The apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, has expressed deep distress over the death of the Chief Executive Officer of Access Bank Plc, Dr Herbert Wigwe, who died on Friday on his way to Las Vegas, USA.
Ohanaeze described Wigwe as one of our most brilliant creative thinkers, an audacious achiever, trailblazer, innovative edifice, and charismatic visionary, widely acknowledged Igbo ingenuity, hard work, integrity, prudence, and the capacity to turn adversity into a pool of opportunities.
According to the statement issued by the National Publicity Secretary, Dr. Chiedozie Alex. Ogbonnia on Monday, the Igbo toppest group said Wigwe proved to the entire world that the audacity of intellectual prowess, social skill, humility, and honesty is far more impactful than the audacity of aristocracy.
The statement read, “The President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide Chief Engr. Dr. Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, MFR; OFR; CFR; FNICE; FNSE; FNIST; KSG (Ahaejiagamba Ndigbo) is in a deep sorrow over the death of Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe.
“The Igbo Leader described the death of Herbert as one death too many. He stated that Herbert was exemplary in diverse ways, a motivator, a beacon of hope and a change agent with a robust vision. Ahaejiagamba lamented that Nigeria has lost a rare gem; an ebullient young man with an incredible zest for excellence, infectious enthusiasm, irresistible warmth, character comeliness, benevolent spirit and public wizardry.
“Herbert is one man who has changed the obscure narrative of Isiokpo with a network of asphalt roads, pipe-borne water, solar lights, and above all a university. His compassionate disposition found expression in the HOW Foundation, a non-profit organization that takes care of the widows, the vulnerable and scholarship schemes to indigent university students both in his Isiokpo community and beyond.
“Born in Ibadan on August 15, 1966, Wigwe attended the prestigious University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) and passed out in 1987 with a second-class upper degree in Accounting; Chartered accountant in 1989; MBA, North Wales University, UK, 1991; MSc, Fin. Economics, University of London; and the Harvard. His work experience took him through the Coopers and Lybrand Associates Limited; Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB), where he became an Executive Director; Deputy Managing Director and later the Group Managing Director and CEO of Access Bank Plc; Chairman of Access Bank Ghana Limited; Chairman, Access Investment & Securities Limited; Chairman, Central Securities and Clearing System (CSCS); and the Chairman of Access Bank (UK) Limited, etc.
“Chief Iwuanyanwu calls on His Excellency, Siminalayi Fubara, the Governor of Rivers State to immortalize the memories of the late Herbert Wigwe. He explains that it will serve as a source of inspiration to the present-day youths. The Igbo Leader elaborates that at the young age of 32, Herbert was already the top echelon in the financial sector and at 36, Herbert had already navigated the ownership of a bank; and incredibly transformed a fledgling bank into one of the top banking institutions in Nigeria with global networks.
“The Igbo Leader sends his condolences to the Wigwe family, the Abimbola Ogunbanjo family, the Access Bank Plc, the good people of Omueke village, Isiokpo, community, the entire Ikwerre and the good people of Rivers State.
“The Igbo leader prays that the Almighty will grant the souls of Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe; the wife, Barr. Mrs Chizoba Nwigwe and the son, Chizi Wigwe; and Abimbola Ogunbanjo an eternal rest in his bosom.”