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Women You Should Know- Bola Shagaya

A fashion enthusiast and a business mogul, epitomizing dexterity, expressing sheer abilities to capitalize on business opportunities and manifesting the rare trait of nimbleness of mind in the world of business; trade and investments. An emphatic typology of the believers in, ‘third world countries do not really exist, only third world minds’; a reassurance that age must not be regarded in achieving greatness, or breaking stereotypical barriers; Bola Shagaya might not be the loudest name song in choral unison by many Nigerians when it comes to affluence and influence, howbeit it, the world recognizes her as one of the richest women in Africa.[1] A much coveted terminology, applicable only to a select few.

Early Life & Family

Bola was born on the 10th of October 1959, to a Sudanese mother- Adut Makur, who was a seamstress, and a Nigerian Father, Emenike Mobo, who was a Public servant. Bola is said to have had her educational experiences at Queens School Ilorin (for her basic or secondary education), and her tertiary education at Ahmadu Bello UniversityZaria. She then proceeded to Armstrong College in California, where she studied economics and accountancy. These qualifications enabled her to pursue and begin a career in the Nigerian banking industry. Her springboard was the audit department of the Central Bank of Nigeria. It was from that position she ventured into commercial activities in 1983. This business experience started with the importation and distribution of photographic materials and she introduced the Konica brand of photographic materials into the Nigerian market and West Africa.[2]

Personal and Family Life

Bola is currently married to Alhaji Shagaya, a Kwara State-based transport mogul, and has six children. Sherif  Shagaya, Hakeem Shagaya, Deeja Shagaya, Naieema Shagaya, Amaya Roberts Shagaya and Adeena Roberts Shagaya. Her children are dispersed across the world, most reputably growing the Real Estate Empire in both Europe and the United States. Also involved in minor business and industry holdings across Asia and Australia. Bola Shagaya is a lover of sports, with specific interests in polo.

Upward and Forward

The evolution from those days of small beginnings saw Bola become a business mogul, becoming the managing director of Practoil Limited, which is regarded as one of the largest importers and distributors of base oil in Nigeria, serving local lubricant blending plants. Bola further delved into businesses and investments that tow along the lines of real estate, spanning across major cities in the country with over three hundred employees.

Recognition and Engagements

Bola Shagaya currently serves on the board of Unity Bank plc (formerly Intercity Bank) and has been on the board for well over eight years. She is also a member of the recently inaugurated Nepad Business Group, Nigeria. Bola Shagaya is a patron of the Fashion Designers Association of Nigeria (FADAN), and a fashion and art enthusiast who supports and encourages the fashion and art industry.

On 22 July 2010, she was awarded by the then President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan (GCFR), the title of Member of the Order of the Niger (MON).

[1] Forbes – Ten Female Millionaires To Watch In Africa.

[2] Wikipedia

Featured image source: Daily Post

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Jeremiah Aluwong

Jeremiah is a scholar and a poet. He has a keen eye for studying the world and is passionate about people. He tweets at @jeremiahaluwong.

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