Herbert left us in winter before the season of bloom.”

The helicopter was on its way to Las Vegas to attend the Super Bowl last month. The San Bernardino county sheriff’s department said the crash site was near Nipton, on the edge of the Mojave Desert Preserve.

The weather was poor, with reports of rain and snow showers in the area. Both of the pilots were killed in the crash and a former president of the Nigerian stock exchange.

Mr Wigwe was a prominent and influential figure in the banking industry.

He founded Access Bank in 1989. It became the largest bank in Nigeria in 2018 after it acquired its main competitor, Diamond Bank.

In recent years, Mr Wigwe had been working to expand across the continent, acquiring banks in countries including Kenya, South Africa and Botswana.


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