Swollen Belly of Her Pride: Will Ibukun Bilikisu Awosika Finish Her Multibillion Naira Retirement Mansion in Ikoyi As Planned?  How She Got Schooled On The Transience of Power

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Swollen Belly of Her Pride: Will Ibukun Bilikisu Awosika Finish Her Multibillion Naira Retirement Mansion in Ikoyi As Planned?  How She Got Schooled On The Transience of Power

May 02
07:40 2021

The fantasies of an egoist are often mightier than his will, but he commits to their attainment all the same. He wishes upon his pride forgetting that arrogance functions on the oxygen of its own foolery; eventually, he crashes and burns at the crossroads where conceit chokes to the stab wounds of its own fangs.

Were Ibukun Awosika aware of such bitter truth, she and co travelers would not be kicked out of the bank.


Funnily enough, no one, as yet, is crying for Mrs Ibukun Awosika, the sacked chairman of First Bank of Nigeria PLC.  Rather, those close to her uppity family are sniggering and wondering what would now become of her proposed luxury retirement home in the fast developing, exclusive Shore Line Estate behind Banana Island, Ikoyi.

Perhaps Lagos’ luxury real estate best-kept secret, ShoreLine Estate is a prime sub-urban residential development sprouting from an idyllic and serene part of Ikoyi. Its closest neighbour is the highbrow Banana Island described as the most expensive estate in Nigeria. Shore Line Estate is where Nigeria’s wealthiest class and, particularly, former bank MDs are erecting eye-watering homes away from the prying eyes of the media and an inquisitive populace. It is where Nnamdi Okonkwo, the immediate past MD of Fidelity Bank, has a palatial home; same with the GMD/CEO of Zenith Bank, Ebenezer Onyeagwu among others in their privileged class.

Awosika, a self-styled motivational speaker with a pious facade, is erecting a sprawling mansion in the new billionaire’s haven. Though she currently lives in Lekki, sources said that she allegedly bought the land for N650m at 600,000 per sqm and that she planned to spend a further N1billion on the structure, finishing and furnishings among others. The pace of work on the project was so frenetic that there were speculations that perhaps she had a premonition of what would befall her. As the chairman of Nigeria’s oldest bank, money was not the problem for Awosika. Rather, it was how to enjoy her wealth without scrutiny from her throng of impressionable mentees. So, if she targeted three months to complete the project, she could jolly well have done so. But fate had other plans.

Days back, Awosika and the board of directors of the bank were sacked by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) over bad loans, corporate governance issues among other corporate and financial malfeasances. In a statement released Saturday, Awosika insisted that the board acted in the best interest of the bank in its decisions adding that they had great plans and aspirations for where the bank could go in the near future, building on all the work that had been done in the over five years since she became chairman of the bank.

However, if there is an angel in Bilikisu only her husband enjoys the good pleasure of her (the angel)’s company. To the staff of First Bank, she loomed large and domineeringly, like the legendary Cleopatra. Sources inside the bank said that while she reigned as chairman, messing up with her was at the person’s peril. She was described as imperious and intolerant and that if she sneezed, people caught a cold. She decided who got what in the bank even loans. But now that she has been disgraced, will she continue with her stately retirement home at the same pace?




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